The Only Way to a Sustainable Planet: Be Vegan - Compilation of Supreme Master Ching Hai's lectures    Part 5
 
The Only Way to a Sustainable Planet: Be Vegan - Compilation of Supreme Master Ching Hai's lectures  Part 5
Part 1 Play with windows media
Part 2 Play with windows media
Part 3 Play with windows media
Part 4 Play with windows media
Part 5 Play with windows media
Hallo, Master Ching Hai. Hallo! Hallo! First of all, I would like to say that it’s my honor to have a chance to listen to Master Ching Hai’s words. I think we are at a turning point. We are at a point where we will have to face a dark future unless we change. In order to solve the problem, every sector in our society has been making many efforts. What I want to ask you is about our coping strategy.

It seems like civic organizations and academic institutes are leading the initiatives to stop global warming, but it seems like the government is lagging behind. For example, Seoul National University, which is a national institution, consumes one of the highest amounts of electricity. The energy consumption levels of government institutions are high as well. However, I think lowering our consumption level is not the only solution. I would like to ask your opinion about what the public sector, especially governments, should strive to achieve in terms of policy.

As I have mentioned before, we have to tackle the root of the problem. The root of the problem is the cause of global warming, and that root is our unkindness to our co-inhabitants. Every action provokes a reaction, and this is very scientific. You see, if we sow an apple seed, we will get an apple tree and from that apple tree, after a while, it will bear apple fruits for us. This is a circle of life. If we kill, we cannot expect life from it. Every action bears the same fruits afterwards. It’s not religious speaking, it is scientific. So, now, the root of our problem is that we have been unkind to our co-inhabitants - the living, feeling, walking, acting, loving beings, like animals, of all size and shapes - and we have also been unkind to our environment.

So, we have been massacring our co-inhabitant animals, and we have been destroying our environment, like deforesting and destroying the water and destroying the air. From all this, we cannot expect a better outcome. So, in order to solve the problem that we are facing right now, we have to reverse our actions. We have to be kind to our co-inhabitants. Instead of killing them, massacring them, sacrificing them, we have to take care of them, have to be kind to them, look after them. And instead of deforestation, we have to plant trees again, take care of whatever environment that we have.

And instead of polluting our planet, the air, we have to turn to friendly energy and sustainable energy. Just reverse our actions. I think we have to come together as a people to let the government know what we want. Write to the government, all of you, all of the people. The people have to understand, that the government also have their own problems, yes.

There’s no problem greater than saving our lives and the lives of the next generation. If everyone realized this, then we would drop everything else. Everything that is not useful to us, everything that is not kind and conducive to our living here and our next generation’s life, we have to change, we have to drop it. Drop it like a hot cake, like a hot potato, because it burns you. No matter what everyone else says, no matter how much you lose, you have to drop the hot plate, because it hurts you.

Global warming is like a hot plate, iron-hot burning plate. We must take care. If the government do not take care, the people just take care: just become vegetarian. Refuse all the animals products, then nobody will raise animals anymore, nobody will kill them anymore. Then we stop the physical, harmful effect of animal livestock raising, which is the number one cause for our climate change. And that’s the only one that we as individuals can immediately contribute. we can change it. No need to wait for the government. We do it.

The people have to take action and then perhaps the government will come along with it. If the government doesn’t lead you, you lead the government. There is no need to sit there blaming each other. But you see, it’s up to everyone to choose what they want. As I have told many times, God gives us free will. I respect that also. So, I can only inform, I can only give my opinion, but the people have to do it, because the people have God inside them.

They have wisdom, they have understanding. It’s just they have to choose to use it. Now, we have to do more than that, it’s not fast enough right now. It is urgent. You see, the killing of animals will be the killing of ourselves and our next generation. That is the fact. Like attracts like. What we sow so shall we reap. There’s no need to even talk about religious scriptures;

it’s just the fact like that. Thank you. Your question is very intelligent. I hope you spread the constructive news to your fellow students and more people. We need you.

With the emergence of the Asian economic powers including China and India and their increasing energy demands, what goals would you like to see such nations set in this regard?

