• Chapter 5. Immediate Global Shift to a Plant-Based Diet > V. Be the Change You Want to See
      • V. Be the Change You Want to See

        Change the World by Changing Ourselves

        The best to save the planet is the individual.

        It begins with us. Since time immemorial, evolution always begins with the individual. If we want to change the world, we change ourselves first. Now, even if the government forbids smoking or drinking or drugs, but if people individually continue, then we have not made much difference. So now, we have to change.

        The more people who eliminate meat and, indeed, all animal products from their lives, the more we have a chance to save the planet and not only that, to actually restore our earthly home to her original grace and beauty and even more so, more than what we have known, more beautiful, more abundant, more peace, more gladness than what we have known up to now.

        And there will be more incredible inventions to come if our Earth restores itself, leading a life of compassionate, merciful and peaceful existence with all beings on this planet.

        Positive Energy Will Save the World

        All of you out there, please continue. Do your work because everybody’s effort really counts. Even one flyer of information about the meat diet and about the benefit of the vegetarian diet to help the planet does count. Even one word does count. One piece of information does count. Everybody helps a little bit, and then the whole planet will change because of the collective consciousness of the positive direction.

        Everybody wants the same thing; everybody wants to save the planet; everybody wants to sustain the globe, to keep this way of life, or even better. Then the consciousness is huge. The energy is very benevolent. And if everybody just puts down that piece of meat, changes the lifestyle—very simple.

        Save the planet first and things will change after. It’s
        not you alone can save the planet. It’s the people
        who change their consciousness. If they go veg, go
        green, do good, then that means they have changed
        for the better. Their consciousness has gone up a
        higher level, and then of course, they merit the Earth.
        They could continue to live here and their children,
        grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.

        At that time people will be in a higher level of consciousness and things will be clearer to them and to all. We will live in peace and love. You have to envision a positive world, the Heaven on Earth that you would like it to be. You have to envision the nobler world, the positive world, the beautiful world, the Heaven world. Saving the world is a compassionate act. Even if the world is not saved, you are. You are saved by your loving kindness. Your merit will be multi-fold because you want to save others.

        If you want to save the world, if you want to do anything toward this goal, you’re enlarging your nobility, your heavenly attribute. So if you spread the encouragement to save the planet, if you go veg, if you go green, if you do good deeds, you help others because you want to save the lives of other beings on Earth, then you have a saintly quality. You reawaken your holiness. It’s not just about saving the physical planet and the physical lives. It’s also about how great you are for wanting to do so and actually partaking in this life-saving crusade.

        The Power is in the Consumers’ Hands

        No one can prevent us from doing what’s right for our lives and that of our planet. We just stop using, eating, buying animal products, then these corporations will just disappear in no time. So, the power is in our hands.

        We, the ordinary consumers, exercise the most powerful vote simply by boycotting meat, and all the animal products, and becoming vegans. There would be no need to continue the life-threatening practice of animal raising if we all became vegan.

        The pork industry in the US has lost US$5.4 billion since 2007 [as of 2009].142 Company after major company is declaring bankruptcy right now, so they’re asking for help from the government, which ended up buying their unwanted pork products from the farmers for US$105 million in 2009.143 The reasons that the powerful pork industry is struggling are, number one, high costs of feed grains, and number two, the consumers are not buying their products as much anymore since the swine flu outbreak. Imagine if no one eats meat, no one would ever kill these animals for a living. That would be more powerful than the companies’ lobbying.

        We have the power. The animal companies only have power because we give them the power! We share our power with them. But if we stop buying it, they’re gone.

        Supreme Master Ching Hai’s “How to Veg 4 Starters”

        1. Veg before you shop—means eating vegan food before you shop, so you don’t feel hungry when you are in the supermarket.
        2. Go straight to the veg section of the supermarket.
        3. Get veg recipes from the Internet or from friends, or from a vegan organization.
        4. Make supportive, new, veg friends.
        5. Get info about veg benefits.
        6. Spread the veg trend.
        7. Feel like a saint.

        Be Green

        Be green. These are actions to protect the environment such as planting trees, developing sustainable energy and driving hybrid cars, etc. Of course, this includes the green diet, the vegan diet.144

        Support Organic Vegan Farming

        Try to be organic. Buy organic food to support organic farmers. Do anything you can to support this organic, vegetarian farming.

        Livestock farmers who chose to go into the vegan or organic vegan business, from the US to Iran to Au Lac (Vietnam) to Formosa (Taiwan), they changed because they had gotten new information, sometimes from other people, that there are better ways to be a farmer, a true farmer, who grows life-sustaining products and works in harmony with the land. We, too, can be the ones who inform, who talk to the animal farmers, one by one, about the harms of meat and the benefits of organic vegan.

