Welcome to Session 5 of the Meditation and Yoga Philosophy course.
Start off by doing the half-bath and listening to the kiirtan here
Now do the meditation, asanas, massage, and deep relaxation as before.
Now we’ll talk about one of our favorite subjects — food!
A healthy mind lives in a healthy body, and a healthy body depends on what we eat: “You are what you eat.” Or more precisely, what you eat goes to make up the cells of your body, and the cells of your body affect your mind. That’s the main reason why vegetarian food is good for the body and good for the mind. Here’s a more comprehensive rundown of the reasons for being vegetarian:
• It costs about ten times more to produce the same amount of meat protein as vegetable protein. That’s a cost to the world, considering there are enough resources in the world for every human being to live at current middle-class American standards. If everyone ate only half as much meat, it would release enough food reserves to feed the entire developing world.
• Meat production uses 17 times more land and 8 times more water. That’s a cost to the environment.
• Animals do actually suffer when they’re killed, not to mention their daily suffering in the cramped and artificial conditions of factory farms. And yes, contrary to Western religious teaching, they do have souls. George Bernard Shaw once remarked, “Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends.”
• Vegetarian food is better for the body. Many big-time Western diseases are caused by meat and the toxins, hormones and chemicals used to produce it. People often ask: where do you get your protein from? Well vegetable protein such as in beans, dairy products, nuts and seeds is proportionately higher than in meat, and much easier for the body to digest and absorb. And the myth about meat giving more strength can easily be ruled out when you consider that the elephant is the strongest creature in the world. Many athletes are now switching to vegetarianism. The tortoise is one of the longest-living creatures, and it’s also vegetarian. The Hunza people — vegetarians — have the longest lifespan of all.
• Vegetarian food is better for the mind. It makes the mind calm and alert, increases concentration, memory and intelligence (by the way, Einstein was vegetarian), and generally makes you feel more relaxed, contented and happy.
Note that vegetarian food means no meat of any kind (red meat, poultry, fish, seafood, etc), as well as animal derivatives such as animal fat, gelatin and eggs. Onions, garlic and mushrooms also have a negative effect on the mind, as well as intoxicating drugs. All the better if you can cut down on these too. Milk and dairy products are okay though, because of their positive effect on the mind.