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A Bit of Domination, A Bit of Exploitation
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A Bit of Domination, A Bit of Exploitation

Dominion over the animals and the earth, was given to Adam and Eve. All mankind has dominion over the Earth, according to most religious denominations. But what does that mean?

In my life, as I've learned, dominion means to churches a lot less than it seems to have meant when this edict was issued. From the very beginning, after this, the creation was completed, there needed to be a care-taker. After all, there is a lot of stuff here on Earth; a lot of animals, mountains, fish, cattle...a lot of THINGS, and ANIMALS, and STUFF!

Adam named most things right away, and was happy. Then he wasn't, became lonely, God made Eve, everything was great, then it wasn't. They got themselves evicted for misbehavior, went about living, everything was great, then it wasn't...all of this, and it was never enough. 

When God gave Adam dominion over the earth, to name things, to over see things, I really don't think He, meaning God, meant factory farming. I don't think He meant genetic modification of seeds, that when they were given to Adam, were good enough. I don't think He meant slaughter of animals on such a huge scale, and with so much suffering. 

As we know, whether or not Christ was vegan, doesn't mean he meant kill everything, en masse, just in case someone was hungry. It also didn't mean to change the landscape to such a degree, that someone from the 1860's West Virginia, wouldn't recognize the landscape due to the removal of the mountain tops today. Seriously, dominion over the Earth does not mean to lay waste to the land, just because we can. 

To me, being vegan offers more responsibility to the animals of the earth, including people. It means to try to feed all people. To take care of the poor, to mitigate pain and suffering wherever we find it, how ever it is dealt. It means taking responsibility for our actions on this earth, so that there is an earth to leave our children, and grandchildren, into perpetuity. It means to take seriously the pain and suffering of all animals, especially those we kill for food. 

How much does it hurt for people to take two days, and eat no meat? It does not. How hard is it to adopt a pet from a shelter, over buying one from a backyard breeder? Which one is closer to it's death because the backyard breeder took that person and sold them a dog or cat, or horse? How hard is it to recycle, reuse, and reduce our purchase of goods we may not really need or want? It takes effort, is all. Just a bit of thought.

As vegans, we can spread the word to our friends, and family, to start. Meatless Mondays, Recycle Tuesday, Water conservation Wednesday...we can make a difference, through education, and fun. This is dominion over the earth, and the air we breathe, wind, and waters. This is responsibility we should all get behind. 

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  1. oooowow
    Amen and good post! voted.....check me out....if you like..
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    1. Katapoet
      Katapoet
      I read your posts, and voted. I was married to a man who simply said he could never be a vegetarian. It is difficult, to be sure. Keep the faith, at least you are doing something good for you. You will always be able to look at your life and say, I lived and breathed what I believed. It was not lip service. Good on you!
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  2. Veganara
    Veganara
    Vote no 2. Awesome blog, I am with you all the way! As you say, it just takes a bit more thought and effort to make a better world, and it is so worth it, that I can't understand why more people don't do it. I do think maybe things are changing a bit though, we need to keep spreading the word! Your post covers some of the same points I make in one of my most recent Why Are More Christians Not Vegans? Have a look at that, and if you like it, please vote!
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  3. Akanksha
    Akanksha
    Another heart touching post Debra! Only if all humans could feel like you, the earth would be a much better place. Keep spreading the word, because each post does make a difference!
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    1. Akanksha
      Akanksha
      And I loved the image used :)
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  4. Kristin Barton
    Kristin Barton
    Hi, As a minister, I do a lot of writing about spirituality and how various life-style choices can help us with our religious journeys. I would like to gently point out that not everyone is Christian and so it might be best to use a phrase closer to "most Christian denominations." Saying that "most religious denominations" agree that man had dominion over the Earth is not true. It's only true of Abrahamic religions. There are many other religions on the planet that do not share the same scripture nor dogma, such as Buddhism, Wicca, Native Spirituality, Baha'i, and others. And many of those folks are vegan. Wishing you blessings!
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    1. Katapoet
      Katapoet
      Of course, Kristin, you must be right. Thank you for pointing that out. I did not mean to say that all shared the same dogma, but I thought the same sentiment, generally, is mentioned in most religions. There is a shared responsibility to behave as good stewards over the earth, I would think, in all religions, and to do what you will in greedy fashion, for personal gain, to me, is to abrogate that responsibility. As Christians who stand behind that statement, that anything goes because "we have been given dominion over the earth...", that it is a cop out to behaving selfishly, and for personal gain. This ignores the suffering of others, and of animals, still. Thank you for the correction, I appreciate the input!
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      1. Kristin Barton
        Kristin Barton
        It's no problem at all and I didn't mean to give offense, either. Actually, in non-Abrahamic religions, there usually isn't the idea that we have dominion over the Earth. But yes, your sentiment is deeply appreciated. I myself have tried to adopt a cruelty-free lifestyle because of my Neo-Pagan religious beliefs, and in my religion, we see ourselves as being no more important than the rest of the natural world. We take vows to be good stewards of the Earth as part of our religion. It's great that there are a growing number of Christian people who are adopting cruelty-free lifestyles!
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        1. Katapoet
          Katapoet
          It is crazy stupid, isn't it, that more people, with the earth crying out for healing, aren't taking the lead and fixing what we did to hurt our home? I hope more Christians, and everyone in general, gets behind this effort. Thank you for writing. The more dialogue we engage in, I believe the more we open doors to understanding for absolutely everyone. Well, except for card carrying members of the NRA, (their own religion, to be sure) they seem at this juncture, to be pretty stuck in the kill narrative. Thank you so much!
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  5. crabbymamma
    crabbymamma
    Wonderful post! If only more people thought this way!
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    1. Veganara
      Veganara
      Hi Kristin, I was interested in your recent comment, I didn't realise you are a minister. I don't know if you have seen my recent post Why Are More Christians Not Vegans? (if you haven't, please have a look!), but I mention there that I rarely meet any vegetarians/vegans who are Christians, Jews or Muslims, the world's three major religions, and I was wondering if that was at all significant. I think you have just answered that question for me, as those 3 religions are the Abrahamic ones, isn't that right? Which means that they consider man has "dominion" over the creatures of the earth, which means eating them and using them, as they think! But I have heard that in fact in the Bible the original Hebrew word that was translated as "dominion" really means "caretaking", or something close.
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  6. evalovesbend
    Great post! Voted. Check out my post Vegan Churro Chips and Dip and vote if you like it :)
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