        Whoever wants to do it, whoever can, do it. Go to the farmers, talk to them. Whenever you can, make the time to go. Even though we are not in a power position like the government, but we can try, one by one. Tell them the picture. Tell them the situation. Tell them again and again until they understand. Write to them. Talk to them. We can only try our best.

        Plant Trees and Vegetables

        We could plant organic vegetables and trees. Better still are those fruit trees and nut trees, and those vegetables or legumes like beans and stuff that need little water.

        One tree at a time, and then we will never have an oxygen shortage.

        You can plant vegetables or trees on your land or around your home. Fruits can fill us up as well. I am not referring to those sweet fruits only. There are many different kinds of fruits, including cucumbers, watermelons, white gourd, ridged gourds and papaya. Plant whatever you can. Plant the ones that can grow easily, are filling and nutritious, grow fast, and don’t need too much water, because we can live on anything.

        For people who have a yard, instead of growing grass or something else, or let it be vacant, grow vegetables. You can grow enough for yourselves or as a supplement. This way, you can have good, vegetarian food, save money, time and the energy used on transportation.

        You can even plant and harvest indoors. Or if we have a balcony, we can even plant it in water. We must start now so that you can have your own vegetables.

        If there is a water shortage, you can plant more beans or fruits. Beans are very easy to grow. They grow very fast. They can grow without water. You can learn how to grow things by watching Supreme Master TV.145

        Be Frugal

        Live a simple life, more simple, the more simple the better.

        Be frugal, meaning don’t use more than what we need and appreciate what we have. The resources nature has given to us are precious and limited. We can’t abuse it because only when we spend wisely will they last.

        We don’t have to always buy new and fashionable clothes. We don’t have to go to the latest restaurant trend. There are many things in life which could give us joy and satisfaction without much of the money involved. We can always live on without furniture; it’s also fine.

        You save—you use less hot water, shower less time, and don’t keep water running while you’re showering, don’t keep water running while you’re brushing your teeth, turn off your computer, turn off the light when you don’t need it, turn off anything standing by that you don’t need, then you will save maybe 10% of your bills, water and electricity together.

        Another way to cultivate simplicity is to spend time also in the tranquility of nature, or create a natural environment at home where we can go for peace and quiet. Reading mind-uplifting books such as spiritual scriptures, as well as practicing meditation, are also good ways to remind ourselves that we truly don’t need much to be happy and live a contented, peaceful life.

        Do Good Deeds

        We have to create the loving atmosphere for our planet.
        This will also help protect us.

        Another good way to quicken our movement to a sustainable planet is to generate more positive energy: Do good deeds and be loving and kind. Expand our loving quality. This is what will create a shield, invincible, to protect us and the planet.

        We should do good deeds to further strengthen the loving, positive atmosphere of our planet. We have to create a happy, loving atmosphere for our planet, then we can live in that atmosphere, be protected and be happy. This is very scientific. We don’t need even to believe in any religions to understand this: We create our atmosphere. If everyone creates the harmonious atmosphere, our planet will be in peace, and we will be like in paradise.

        If you have spare money or Buddhas and Bodhisattvas have given you more than you need, then go give to the needy and the poor. You give only when someone is in need. You shouldn’t give for merits.

        Pray and Repent
        Pray, pray fervently. Pray to Heaven, to all the Buddhas, to gods, to all the angels who are helping to awaken us. Pray to all the animals that we have harmed and tortured directly or indirectly by consuming meat—pray for their forgiveness. Pray for Heaven’s protection and forgiveness as well. Pray all the gods to help awaken us on time to save our home. We have to pray sincerely and act swiftly. We truly cannot do this by ourselves alone.

        We must repent for all the harm done to the Earth and her inhabitants and ask again and again for forgiveness. And we have to reverse our action. And the best way to repent is to make an effort to change. Turn around, do what is good. Refrain from all what is bad.

        We can pray that divine power manifests on Earth to awaken leaders, media, influential people, and all the world citizens to take the right steps to preserve our planet, and fast—fast before it’s too late. Because at this point, we do need Heaven’s intervention to save our planet, not to pray to them to protect us; just to pray so that they awaken everybody to the solution of the vegan diet, because that is the solution that will save our planet.

        Start the Vegan Trend
        Spread the News

        As ones who have helped to awaken countless people to the reality so that they can change their lifestyle for the better, these are the true pioneers of their fields and rightful stars and heroes of our time.

