motherjones.com – L.V. ANDERSON – May 1, 2014
If the world actually did collectively go vegetarian or vegan over the course of a decade or two, it’s reasonable to think the economy would tank. According to “Livestock’s Long Shadow,” the influential 2006 U.N. report about meat’s devastating environmental effects, livestock production accounts for 1.4 percent of the world’s total GDP. The production and sale of animal products account for 1.3 billion people’s jobs, and 987 million of those people are poor. If demand for meat were to disappear overnight, those people’s livelihoods would disappear, and they would have to find new ways of making money. Go to story
Economy hostage to these industries: meat, drug, alcohol & tobacco, sex, gambling and speculative (commodities, shares, financials)
excerpt from Room conversation, Vrindaban, November 2, 1976:
PRABHUPADA: Their whole civilization is threatened. We are recommending no illicit sex, no intoxication, no gambling and no meat-eating. This is the basic principle of modern civilization. So the foundation is threatened. Theoretically they are taking that “If these four things are stopped then where is our civilization?” Where (do) we stand? Meat-eating, they have all over the world millions of slaughterhouse. So if these millions of slaughterhouse is stopped, then where they stand? They are threatened like that.
GUEST: Their whole set-up, their whole economy is…
PRABHUPADA: The millions of liquor manufacturers, breweries, millions of gambling houses, so, cigarette factories, so theoretically if this movement is successful then whole civilization is finished.
Return to sustainable, local economies
GURU GAURANGA: Monsieur le President would like to know, if this movement gets bigger and bigger, won’t it create problems in terms of working, the economy? Won’t the economy suffer if our movement gets bigger and bigger?
PRABHUPADA: No. Economy will not suffer, but economy will be simplified because we have made some artificial economy. Actually, in the Bhagavad-gita we find the economic problem is solved by producing food grains. It is stated there, annad bhavanti bhutani: [Bg. 3.14] “By eating food grains, both the animals and the men, they become stout and strong.” That’s a fact. According to Bhagavad-gita, economic problem can be solved anywhere. If you get, if you have some land, you produce your food grain and give it to the animals, especially to the cows, and she will give you in return milk. So if you get milk, fruits, vegetable and food grains, the whole economic problem is solved. We have already started this example in New Virginia. A group of men, we have got about five hundred acres of land, and we keep cows, and they work to produce some vegetable and food grain. So they don’t go outside for solving economic problems. At the present moment—now I am coming from India—in Bombay there is strike, railway strike. People are in so miserable condition to go to their work fifty miles, forty miles, hundred miles, for earning their bread. This kind of economic situation has increased the problems of life. Rather, if we accept this economic problem solution, then anywhere, any part of the world, you live. You don’t require to go outside, hundred miles, two hundred miles, five hundred miles. No. You produce your food there, keep animals, then everything is solved. Actually, the problem is, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gita, janma-mrityu-jara-vyadhi-duhkha-doshanudarshanam [Bg. 13.9]. One should take up these problems very seriously: birth, death, old age and disease. So… Actually, as spirit soul, we have no birth, no death. You will find in the Bhagavad-gita, na jayate na mriyate va kadachit: “The living entity does not take birth.” Na jayate na mriyate va: “Neither he dies.” Na hanyate hanyamane sharire: [Bg. 2.20] “After the destruction of the body, the living entity does not annihilate.” Just like we have got already the example: my body, childhood body, is annihilated; still, I am existing. Similarly, I will exist. Now, the problem is how I shall exist? I shall exist eternally in full knowledge and in blissfulness. That is the idea. But so long we accept this material body, it is just the opposite. It is miserable, without any knowledge and without eternity. Philosophy should be to save our time from complicated economic problems. We should make our life simple and save time for spiritual cultivation so that we can be relieved from repetition of birth, death, old age and disease.