RELIGION, ANIMALS AND PEACE
“The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and a little child shall lead them…
They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my hold mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord,
as the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11:6-9
“There is no religion without love, and people may talk as much as they like about their religion, but if it does not teach them to be good and kind to beasts as well as man it is all a sham.” Anna Sewell, Black Beauty.
“As long as man continues to be the ruthless destroyer of lower livings beings, he will never know health or peace. For as long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seed of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love.” Pythagoras
“Animals, as part of God’s creation, have rights which must be respected. It behooves us always to be sensitive to their needs and to the reality of their pain.” Dr. Donald Coggan, former Archbishop of Canterbury.
“’Thou shalt not kill’ does not apply to murder of one’s own kind only, but to all living beings; and this Commandment was inscribed in the human breast long before it was proclaimed from Sinai.” Count Leo Tolstoy
“Animals are God’s creatures. He surrounds them with his providential care. By their mere existence they bless him and give him glory. Thus men owe them kindness. We should recall the gentleness with which saints like St. Francis of Assisi or St. Philip Neri treated animals. Catholic Catechism (2416)
“Ahimsa-paramo-dharmah” - non-injury to living beings is the highest religion. Jainism
“There is not an animal on the earth, nor a flying creature on two wings, but they are people like unto you.” Islam. Qur’an
“Because he has pity on every living creature, therefore is a man called ‘holy’”. Buddhism Dhammapada
“What is religion? Compassion for all things, which have life.” Hinduism. Hitopadesa
“Life is as dear to the mute creature as it is to a man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not to die, so do other creatures.” The XIV Dalai Lama of Tibet. The Vegetarian Way, 1967.
“Respect the old and cherish the young. Even insects, grass and trees you must not hurt”. T’ai-shang kan-ying p’ien, a Confucian-Taoist treatise. Attributed to: Ko Hung
“This much we know. The earth does not belong to man; Man belongs to the earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.” Chief Seattle, American Indian
“Until he extends the circle of his compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace.” Albert Schweitzer
“For hundreds of thousands of years the stew in the pot has brewed hatred and resentment that is difficult to stop. If you wish to know why there are disasters of armies and weapons in the world, listen to the piteous cries from the slaughter house at midnight.” Ancient Chinese verse
“We cannot have peace among men whose hearts find delight in killing any living creature.” Rachel Carson, Silent Spring
“Having well considered the origin of flesh foods. And the cruelty of fettering and slaying corporeal beings let man entirely abstain from eating flesh.” Manusmriti 5.49. Hinduism.
“And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat; and it was so”. Genesis 1:29, 30.
“We should remember in our dealings with animals that they are a sacred trust to us from our Heavenly Father. They are dumb and cannot speak for themselves” Harriet Beecher Stowe
“Not to hurt our humble brethren is our first duty to them, but to stop there is not enough. We have a higher mission- to be of service to them wherever they require it. ”St. Francis of Assisi. Quoted in Life by St. Bonaventure
“I want to realize brotherhood or identity not merely with the beings called human, but I want to realize identity with all life, even with such things as crawl upon earth.” Mahatma Gandhi
“And the flesh of the slain beasts in his body will become his own tomb. For I tell you truly, he who kills, kills himself and he who eats the flesh of slain beasts, eats the body of death.” The Essene Gospel of Peace
“For that which befalleth the sons of men, befalleth beasts, … As one dieth so dieth the other. Yet they have all one breath. So that a man hath no pre-eminence over a beast”. Ecclesiastes 3:19
“We may pretend to what religion we please, but cruelty is atheism. We may make our boast of Christianity; but cruelty is infidelity. We may trust our orthodoxy, but cruelty is the worst of heresies.” Humphry Primatt. Dissertation on the Duty of Mercy. and the Sin of Cruelty to Brute Animals .Pg. 288.
“How can I teach your children gentleness and mercy to the weak, and reverence for life, which in its nakedness and excess, is still a gleam of God’s omnipotence, when by your laws, your actions and your speech, you contradict the very things I teach?” Henry W. Longfellow
“The obligations of law and equity reach only to mankind; but kindness and beneficence should be extended to the creatures of every species, and these will flow from the breast of a true man, as streams that issue from the living fountain.” Plutarch
“Is not the sky a father and the earth a mother, and are not all living things with feet or wings or roots their children?; Hear me, four quarters of the world…a relative I am! Give me the strength to walk the soft earth, a relative to all that is,… all over the earth, the faces of living things are all alike.” John G. Neihardt in Black Elk Speaks (American Indian)
“To try to picture the Christ, the one whom Christians call ‘Agnus Dei’, the Lamb of God, chewing on a leg of lamb seems incongruous to me.” Elizabeth Farians
“Non-violence begins with the fork”. Elizabeth Frians
“Let us, each one,
Dance lightly with the living earth
One’s self-body and mind
Each person and all peoples
All of the animals and every sentient being ,
The environment and every living thing.”
“May you and every living thing be embraced in the arms of compassion..” Elizabeth Farians
“Justice requires a thoroughgoing revision of our treatment of animals (and) historical theology creatively expounded also requires this”. Andrew Linzey, Animal Theology, Intro.
“…universal religious thought promotes universal compassion. and condemns the opposite-the unnecessary slaughter of animals-as fundamentally irreligious” .Steven Rosen. Diet for Transcendence, Intro.
“All that we do to other species is spiritual preparation for our interpersonal relationships.” Jon Wynne Tyson. The Extended Circle. ,Intro.
Animals, People and the Earth