Opinion Piece

A shift in awareness

By 18 August 2020No Comments

A Shift in Awareness

By Simone McAllister


Like most of the population, I grew up eating meat; a lot of meat.  And because of my European background, a lot of deli meats and pâté.  I was the most carnivorous of my family.  In fact, my uncle always cooked two steaks for me at his famous BBQ’s; something with which my cousin took significant issue!

As an adult, I realized the correlation between meat and where it came from.  My brother went vegetarian, then vegan, which made me look at the issue a little closer.  I tried vegetarianism but lasted only six months.  Society had indoctrinated me into a meat-eating world, and I gave in to it.

The nagging conflict didn’t go away, however.  When I’d go out for drives in the country and see cows and pigs and sheep and their offspring, I would be in awe of their beauty and cuteness.  Then the guilt would set in; knowing that I ate that cow and pig and sheep and their offspring.  This conflict only grew stronger, and I could no longer find the rationale to continue being a meat eater.

First, I stopped eating beef.  The desire had just gone away.  Chicken followed when a rather large health issue arose, and I went vegetarian to avoid the acidity.  It felt great.  It felt natural.  Throwing myself into research, I learnt of the horrors of the dairy industry and my life as a Vegan was born.  A flood of love and respect awakened my true self for the sentient beings that which we share this planet earth.  Cows, sheep, dogs, pigs, chickens, horses, orangutans; every living creature.  My life had taken an about-face.  I could finally see the cattle heading to the slaughterhouse on trucks awaiting a cruel death. I could see pigs and sheep crammed in corrals in unhygienic spaces with little food and water.  I could see the unnatural way in which the dairy industry provides a steady flow of milk and cheese. Everything that was happening to animals was seen, and it couldn’t be unseen.

Being a vegan is a twofold lifestyle.  You no longer contribute to animal suffering, cruelty and death.  And, you provide your body with healthy plant-based foods that give you optimum nutrition and vitality to live a complete life; physically and spiritually.

It’s an interesting and powerful feeling to take on-board the passion of one’s conviction to a level that, like my love of writing, chose me; it’s inherent.  I cannot, however, judge people for eating meat, as I was once amongst them.  But I will share the vast information that I have researched to show how we do not need meat to live and thrive.  I will attend rallies and walks and protests to give my support to stop the insanity that is animal testing, hunting, horse and dog racing, rodeos and live animal exports to name just a few.  I will do everything in my power to change a way of life and a level of awareness that unfortunately comes so naturally to human beings – ignoring the fact that animals feel, love, breathe and understand.


© 2020 Simone McAllister