I would imagine, of course, a Heaven on Earth. And to achieve this, it would be best for these energy spending countries to develop in a wise and sustainable way. They all know that already. The question is to put into practice the knowledge that we have already accumulated. They should set goals to use sustainable energy and minimize their greenhouse gas emissions in their industries, because every effort is worth the benefits to their citizens’ health, environment, and even the economy.

This is the true meaning of “prosperity.” Unfortunately, as countries develop, their demand for meat also increases as they can more easily afford it. However, this is extremely counterproductive because the demand for meat pushes up energy demands enormously, while worsening global warming. Raising animals is responsible for 80% of all greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture sector. Here are three reasons why these developing countries should also set no-meat and, instead, propagate the vegan lifestyle as their number one goal.

First, it’s to save energy for better purposes. Meat production is energy intensive and grossly energy inefficient. To produce 1 kilogram of beef consumes 169 megajoules of energy, or enough energy to drive an average European car for 250 kilometers! One 6-ounce beef steak costs 16 times – 16 times! – as much fossil fuel energy as one vegan meal containing three kinds of vegetables and rice. The UN IPCC’s chair, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, further points out that meat requires constant refrigerated transportation and storage, the growing and transportation of the animals’ food, a lot of packaging, a lot of cooking at high temperatures for long periods, and a whole lot of animal waste products that also need to be processed and disposed of.

Meat production is so costly and inefficient, so unsustainable that it is bad business to produce meat. Second, besides energy, precious land, food and water resources– already scarce in these very countries – are also wasted or degraded to unacceptable degrees. One study in India found that to produce 1 kilogram of beef requires 7 kilograms of grain for feed - instead of direct human consumption - while yielding less than one-third the amount of protein. The poor are bound to suffer from hunger. And, overall, increased meat consumption has always been correlated with jumps in chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, whereas before that, these ills were virtually unknown.

Finally, one reason why developing countries should say no to meat production and consumption is that by turning to the plant-based diet, they will gain invisible benefits as well. In India and China, it is already taught in their traditions, in the law of ahimsa – meaning nonviolence – and the law of karma, which says “as you sow, so shall you reap,” meaning, by turning to the virtuous, compassionate diet of vegan alone, they would generate such a positive, constructive energy. This new, loving power could even stop the effects of climate change in their vulnerable lands and open up people’s innovative thought to solve all manner of economical, social, and technological problems. And every country, whether developed or developing, will flourish in ways beyond our imagination. I promise it is true.
We’ve been seeing more religious and spiritual groups emphasizing the importance of green living in accordance of our role as stewards of the planet, as mentioned in many holy scriptures, such as the Pope. He recently spoke on the urgency of climate change. Master, could you explain further the importance of the spiritual factor in halting global warming in comparison to the other factors such as science or technology that the general public is focusing on?

A true spiritual practice goes with compassion and love for all beings. This is the core of a sustainable world. If we have this, we will have peace, love, harmony, security, health and clear mindedness. Only then can we truly enjoy whatever comforts science and technology bring into our life. Just to rely on and focus on science and technology alone will not help us too much; or maybe even if it helps it’s just temporarily and short-lived. True spiritual life brings us in direct contact with the creative force of the universe, which supports and sustains life. All things spring from this creative power, including scientific and technological inventions. Otherwise, we just water the leaves and not the root, if we rely only on science and technology.

The whole world is now in economic recession with higher unemployment. Is it the right time to encourage the use of self-sustainable, simple organic farming techniques? Should we return to a more simple way of agriculture and encourage a loving plant-based diet? Sir.

Yes. In fact, we hosted in Cebu, in the Central Philippines, last September, the Asia Pacific Conference on Sustainable Production and Sustainable Consumption. We were not talking about long-term development, as we pursue under the umbrella of the United Nations pursuant to the UN’s Earth Agenda 21, Agenda for the 21st century. But we discussed very short-term measures, in Cebu, that have to do with producing with total efficiency. A certain item needed by human beings must be the result of maximum efficiency so that nothing is wasted.

