OSHO vs. CHEK ON VEGETARIANISM!
Hello and good day!
I hope you are all well, in TAO, walking the middle way – not too much – not too little.
Today, I’d like to share my own Taoist perspective on vegetarianism.
I get a barrage of emails and questions from people about my own experiences with vegetarianism as well as asking my help regarding their own concerns.
One of the most common questions I get in this regard is, “why do so many spiritual masters promote vegetarianism?”
I do my best to answer as many questions for people as I can, but the number of questions is far greater than the time I can allot to answering them while trying to run my businesses.
Because of my concerns that many people are being misled by spiritual teachers, and so-called experts writing on the topic, I decided to write about it.
For those of you that want to get into the nitty-gritty of the topic, these articles should bring some clarity to the physiological and metaphysical concerns regarding vegetarianism.
This morning, I received the OSHO INTERNATIONAL News Letter for June 2011 in my in-box. It contained an article by OSHO, extracted from his talk titled: Osho, The Essence of Yoga, Talk #5.
I have not only listened to this lecture on audio recording, I’m one of the few people that owns the ENTIRE OSHO Library. Several years ago, I purchased every book, audio, CD, DVD, DVD-R and VHS tape available in English and have studied every of his recorded lectures and read many of his books.
In fact, I’ve got about 700+ pages of hand written notes from my studies here in my library. I also produced an audio download program called The Absolute Essentials Of OSHO, which is also available at www.ppssuccess.com in the audio section of “Products and Programs”.
When I listened to OSHO’S talk, The Essence of Yoga, Talk #5, it was like someone was dragging their nails across a chalkboard!
I love OSHO deeply, yet there are two areas I’m not in agreement with him.
The first is vegetarianism, which is the topic of our blog today. The next is his views on lesbianism and gay orientation, which I’ll address in tomorrows blog.
Let’s see what happens when Paul Chek debates OSHO on vegetarianism, shall we!
PAUL CHEK Vs. OSHO ON VEGETARIANISM
To save space and time, I will only put the relevant comments from OSHO’s article in my blog. I will head each comment by OSHO with his name and my comments will be below each comment, which you can identify by my initials (PC).
OSHO: Man, naturally, should be a vegetarian, because the whole body is made for vegetarian food. Even scientists concede to the fact that the whole structure of the human body shows that man should not be a non-vegetarian. Man comes from the monkeys. Monkeys are vegetarians, absolute vegetarians. If Darwin is true then man should be a vegetarian.
PC: This statement is dangerously incorrect!
the human being’s structure is not designed for being a vegetarian. Man is a hunter-gatherer. The word “hunter” makes it clear that by nature, humans eat a combination of what is available.
Historical studies of people around the globe show that for the largest span of human evolution, humans were nomadic. By definition, a nomad is one who follows the animals, the meat.
Here is a dictionary definition from www.thefreedictionary.com/nomadic: no·mad (n m d) n. 1. A member of a group of people who have no fixed home and move according to the seasons from place to place in search of food, water, and grazing.
There are numerous excellent books investigating what early human diet was composed of. I’ve read many of them. There is consensus among experts at large. The research shows that humans ate a mixture of plant and animal foods, as was necessary for survival.
Of the many books in my library, the most readable for the laymen is without a doubt, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, by Weston A. Price.
Weston Price was very interested in vegetarianism. He looked worldwide for healthy vegetarians. Wherever he found vegetarian tribes, he found tribes close by eating meat. When he compared the vegetarian tribesmen’s health with those tribesmen eating meat near by, he consistently found better health, fewer indicators of disease among them.
Next, humans do not descend from monkeys!
Man’s closest biological relative is the chimpanzee. Studies on the diet and lifestyles of chimpanzees show that in fact, they do eat meat! Yes, the hunt and eat meat. Meat is not the mainstay of their diet but they do supplement their diet with animal flesh as needed.
It appears that OSHO didn’t study, nor understand Darwin’s teachings.
I had to study taxonomy in order to create a functional rotation diet plan for my patients, which is in my book How To Eat, Move and Be Healthy! If you study taxonomy, you can find clear evidence for my point in the genetic tree.
OSHO: Now there are ways to judge whether a certain species of animal is vegetarian or non-vegetarian: it depends on the intestine, the length of the intestine.
