Spiritual Gurus & Diet

In Advice Column, July 2017 by Jenna Davila

Dear Jenna,
Many spiritual gurus don’t eat a raw or even vegan diet and seem to be in touch with their higher self but you speak about our light body being nourished by a plant based, non-violent diet. Can you explain how some people are able to thrive mentally and physically on a diet that includes animal products?Anonymous

Hello there!

Thank you for your questions!

A diet is just one component that can greatly help us with our spiritual journey. Our symbiotic relationship, give and take, with Nature is the Divine Spirit of Infinite Intelligence. The deeper our connection is to nature, the more one can feel the presence and communion of Creation itself. Opening one’s heart to nature is opening the heart to the flow of the Universe. Recognising this relationship and diving into it with diet begins awakening “new” wisdom from within. With that being said, there are people who have the diet down but are not spiritual and on the other hand, there will be people who are spiritual but still consume animal products. It all depends on where their focus lies and how they want to move forward in their life. We must remember that people need to figure out on their own what their balance is between spirituality and human life. Each person will have a unique and different way of going about things.

I think it is important to understand that just because a person, guru or spiritual leader doesn’t have a non-violent diet in their life doesn’t mean that they cannot be connected to their spirituality. Diet is just one key aspect to the collective. Anyone who dedicates their life to spiritual practices can absolutely tap into the Divine flow that is their birthright. Also, diet does not determine what kind of person someone is. If someone is not vegan, that doesn’t mean they do not have a good heart, good intents or merit. It does not mean that they can’t be in touch with the wisdom and knowledge within them. You can find something valuable from multiple teachers that resonate with you regardless of diet. People can be spiritual in a vast amount of ways. Also, please be aware that not one person has all the answers.  There can be some very pivotal points missing but overall their teachings can be great.  Maybe there is a teacher that you deeply connect with but there are a few things that don’t feel right to you. Always go with your own intuition and use your discernment. Try not to ever put someone up on a pedestal. Remember, they are just people like everyone else; this is just something to be mindful about.

Eastern spirituality encourages vegetarianism but it is not a strict rule. This also applies to some Tibetan Buddhist or specific temples. Some temples will only serve vegan or vegetarian meals but what people do outside of the temple is up to them. More so than not, I have personally found that spiritual people tend to at least refrain from eating meat or eat it very seldomly. If we look at the core of the Sanskrit word ahimsa which means “non-injury,” it can have multidimensional concepts attached to it. It is to not cause pain, harm or suffering to any living, sentient being. It also means kindness, respect and unity that all things are connected. Please remember that every time we eat, we are making an exchange. We have to be aware of the impact of our choices, not only for ourselves but for other living beings. I suggest looking up Matthieu Ricard PhD, dubbed ‘The Happiest Man in the World’, who is a Buddhist monk who went from a scientific career as a molecular biologist in France to the study of Buddhism in the Himalayas 45 years ago. He has some wonderful videos and information on this topic. Doreen Virtue is another great source of spirituality and veganism, I suggest Eating in the Light. Dr. Will Tuttle, a former Zen monk, wrote a great book, The World Peace Diet which I suggest, along with Conscious Eating by international spiritual teacher Gabriel Cousens M.D. as well as books by Anthony William, Guru Singh, Thich Nhat Hanh, Sri Ram Kaa and Kira Raa.

As with everything in life, you will always find polarity. You will find gurus and spiritual leaders who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet and you will find those who don’t for their own reasons which can range vastly. You can absolutely find just as many gurus and spiritual leaders on either side of the coin. Food can be very personal in regards to human psychology. Humans can become very accustomed to eating a certain way and it can be strictly out of habit or sense of comfort. To dive into your question even deeper about thriving mentally and physically on a diet that includes animal products, well how does anyone do this?  The human body and mind are constantly doing their best with what they are dealt with. We can never truly know what someone is going through in their day to day life unless we personally know them and have an open communication with them. I believe it to be unfair to make assumptions about a person’s health and wellbeing without truly knowing them or what is going on in their inner world. I do believe in the power of thought but, of course, it matters what you put into your body. Diet most certainly plays a role in the health of the human body, some even say up to 90-95%.  I would recommend looking to epigenetics which through diet, we have the ability to turn off or on disease by altering cells.

One of the most important things we can do in this life is to take care of our home that our Spirit is hosted. When it comes to the food we eat, we have to think about how digestion, transportation and assimilating play a role. What we consume should do these processes with a minimal amount of resistance the body is designed for. Now if we look animals, they are complex, sentiment beings with real lives of their own. They have feelings, emotions, memories and families. This complex energy that makes up their being will never breakdown 100% within the human body during consumption, especially spiritually. Whatever life we are ingesting, we are making it a part of own lives in some form or another. By acknowledging this, one can most certainly take their own own growth, expansion and spirituality to the next level by adopting a Karma-free diet and lifestyle. It is much easier to ascend when our food choices align with our Spirit, light body and the physiology of the human body itself. If we look at the core of the Sanskrit word ahimsa which means “non-injury,” it can have multidimensional concepts attached to it. It is to not cause pain, harm or suffering to any living, sentient being. It also means kindness, respect and unity that all things are connected. Please remember that every time we eat, we are making an exchange. We have to be aware of the impact of our choices, not only for ourselves but for other living beings. With that being said, I honor whatever food choices you make because it is your birthright. Everyone is on their own path and I absolutely respect the flow of your life. I just like to share and inspire others to think outside the box when it comes to energy and our Divinity.

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Disclaimer: The advice offered in this column is intended for informational purposes only. Use of this column not intended to replace or substitute for any professional, financial, medical, legal, or other professional advice. If you have specific concerns or a situation in which you require professional, psychological or medical help, you should consult with an appropriately trained and qualified specialist. The opinions or views expressed in this column are not intended to treat or diagnose; nor are they meant to replace the treatment and care that you may be receiving from a licensed professional, physician or mental health professional. This column, its author and the website are not responsible for the outcome or results of following any advice in any given situation. You, and only you, are completely responsible for your actions.

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Every month, Jenna Davila answers questions regarding physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being on the Live Pure website.  You can submit your questions for next month’s column here!

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