At the same time, we must also change our patterns of consumption. Again I go back to my simple model in our own home of eating everything on your plate and drinking every bit of water in your glass. Because we must think all the time about the 51% of the world’s people who do not have enough to eat. They do not get three meals a day as you and I do, or eight glasses of water. Maybe the food they may eat is coming from garbage because they have to scavenge from the garbage can, the food that they must eat. They have nothing else.

And maybe the water they’re drinking is dirty water, just drawn or picked up from the nearby river which is already so polluted. So this is the condition of the majority of the world today. The UN says that more than half of the world’s people are earning the equivalent of US$1 a day. That’s what? - 47 Philippine pesos or 35, 34 New Taiwan dollars; it’s so small as an average. And, therefore, it’s our responsibility who are more comfortable – and this is said in the Bible and also in the Qu’ran and in the Holy Book of the Jewish nations – that it is our responsibility to prosper our neighbors if they are needy, (That’s right.) if they are in want, if they are poor, if they are suffering, if they are deprived, if they are disadvantaged. We must look around us and see how the rest of the community are doing, are living, are existing.

And surely, we all have neighbors who are very much more in need than we are right now where we are. So, let’s have a thought next time we sit down for a meal for those people out there who are not getting much on a daily basis. There are many countries where the average food intake is 3,500 calories, when what is needed is maybe for that age group is 2,500 calories. The rest of it is thrown away as garbage. And then maybe some people from the same country, from the same community, look through the garbage where that food was thrown to get their daily meal.

This is, to me, inhuman already. So, the practical means of making sure that we consume wisely and produce wisely, is to be simpler, to be more efficient and to be totally cooperative. What happens to those that eat at the rate of 3,500 calories a day? They become overweight. They overwork their hearts, their cardiovascular system does not flow efficiently because of high cholesterol blockage, and they cannot exercise very much anymore because they become lazy. They feel sleepy instead of being fit and energetic like Supreme Master Ching Hai. She’s all over, and she shows it, and the results of her advocacies. Thank you.

And her humanitarian activities are evident everywhere. (Thank you.) Seventeen centers here in Formosa (Taiwan) alone and so many more outside. And so, each of us has a responsibility to last as long as possible on Earth so that we continue to be able to help our neighbors. In other words, we must also exist, survive, work not for ourselves or for our immediate families, but also for others.

This is why our foundation has adopted a very simple motto, three words: Caring, Sharing, and Daring. Caring and sharing, very easy to do, but daring is so much more difficult because that means daring to give more than to take, meaning daring also to enhance the environment instead of abusing it. Daring also means to take united action, as people, as families, as nations, for the common good. And maybe just as important, daring in order to make a difference. So, it all adds up to what this center is all about, and it also, in equal manner, is what our own foundation is trying to do. Thank you! Thank you, sir! Thank you, sir! You are very daring, sir, also. You are really doing what you preach.

Back many years ago, when the whole world said that the Aulacese (Vietnamese) refugees must go home, nobody wanted to accept them anymore, you are the only one that went against that trend, that you could have offended other nations, you could have offended other leaders, but you did it. You just let them stay in the Philippines because you are daring and you are the man of your word, and that’s why we respect you so much. It’s easy to say, not easy to do. You are the doer. And we are so honored to know you in this lifetime. You are a very good example of a true man. Thank you for being with us on this planet.

Dear Master, (Hi!) could you share with us also some insight on the same topic? I will just chip in. Thank you. I will just pick up what the leftover, maybe, or emphasize what the President has already said. You see, maybe some of you don’t know, in 1995 even, long time ago, President Ramos already talked about environmental protection. I’m sure he has done way before that, but as he wasn’t the President, maybe his voice wasn’t all that publicized.

But in 1995, I remember there was a conference on Population, Environment and Peace, and the President emphasized that “there is a need, a real need, for a sustainable balance,” if I quote it right, “a sustainable balance between man and nature, between development and the environment.” You see? So President Ramos was very protective of the environment long before it became even a trend nowadays. His foresight, wisdom has exceeded far beyond our present vision of the world climate change. He knew it before that. He saw it before that. So, I think organic farming would satisfy this need that the president has mentioned back in even 1995, before we even made this global warming into a so-called “fashionable trend.”