Non-vegetarian animals have a very small intestine. Tigers, lions â€” they have a very small intestine, because meat is already a digested food. It does not need a long intestine to digest it. The work of digestion has been done by the animal. Now you are eating the animal’s meat. It is already digested â€” no long intestine is needed.
Man has one of the longest intestines: that means man is a vegetarian. A long digestion is needed, and much excreta will be there which has to be thrown out.
PC: Again, this is incorrect.
There are numerous studies in this regard. One that comes to mind was done by Byron Robinson, MD, who wrote the book titled The Abdominal And Pelvic Brain (1899 and 1907 2nd Ed.).
Due to his own interest in this very topic, Robinson dissected some 650 corpses and measured the length of the entron (gut tube from mouth to anus). He found that there was a 100% difference in the length of human intestinal tracts. He found people with entrons as short as 21 feet, and as long as 42 feet.
He then tracked their racial (genetic) origins and showed conclusively that those with the longest intestinal tracts came from regions were plant foods were dominant in the diet due to a lack of big game or animal foods.
He also showed that those with shorter entrons came from regions where animal flesh was the mainstay of the diet.
Because the protein in plants is entangled with fiber, a much longer fermentation (rotting) time is needed for extraction. This is why, for example, cows have five stomachs.
Robinson’s research showed that indeed, people living primarily on plant foods had genetically adapted over long periods of time to aid their ability to gain nutritional benefit from a diet that was largely plant based.
Next, OSHO is incorrect in saying that animal flesh is already digested. Research by Jeff Bland, a nutritional biochemist shows that on average, it takes about six pounds of vegetable matter to create on pound of flesh meat.
All animals consume, digest, assimilate and metabolize their chosen foods to recreate their bodies.
OSHO’s perspective here is somewhat warped by a lack of knowledge in this regard.
The truth is that animal flesh rots very quickly compared to plant foods, which means that it takes less time to decompose in the animal or human body that consumes it. With a more rapid rotting time, less digestive time is needed to break it down.
All foods contain enzymes that trigger decomposition when the life-force is cut off at the time of death or being harvested. In plants, these enzymes are responsible for the ripening effect. In animals, decomposition of flesh is essential to aid consumption by soil microorganisms.
If a person eats more flesh foods than their body:
A. Needs, or
B. Can effectively digest, the rotting process and release of bacteria from the flesh can cause autointoxication, poisoning of the body.
Yet, the same can be said of any foodstuff eaten in excess.
Because animals contain potentially high amounts of specific strains of bacteria, above and beyond that of plant foods, over consuming animal flesh can be quite stressful to the human immune system. This is much more of a concern when eating raw meat in general because cooking kills bacteria at large.
OSHO: If man is not a non-vegetarian and he goes on eating meat, the body is burdened. In the East, all the great meditators â€” Buddha, Mahavir â€” have emphasized the fact. Not because of any concept of nonviolence â€” that is a secondary thing â€” but because if you really want to move in deep meditation your body needs to be weightless, natural, flowing. Your body needs to be unloaded; and a non-vegetarian’s body is very loaded.
PC: Incorrect again.
The truth I’ve come to know from 27 years as a student and teacher of nutrition, conditioning and lifestyle is that whenever man eats incorrectly for his biological needs, he will be burdened.
First by fatigue, then by illness, and finally by disease.
Any deviation from optimal health triggers a stress response from the body, elevating cortisol levels, hyper-exciting the mind and stimulating the left brain hemisphere, all of which are real antagonists to the meditative process.
Next, when OSHO states that Buddha, Mahavir and all great meditators from the East have emphasized a vegetarian diet, he is being potentially misleading.
First of all, OSHO states many times in his various lectures that no one knows for sure what Buddha said!
Buddha not only didn’t write anything down (nor did Jesus or Mohamed according to scholarly research!), he didn’t want his students taking notes. He wanted them to pay attention to what he was saying and to learn from experiencing the teachings, not writing or talking about them.
OSHO describes in his talks how within days of Buddha’s death, some 32 schools of Buddhism opened, each claiming to have the authentic teachings of Buddha, who never wrote anything down!
Therefore, how could OSHO say with any authenticity what Buddha emphasized. If anyone may have a grasp on what Buddha taught, it would be the Dalai Lama, who eats meat from time to time.
Though many Eastern spiritual teachers do encourage vegetarianism, having studied their teachings for many years as well as having video footage of many of them, I can tell you for SURE that a large percentage of such teachers are unhealthy!