        We have to spread the news; everyone else who cares about the planet must spread the news. Then people will join us.

        Write to Governments and the Media

        For a farther-reaching effect, you can contact government officials by writing and letting them know the facts about this dire global situation, with all the information available on our website [SupremeMasterTV.com] for you to download and copy and send.146

        The government is aware. It is just perhaps the government is putting priority elsewhere. So, if you and other citizens are concerned, you could contact your government and write to them, inform them or remind them of the urgency of the situation that we and our future generations are facing.

        Write to your government leaders about the veg solution, go and visit with them, if that it possible. For leaders, they are aware of these grave problems facing their countries. Now, if the citizens also support them, remind them that they’re concerned and that this is for their best interests, then they will be even more energized to address climate change. Then they will remember that global warming is the most important agenda, that it’s their duty not only professionally, but also personally, because it affects themselves and their children as well.

        Write to the whole government, not just the president, because the president alone sometimes cannot easily make the decision. Write to whichever departments of the government you can. Everyone does it together. And then make many copies and send one each to the president, and the key departments for making the decision.

        Write a lot. Email to them, fax to them, write to them. Write to newspapers. Talk to radio. Talk to TV. Do interviews. Tell everybody you know. Try lobbying where you can. Talk to the leaders that you know. Talk to their friends, if you cannot know the leader, you talk to the leader’s friend, the leader’s family, the leader’s acquaintance, the leader’s waiter, waitress, housekeepers, cleaners, drivers, their family members, their children, the children who go to the same school as your children, their employees, their secretary, whoever you think can reach the leaders’ ears in an acceptable way.

        Should the leaders take some positive steps, then we should write to thank them also and encourage them. We should have positive encouragement. We have to encourage them when they do some right things and so they go further in that direction, or even better, improve.

        I wrote a letter to President Obama, I wrote a letter to the European Parliament, European Commissioner, and they answered me. They say they will take heed, take notice of what I said and my words, my advice, will be in their heart, in their mind, in the days ahead. I appreciate these kinds of leaders who do listen.

        Lead Grassroots Movements and the Vegan Trend

        Hold grassroots seminars. Offer evidence and information to the public about the solution to global warming. Join efforts with other vegetarians. By all working together, the fruits of labor are multiplied and the planet can be saved.

        As individuals and communities, we must take action instead of waiting for the government or the technology to be developed. It’s so simple. Just one solution: the compassionate diet, because compassion begets compassion. That’s a very simple law of the universe. Every action has a reaction. So, no need to wait for government policy approval process or financial resources and so on.

        On a more local level again, you can sponsor a cooking class. This will help people understand just how easy it is to cook delicious and nutritious veg meals for themselves and their families.

        I also had the idea of a chain of vegan restaurants that would serve fast, tasty, nutritious vegan dishes called Loving Hut; and it did come to fruition. There are many of them now. More than 90 [updated number: 138], in many different countries, Loving Hut restaurants are opened, from Formosa (Taiwan) to France to the United States to Australia.147 They open in busy places like shopping centers and main intersections.

        One of Supreme Master Ching Hai’s delicious vegan dishes featured
        on her special cooking show “A Gift of Love”
        SupremeMasterTV.com/gol; SupremeMasterTV.com/veg

        People can open vegan restaurants also, everyone. They don’t go for it necessarily because it’s vegan, but because they really think it’s just normal, great food or as the customers, young and old report, “Even better than meat!” So, by making vegan cuisine and products more accessible to people, it becomes a real alternative.

        Loving Hut, the fastest-growing international vegan restaurant chain inspired
        by Supreme Master Ching Hai wins VegNews Magazine’s 2010 Veggie
        Awards in the category: Favorite Restaurant (worldwide)

        People are trying to unite now to solve this urgent
        crisis. I see improvement and acceptance

        I see peace efforts, I see generous helping hands
        from all nations and individuals and groups and

        I see love growing in different ways.

        These signs might be still insignificant now, but they
        are like the sparks of fire, that will soon turn to
        mighty flames, that will cinder past ignorance and
        hatred, and making a new beginning of a nobler and
        saintlier race on Earth.

        Please think positive and keep doing what you can to
        awaken our neighbors. And keep dreaming of a
        heavenly world in our lifetime and continue to the
        next generations to come.

        We are together. We are fearless. We are strong.
        We are determined to change the world. We are
        courageous. We are with all humanity who wish
        for a peaceful, safe, loving world.

        And we all deserve it! Please continue.

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