The President has said that there is a need for a sustainable balance between man and nature, between development and the environment. I think the need will be satisfied with all the farmers changing to the organic farming method. In that case, we will be able to balance the need between our development and the environment, our need and a sustainable planet.
In 1995, I remember there was a conference on Population, Environment and Peace, and the President emphasized that “there is a need, a real need, for a sustainable balance,” if I quote it right, “a sustainable balance between man and nature, between development and the environment.” You see? So President Ramos was very protective of the environment long before it became even a trend nowadays. His foresight, wisdom has exceeded far beyond our present vision of the world climate change. He knew it before that. He saw it before that. So, I think organic farming would satisfy this need that the president has mentioned back in even 1995, before we even made this global warming into a so-called “fashionable trend.”

The President has said that there is a need for a sustainable balance between man and nature, between development and the environment – . I think the need will be satisfied with all the farmers changing to organic farming method. In that case, we will be able to balance the need between our development and the environment, our need and a sustainable planet. The benefit of organic farming is immense, including great advantages to both human health and the environment. Organic farming actually restores the topsoil and cleans the air and water supplies even.

It is so much more beneficial that we could not list them all in a few minutes. It is even good for animals, all beings on this planet, including even trees and land, in part because it does not use chemical fertilizer or pesticides, many of which are considered by the United States Environment Protection Agency and the European Union to be potentially cancer-causing, and also depleting of our bees’ colonies and killing many others animals that we cannot even all name here.

One of the US studies indicate that if the United States’ 8 million acres of produce farms went organic, then the risk of consuming dietary pesticides would be reduced by 97%. Can you imagine? Chemical fertilizer and pesticide runoff are also known to contribute to the ocean dead zones. We are killing our planet by pesticides and chemical fertilizer. Now, scientific studies have found that organic farming not only reduces energy usage and produces less CO2, which helps lower greenhouse gases, but it actually allows the soil to absorb even 40% of presently-in-the-air CO2 emission.

Before we even invent any technology to reduce CO2, or before we even reduce all the cars and transportations, if we go organic we reduce 40% of the current CO2 in the air already, and the daily emission. And, furthermore, organic produce is free of genetically modified organisms, and its nutrient content is actually higher than that of conventional grown fruit and vegetables. It is for these reasons that we in our group use as much organic produce as much as possible.

First, to encourage the organic farming to develop and progress and prosper more into a better trend for everyone to enjoy. Second, of course, is for our planet, and third, for our health and all that on this planet. I wish that all the governments in the world would encourage organic farming to save our world. Give them subsidies, give them all the facilitated means in order for the farmer to continue their organic farming method because it’s not only helping them, it’s helping the planet and all the people. I am sure if the governments support organic farming, it will be a trend in no time.

If the governments lead the way with the message that this is how to be green and how to protect the planet, then the farmers would be happy to grow more vegan food. To spread the practice of organic farming would help in so many ways. The benefit of organic farming for human livelihood, for human health, and for animals’ health, natural resources and protection of our planet - all these benefits we cannot even underestimate, we cannot even estimate all in here. Organic farming not only helps to protect the planet, it will even help to eliminate hunger. So, I just suggest vegan organic, or organic vegan.

Humankind is trying really hard to change. If unfortunately these efforts are not quick enough to save Earth, then what will be the fate of the Earth’s population? And how is the environment? Thank you very much.

Thank you, thank you. Thank you for coming here with us again. Yes, Dr. Nguyễn, thank you for caring. I know that there are many, many people who are making the effort to change. And all the green developments, like the sustainable energy technologies and water-saving technologies, these are also very good. It’s just that they will not accomplish the goal of saving the planet quickly enough. The rapid rate at which the planet is warming can be seen from many examples, one of which is the melting of the Arctic ice. A recent report released by the United States National Snow and Ice Data Center found that the rate of Arctic ice melt has been speeding up dramatically, with a shrinkage during the month of July equal to 41,000 square miles each day.