It is essential to remember that what you call “your mind”, is a function of “your body and brain”. The brain lives in and sustains its life and function in your blood, the health of which reflects your dietary and lifestyle choices.
It would be unwise to assume that just because someone utters words of wisdom that they are healthy.
My question is simply, how may their opinions have changed if their search for Truth was supported by a health body-mind?
Additionally, many such teachers emanate from regions of the world that are vegetarian due to environmental constraints. How would they have handled an Eskimo student? How about a Native American Indian student, both of which have evolved on a meat dominant diet and therefore, have a genetic need for animal flesh?
OSHO: Just watch what happens when you eat meat: when you kill an animal what happens to the animal when he is killed? Of course, nobody wants to be killed. Life wants to prolong itself; the animal is not dying willingly.
If somebody kills you, you will not die willingly. If a lion jumps on you and kills you, what will happen to your mind? The same happens when you kill a lion. Agony, fear, death, anguish, anxiety, anger, violence, sadness â€” all these things happen to the animal.
All over his body violence, anguish, agony spreads. The whole body becomes full of toxins, poisons. All the body glands release poisons because the animal is dying very unwillingly. And then you eat the meat; that meat carries all the poisons that the animal has released. The whole energy is poisonous. Then those poisons are carried in your body.
PC: This commentary shows me that as evolved as OSHO was, he wasn’t a shaman, nor was he in tune with plant consciousness.
There is now plenty of research showing that indeed, plants are highly conscious. A great book to begin your studies in this regard is The Secret Life Of Plants by Peter Tompkins and Christopher Bird.
The research shows very clearly that plants are not only exquisitely aware of human activity, thoughts and emotions, but that they are aware of everything in their environment, including each other.
As a shaman, I’ve spent a lot of time learning from plants and trees. All I can say is that not only have I learned as much from plants as I have animals (I grew up on a large farm), but my studies of shamanism has shown over and over again that the shaman and medicine men often attributed their knowledge of medicine making to their plant teachers!
The point here is simple: Both animals and plants are conscious, have lives of their own, interrelate, and are very aware of when danger or harm is a threat and react in their own unique ways to the situation.
I do agree that killing an animal must be done correctly and there is a significant amount of information available on that in the organic and biodynamic farming communities.
Killing anything without being respectful of it as another living form is disrespectful and increases the likelihood of ingesting fear.
Most people in our culture are already so saturated with self-generated fears, they are numb to their surroundings and especially oblivious to their food choices or how they affect their bodies. The medical community exemplifies this ignorance and makes a great profit from such contrived indifference and/or ignorance.
OSHO: That meat which you are eating belonged to an animal body. It had a specific purpose there. A specific type of consciousness existed in the animal’s body.
You are on a higher plane than the animal’s consciousness, and when you eat the animal’s meat your body goes to the lowest plane, to the lower plane of the animal. Then there exists a gap between your consciousness and your body, and a tension arises and anxiety arises.
PC: Again, this statement by OSHO is potentially misleading. Certainly, a specific type of consciousness exists in each animal’s body-mind construct. Yet, a study of genetics will quickly show that a human being is the evolutionary product of most, if not all it’s evolutionary predecessors.
We (the body) are mineral, water, plant, and animal. That is an undeniable fact. Though the consumption of each foodstuff, be it plant, animal, processed, synthetic or otherwise will influence your state of consciousness, it will only affect human consciousness negatively if:
A. The animal or plants were harvested through inhumane practices, and/or,
B. Your consumption disrupts physiological balance, which reflects itself in the mind, and therefore, the consciousness of the consumer.
Human life is only on a higher plane than animals when he chooses to behave and live at the potential of a human being. All you need to do is go to a vegetarian health-food store and ask, “where’s the bacon?”
Then, stand back and get ready for the storm (of junk yard dog behavior and) of human bias and ignorance, much of which stems from being mislead by the very kind of misinformation I’m addressing here.
Whenever anyone abuses their body-mind, a gap between their soul-nature (intuition) and ego-nature is created. Focusing on meat as the etiology of such challenges leads people confused and often results in them becoming animalized because they are literally in starvation for nutrition.
The unhealthy body naturally becomes frightened for it’s own (biological survival), which is reflected in their mental-emotional state and behavior. For anyone to live and function from a higher plane than an animal requires a combination of sound health and the cultivation of intelligence, which generally comes by way of wise teachers.
