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How do you live your life without going crazy? I'm getting overwhelmed with the idea of living a no-harm lifestyle and I'm seeing red at the probability that the vast majority of people in this world feel it's ok to harm others in some way. But there seem to be so many ways in which others are harmed by a single person's actions that I'm even overwhelmed at the idea of remaining functional in mainstream society - but I'm sure there are lots of you who do just that.<br><br><br><br>
So how do you live this way? Do you preach to the masses? Consider yourself absolved of any responsibility? What? How does this work?
 

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My basic approach to life is summed up by the teachings of Ahimsa. Some of this seems strange if you aren't used to religious talk but if you read past that you get the idea:<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">MEANING OF AHIMSA<br><br><br><br>
Ahimsa or non-injury, of course, implies non-killing. But, non-injury is not merely non-killing. In its comprehensive meaning, Ahimsa or non-injury means entire abstinence from causing any pain or harm whatsoever to any living creature, either by thought, word, or deed. Non-injury requires a harmless mind, mouth, and hand.<br><br><br><br><b>Ahimsa is not mere negative non-injury. It is positive, cosmic love. It is the development of a mental attitude in which hatred is replaced by love. Ahimsa is true sacrifice. Ahimsa is forgiveness. Ahimsa is Sakti (power). Ahimsa is true strength.</b><br><br><br><br>
SUBTLE FORMS OF HIMSA<br><br><br><br>
Only the ordinary people think that Ahimsa is not to hurt any living being physically. This is but the gross form of Ahimsa. The vow of Ahimsa is broken even by showing contempt towards another man, by entertaining unreasonable dislike for or prejudice towards anybody, by frowning at another man, by hating another man, by abusing another man, by speaking ill of others, by backbiting or vilifying, by harbouring thoughts of hatred, by uttering lies, or by ruining another man in any way whatsoever.<br><br><br><br>
All harsh and rude speech is Himsa (violence or injury). Using harsh words to beggars, servants or inferiors is Himsa. Wounding the feelings of others by gesture, expression, tone of voice and unkind words is also Himsa. Slighting or showing deliberate discourtesy to a person before others is wanton Himsa. To approve of another's harsh actions is indirect Himsa. To fail to relieve another's pain, or even to neglect to go to the person in distress is a sort of Himsa. It is the sin of omission. Avoid strictly all forms of harshness, direct or indirect, positive or negative, immediate or delayed. Practice Ahimsa in its purest form and become divine. Ahimsa and Divinity are one.<br><br><br><br>
...<br><br><br><br>
LIMITATIONS TO THE PRACTICE OF AHIMSA<br><br><br><br>
Absolute Ahimsa is impossible. It is not possible to the most conscientious Sannyasin or monk. To practice that, you must avoid killing countless creatures while walking, sitting, eating, breathing, sleeping and drinking. You cannot find a single non-injurer in the world. You have to destroy life in order to live. It is physically impossible for you to obey the law of non-destruction of life, because the phagocytes of your blood also are destroying millions of dangerous intrusive spirilla, bacteria and germs.<br></div>
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<br><br><br><a href="http://www.dlshq.org/teachings/ahimsa.htm" target="_blank">http://www.dlshq.org/teachings/ahimsa.htm</a>
 

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I know a great deal of my friends would never ever contemplate going vegetarian, because clearly I am [and people like me are] insane, right? So instead of preaching to them in a feel-bad way I try to make the occasional suggestion. I'm sure it often falls on deaf ears, but even stuff like suggesting they might find Jamies Fowl Dinners of interest, or checking out a certain type of locally available egg. The occasional petition, or information regarding a company not testing on animals. I know it is unlikely they will give up meat completely so I try to offer alternatives, or at least make people aware of where their dollar goes. I also tend to aim stuff like vivisection or animal cruelty to them, to at least get the ball rolling and get them thinking about animal suffering.<br><br><br><br>
If people ask me questions about my diet, I try to talk it up and show how it is possible and not as difficult as one might imagine. I don't really do much at all (and I'm certain my efforts are not good enough for many), but I try to find a balance between talking someones ear off about stuff they refuse to listen to, and hopefully helping animals in some way...at least through awareness, which is a big thing for me.<br><br><br><br>
Maybe channel your energy into something productive, whether it be helping out at a vego event, or an animal welfare group/shelter. I find that helps me a lot. Also surrounding myself with likeminded people - though this does not happen often. When I flip out and go on an anti-omnivore rampage, I tend to write it all down. I think half my myspace blog is about mofo's eating and abusing animals and remaining ignorant to it =)
 