Meanwhile, Canadian researchers have already forecast that the entire Arctic ice cap would be gone within a couple of decades, maybe quicker. As the ice disappears, global warming accelerates because of losing the reflective white cover provided by the ice. The scientists also reported that Arctic tundra temperatures have been rising 1 degree Celsius each decade, which is faster than anywhere else in the world, and that the tundra itself is emitting significantly more methane and nitrous oxide than previously estimated. This is a dangerous situation, apart from what we are already having.

How do we stop this? The most effective way, and the way that truly works, is be veg, be vegan. Stop the use of all animal products and the globe will quickly cool down. We can still continue developing all the other green technologies, after the planet is saved and we have time, which are very good in helping restore parts of the overall planetary balance. But the first and foremost must be the veg diet. And with that approach, we are working toward being able to save the world, because the switch to the animal-free diet removes all the methane production and its associated pollutants – to say nothing of the animal cruelty – will help reverse these planetary disasters, such as the tsunamis, the floods, storms, typhoons and the landslides, etc., etc. So, Dr. Nguyễn, in order to help the environment and save lives, we first must be veg.

You see, it’s up to humans to choose, to decide . And we should decide to live. We should decide that we can do anything at all in our power to preserve our lives on the planet. Because it’s not just one life or two lives, just not my life or your life - it’s the life of the children and the next generation. Just to have this beautiful planet and we destroy it, it is very, very pitiful.

We have to decide different way, we have to walk a different way, that’s it. We have to decide that, “Okay, we’re going to be courageous. We do whatever it takes.” But it doesn’t take much, just to be vegetarian, just to plant a couple of trees each person and just to use the sustainable free energy. That’s all there is, three simple steps. Refrain from animals.

Of course, I mean also killing by war, but the number we kill in war is not as many as the mass killing in animal slaughtering. You know that yourself. So it’s only very simple: refrain from killing each other and animals for any reason – for food, for profit, for gain, for anything at all. Refrain from killing. Produce and use sustainable energy, plant trees. We can have everything, we just do that . Yes. Not like we have to do big deal stuff. No, very simple. The sun is there for us to use forever, the wind is there forever, the waves in the ocean we can use forever. It will never be finished.

Compared to other energy that maybe you’ll have today, you don’t have tomorrow and maybe you’ll even have to make war to take it. The sun, you don’t have to. Nobody can possess the sun. Nobody can stop you from using it. So, very simple: vegetarian, sustainable energy, plant trees and, of course, we pray so that we be strong and Heaven will help us to choose the right way. That’s all, four solutions, very easy, everybody can do it.
Refrain from killing each other and animals for any reason – for food, for profit, for gain, for anything at all. Refrain from killing. Produce and use sustainable energy, plant trees. We can have everything, we just do that. Yes. Not like we have to do big deal stuff. No, very simple. The sun is there for us to use forever, the wind is there forever, the waves in the ocean we can use forever. It will never be finished.

Compared to other energy that maybe you’ll have today, you don’t have tomorrow and maybe you’ll even have to make war to take it. The sun, you don’t have to. Nobody can possess the sun. Nobody can stop you from using it. So, very simple: vegetarian, sustainable energy, plant trees and, of course, we pray so that we be strong and Heaven will help us to choose the right way. That’s all, four solutions, very easy, everybody can do it.

If we want a peaceful life, a long life or whatever, healthy life, we must let live, must not eat the animals, must eat vegetarian. That’s it. The more vegetarian the better. Vegan is even better, organic vegan is even better because vegetables have less impact on the environment even, less pollution for the environment. Well, we have collected many of these information and put it on the Supreme Master Television for you to compare and know right away. Everything is logical.

Everything is scientifically proven, materially proven. It’s not like I ask you to believe something I said but, “Oh okay, you believe it or not, it’s up to you.” Oh no. We have proof. So now, we have to combine the spiritual aspect and the hard physical fact, then everybody will understand. But I just hope they act on it. I mean, not just understand but have to do action. If the world turns to vegetarian, we are saved, immediately – there is no problem at all. Just be vegetarian, truly, then the world will be saved.

