I post this entry with trepidation. Too often I see the Bible referred to as prescriptive — live like that and go to hell forever; live like this and live forever. For the literary soul in me, this is mythology at its finest. Samples of this extreme faith have abounded throughout history and continue today. I do not want to delve into that mess. I do not want to write about silly creationism, the biblical basis of America’s Manifest Destiny, modern Christian privilege, biblical arguments on homophobia, or anything else biblical, not seriously, not with the intent of stirring up hatred; for that’s all it will do. In my opinion most of these arguments and practices are simple defense mechanisms against cognitive dissonance — self justification because you have no rational means of figuring out how to resolve issues. This is a light hearted post. I believe it as much as I believe in Tarot cards or rabbits feet. Because this is a cognitive dissonance related topic, I expect many people will take this post in a way I won’t appreciate. Do not preach religion to me. If you have no problem preaching, I have no problem deleting.
I’ve seen many websites extoll the virtues of vegetarianism or veganism and try to use biblical passages to support their stance. I accuse this because I feel it is true. I do not think people wonder how to eat, decide to research the bible for guidance, and then choose. I believe people choose how they eat then use the bible to back up their claims. The easy defenses are to claim the bible is an irrelevant, outdated storybook and that the wheat today is not the wheat Jesus ate. Either way it then becomes a faith battle and neither side will win the other.
I won’t refer all of the hackneyed sites out there quoting passage after passage supporting vegetarian lifestyles — they are all hackneyed in my view — but I will link to Wikipedia. Most sites I’ve seen probably use this page as a reference. It contains a remarkable collection of biblical passages supporting vegetarianism. I argue the list is not complete. It omits the first and possibly most important biblical food story of all — Cain and Abel.
So let’s get to the beginning of it all — GENESIS. The Cain and Abel story. Most of us don’t remember its details. We know they were Adam’s sons and they fought. Why and who won, probably most Christians have to look up. The story runs like this,
Cain was a vegan and Abel an animal eater. God told Cain he was an idiot, so Cain got upset. He posted a website calling Abel an evil bastard, then he killed him. He and his kin have been pumping their misguided hatred ever since.
It’s the simplest and earliest explanation for today’s online vegan who regurgitates baseless fact, pseudo-science, and vitriolic accusations of animal murder at those not of their ilk. It completely explains their modern, misguided behavior. Vegans must have genetic, direct lineage to the dark Cain himself.
Later, as God was checking Facebook, he discovered Abel’s account was hacked.
Cain, you’re a little turd. I banish you to outback of Australia where you shall live with half naked beautiful women who never get fully naked, ever, where you will eat nothing but bananas and durian fruit, where you will be plagued for eternity by large, constant, fluffy, and stinky poop, and your accounts will be constantly hacked and bombarded by intellectual superiors. Good God, what was I thinking when I created you?
And there you have it, the modern descendant of God’s black sheep Cain, the modern vegan. It’s the only explanation that makes sense to me; therefore it must be true.
From Wikipedia, mostly:
Cain leadeth Abel to death, by James Tissot paired with an image depicting modern Vegan misinterpretation.
Hebrew Bible version:
1Adam knew his wife Eve intimately, and she conceived and bore Cain. She said, “I have had a male child with the LORD‘s help.”a[›]2Then she also gave birth to his brother Abel. Now Abel became a shepherd of a flock, but Cain cultivated the land. 3In the course of time Cain presented some of the land’s produce as an offering to the LORD. 4And Abel also presented [an offering]b[›] — some of the firstborn of his flock and their fat portions.c[›] The Lord had regard for Abel and his offering, 5but He did not have regard for Cain and his offering. Cain was furious, and he was downcast.6Then the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you furious? And why are you downcast? 7If you do right, won’t you be accepted? But if thou do not do right, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must master it.”8Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.”And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.—Genesis 4:1-8 (HCSB)After this, God said to Cain, “What hast you done? The voice of thy brother’s blood crieth out to Me from the ground! So now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand. When thou farm the ground, it shall not yield good crops to you! Thou shall be a fugitive and a vagabond on the earth! (Genesis 4:10-4:12)