Speaking metaphorically, you can feed an idiot a vegetarian diet all you want and they will only be a vegetarian idiot.
Here you can see me teaching my students how I pray for food as a means of expressing love, gratitude and respect for giving me (us) life. Though the entire process I teach is too long for this blog, I would like to share the prayer my soul gave me for blessing my food:
Dear Food Spirits,
Thank you for love you have given Mother Earth and Mother Universe. Thank you for the love you are giving me now. I invite you to join me in body, mind and spirit so that together, we can make the world a better place for all living beings, now, and in the future.
(A-Men, A-Ho Great Spirit, or the closing of your choice)
OSHO: One should eat things which are natural, natural for you.
PC: Ah, Yes! Now if OSHO didn’t contradict himself so often in this regard, his own students would be more likely to achieve enlightenment because they would be sound in body and brain, which is an essential prerequisite to being sound in “mind”!
OSHO: The tongue should not be the controller. It does not know anything about the stomach. It does not know anything about the body. The tongue has a specific purpose to fulfill: to taste food. Naturally, the tongue has to judge, that is the only thing, which food is for the body, for my body and which food is not for my body. It is just a watchman on the door; it is not the master, and if the watchman on the door becomes the master, then everything will be confused.
PC: This again is incorrect and exemplifies a misunderstanding of physiology.
The tongue is connected to both body and brain. All parts of the body are expressing the instincts of the body as mediated through the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).
It is a lack of sound guidance by parents, teachers and authortity figures like OSHO and other people with various “credentials” that leads people to have such estranged beliefs. In fact, it is your beliefs that are the watchman at the door until you are:
A. Healthy enough to have an intimate relationship with your organs, glands, and body at large and can take direction from them.
For example, when you need to pee, you are being given information from your bladder; it wants you to stand up, walk to a tree or toilet and alleviate your body of toxic waste.
Yet, research shows clearly, for example, that when teachers and/or parents restrict children to their desks, tasks, or otherwise suppress the urge to urinate or defecate that our natural reflex connections and awareness of these organ impulses is subdued. Eventually, it can be so subdued that disease is the byproduct.
B. Open minded enough to both love and care for your body and be honest as to when an idea does or doesn’t serve your needs or pursuits at any given time in your life.
For example, I’ve had to put many on a temporary vegetarian diet to clean their body and reduce toxic burden. Yet, they have to be open minded enough to act on my advice. Many simply are not, even though they pay me very well for my coaching. They are stuck, just like OSHO is in this regard!
OSHO: Man is confused, more confused than buffaloes. You cannot convince buffaloes to eat ice cream. Try!
PC: Yes, at large, humans are confused. Largely because of misinformation just like this!
A buffalo doesn’t have the ego-mind development of man because they don’t have the brain structure for handling novel concepts. They don’t have nearly the frontal lobe or neocortical structure man does. They are largely limited to biological instincts and intelligence. They don’t have any capacity to entertain the ideas imparted to millions by mass-media misinformation campaigns!
OSHO: ! Man is part of the animal kingdom.
PC: Here, OSHO contradicts himself.
This is the kind of contradiction that creates great confusion among students. OSHO was famous for his contradictions. I just hope his students don’t become sick and famous for following them!
OSHO goes on in the article trying to substantiate his theories with references to massage therapy and pain, but I won’t extend the blog any longer because I will simply have to do more of the same and I feel I’ve made my point.
I will close today by sharing a perspective that is critical to all of you.
You will NEVER know the truth of OSHO’s statements, my statements, or those of any other so-called “expert” until you first become open minded enough to try different ways of eating, and second, get healthy enough to be come “aware enough” to know the difference!
I have lived the vegetarian life, the hard core meat-eater’s life and all variations on the theme.
My life is devoted to experiencing and using my knowledge to bridge gaps and tear down the kind of impossibility walls developed when “masters” give definitive statements based on issues they have little or now authentic experience of.
OSHO states he’s read over 100,000 books, but you can read books about cardiac surgery all your life and I still won’t let you operate on me until you demonstrate authentic experience.
Knowledge can’t become wisdom until it is experienced. The synthesis of experience is wisdom.
I suspect anyone with enough life experience and adequate knowledge of health sciences would find my points both logical, and practical.
May your minds be open to experience the fullness of life today and all-ways!
Love and chi,