Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mormons and Vegetarianism

(This was my response to an RFM post about Mormons and vegetarianism. I reflect a little on my experiences as a vegetarian in the church and reactions to this choice.)

My mother-in-law's reaction to learning about my husband and my new-found vegetarianism was a little like her reaction to learning the we weren't going to church anymore: she was horrified. This was before we'd stopped going to church. She told my husband off and said that God basically commanded us to eat meat. When my husband cited evidence from the WOW that mentioned eating meat sparingly, his mother waved it off and said that that's not what it actually meant. She said that she would never cook any differently for us when we came over, and was quite upset over our choice.

She did calm down later on, and now she'll almost always cook a vegetarian alternative for my husband and me when we come over. Oddly, my side of the family was completely accepting of our vegetarianism. I don't know why my MIL freaked out the way she did. I guess my husband's family is far more TBM than mine in ways, and this is one of them.

Which brings me to this thought: why is meat such a focal point of the LDS religion? I have never been to a Mormon gathering where a meal served didn't feature a meat dish as the main course. There were never, EVER (in my experience) vegetarian options at Mormon dinners. I always got the feeling that Mormons assumed that vegetarian members didn't exists, that vegetarians were too "liberal" to be among the numbers of the church. And yet, to my interpretation, the WOW clearly states to eat God's creatures only in times of famine. We aren't exactly in one of those times here in the US. Just another way the church doesn't practice what they preach, although many would argue what those verses in the WOW actually mean.

My husband and I have grown a little lax in our vegetarianism. We are more "meat reducers" now, eating a vegetarian diet in our own home but having meat now and then when we are at others' homes if it is offered. We're in a place where we are comfortable, though. Still, in a way, I think it was vegetarianism that allowed both of us to see the world differently, with eyes open to new ideas, in a way that helped pave the way for our exit from the church (my husband especially). It has been a good thing for us in many respects, especially in helping us to escape the cult.


Crystal :) said...

Boy do I relate to you and your blog!! Only I'm a 45yr old mother of 5 Card carrying member for 24 yrs! Trying to find my way out of this CRAZY church! NOT EASY!!! Here's my Anti testimony....I know with all my heart and everthing I am.......this is NOT the true church....thankyouverymuch!

Come back to this blog!! lol!!
your friend Crystal :)

Rachel Page said...

Cleansing/detoxification is optimized when we eat healthy foods the majority of the time.

fragrant breeze said...

for you