There will be no more disaster, no disease – or very minimum, almost nothing. If everybody becomes vegetarian – vegan is even better – then no more disease, no more disaster, no more trouble at all. Everybody lives healthily and then, in turn, happily. When you’re healthy, you’re happy, and marriage also improves, everything improves, and then the mind improves and then we can invent many things that we could never imagine we could invent. You see, when we heard a lot about UFO and other extra-terrestrials where they’re intelligent and they make a lot of inventions and all that – that we cannot know. We just turn into vegan, clean our mind, purifying our being, then we can invent something like that or even better.

Right now people are eating too much meat and drinking too much alcohol and taking too much drugs and cigarettes and they clouded their intelligence. So, even if they want to use the whole brain capacity, it’s already difficult, not to talk about any other highly inventive method and/or apparatus. Because we don’t use the brain even, not to talk about spiritual, nothing yet. Don’t use enough brain. There’s a whole treasure of capacity within us. Even with the brain, we can use it more, but too busy eating, drinking, clouding the mind and making the body sick, cannot even think well – drinking the alcohol to even shrink the brain further.

Already don’t use a lot of it and shrink more the brain. Can you imagine? What kind of logic is this? I mean, any intelligent person would stop it. Right? Just like you’re burning your money in the bank. Like, you have money, you put it in a safe box. Not only you don’t take out to use it to benefit your body, make your life more comfortable and benefit your family, you burden it every day more! This is the life that many people live and they think that it’s okay with it. How okay? How can it be okay?

So, you are lucky people. You are smart. Yes, you’re smart enough. At least you don’t destroy yourself any further. And the body has a capacity of repairing itself. If you leave it alone, the body repairs, see? That’s why some people, after initiation and don’t eat meat anymore, their body repairs – even cancer disappears, heart disease stops, and lung disease, many things just stop because the body can repair. It’s just if you keep beating it up, how can it repair? Even the tree can repair itself, the little plant repairs itself – you saw it.

You plant a little peppermint, very small peppermint and then when he grows, you pluck a few leaves. Tomorrow he grows three, four more leaves. You see? Just a plant, so small like that and knows how to repair, how much more would our intelligent body, equipped with sophisticated system, repair itself? The Earth also can repair herself if we let her rest. If we just take what we need and not because of greed, then the Earth will be okay.

That’s why I’m telling you, if people are vegetarian and do not abuse the Earth anymore… because raising animals is abusive to the Earth. The Earth cannot supply enough. We take more than she can give and repair. We just keep digging into it and sooner or later, it’s depleted. So, it is logical that if you use a vegetarian or vegan diet, this is more sustainable for the Earth. I don’t even talk about the spiritual aspect. It’s just logic. So, if we stop all this killing of animals, and raising animals stops, then we will have no disaster, and that is for sure; and that is very normal and very logical. So, I hope people truly understand this and practice it, and then we’ll be saved, your children will be saved, their children will be saved, their great grand children will continue to live an even better life than what we have right now or what our great grandfather had.

Because the Earth will be better and their life will be better because they will have the beneficial diet, they will have the healthy diet and they become more healthy and then more intelligent and more happy than what we have been through or what we have been doing and what we have been experiencing. Our children will be better, will have a better Earth, better life, more intelligent than we are. If the whole Earthling population turns to the vegetarian diet, then the animals will also turn to the vegetarian diet. Mark my words.
With diverse flora and fauna, magnificent natural landscapes, and an ecological biosphere that supports life, this wondrous planet is our earthly home.

From our animal co-inhabitants to the lush rainforests and life-giving soil, we cherish all these as gifts from the Creator.  It is a common theme in the world’s major faiths that during our temporary stay here, we should be good stewards of Mother Earth. Throughout the years, Supreme Master Ching Hai has shared the message of leading a balanced life while following a spiritual path.

Not only must we nourish our spirits, but we share the responsibility to care for nature and our fellow beings. In light of recent scientific evidence which pinpoint the raising of livestock as the number one contributor to climate change, Supreme Master Ching Hai affirms the important message she has noted for over the past two decades:we must be vegan and practice sustainable living.

Today we present to you a compilation of excerpts from Supreme Master Ching Hai’s lectures titled “The Only Way to a Sustainable Planet:Be Vegan.”

email to friend E-mail this to a Friend