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Very nice posts Mr. Sun and Kristen4382!<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>ginger_girl</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
How do you live your life without going crazy? I'm getting overwhelmed with the idea of living a no-harm lifestyle and I'm seeing red at the probability that the vast majority of people in this world feel it's ok to harm others in some way. […] So how do you live this way? Do you preach to the masses? Consider yourself absolved of any responsibility? What? How does this work?</div>
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How do I live vegan? By trying to keep my feet on the ground most of the time.<br><br>
The idea of a <i>no</i>-harm lifestyle is mainly that, an idea(l).<br><br>
What I am working towards though is a <i>less/least</i>-harm lifestyle.<br><br><br><br>
“Considering myself absolved of any responsibility” never really occurred to me.<br><br>
I see recognising responsibility and exercising accountability as an attitude and action which has to be attempted every day anew.<br><br><br><br>
Focussing not so much on what others are <i>not</i> doing, or on their numbers, or on the long run.<br><br>
Rather on what I <i>can</i> do now (conscious consumer choices, vegan outreach), and what I should refrain from (stereotyping, assuming ill will where there just might be a lack of knowledge or insight).<br><br><br><br>
Encouraging people to learn and to reconsider their points of view.<br><br>
By sharing information and experiences, and first of all by my not-100%-perfect-but-hopefully-credible example on a daily basis.<br><br><br><br>
Remembering I have walked in the majority’s shoes (and seemed stuck in some views) for a very long time myself.<br><br>
And that nevertheless it was possible to move on and eventually go vegan.<br><br>
Knowing that I still know very little, and continue to learn.<br><br><br><br>
“It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.”<br><br>
- St. Francis of Assisi
 

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I just accept that I'm a goddamned nutter and always will be. Sometimes one just has to embrace, love and accept one's inner lunatic.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks to all for the responses. I suppose the idea of "no harm" is overwhelming at first because it involves the entire lifestyle, down to the condo I live in.<br><br><br><br>
Mr. Sun, thanks for the passage. I have pasted it onto my desktop for daily reading.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>ginger_girl</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Thanks to all for the responses. I suppose the idea of "no harm" is overwhelming at first because it involves the entire lifestyle, down to the condo I live in.<br><br><br><br>
Mr. Sun, thanks for the passage. I have pasted it onto my desktop for daily reading.</div>
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Yeah, I love Ahimsa. And *Ahimsa*. Glad you liked it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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oh darlin<br><br>
in a sky full of people only some want to fly<br><br>
isnt that crazy?<br><br>
in a world full of people only some wanna get high<br><br>
isnt that crazy?<br><br><br><br>
i loves a good billy joel song <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/rockon.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":rockon:">
 

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I feel for you ginger_girl. I get moments of being so overwhelmed too that I can't stand it. But it passes. Remember so much is out of your control. You are not here to control every one else's actions. You simply can't. And you can't take responsibility for their actions either.<br><br><br><br>
I work in a large nursing home. I sometimes get angry when I see all the tests/procedures/therapies given to people who obviously will not benefit from them because they are clearly close to death or suffer from advanced dementia. I see this when so many others are not given health care. It bothers me. All this wasted money could be used to take basic better care of the patients by providing better direct care. I see that the chart is more important than the patient. And there is not a damn thing I can do about it. All these tests/procedures/therapies are making someone rich.<br><br><br><br>
One of our nursing assistants went to Mexico because she needed extensive dental work. All wisdom teeth pulled. Root canals, fillings and more. Cost her just over $500.00. She had to have the work done and could not afford it here. It would have cost her thousands.<br><br><br><br>
Many things on a daily basis upset me.
 

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Acceptance is key I guess.<br><br>
Do what you can.<br><br>
Don't preach, just lead your life by example.<br><br>
"Be the change you wish to see" and whatnot.<br><br>
Finally, don't get angry, get active! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/broccoli.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":bobo:">
 
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