Join the World Peace Diet

image of sign in Tennessee mountains

Photo: Lookout Mountain, Tennessee by J. Wilder Bill

When we heal the earth, We heal ourselves. David Orr

The World Peace Diet is painless to practice. Devised by Will Tuttle, Ph.D., the visionary speaker, educator, author, and musician shares the impact the foods we consume has on not only our physical bodies, but also on our spiritual well-being. Dr. Will Tuttle emphasizes the significance our dietary choices make in influencing worldwide harmony. He provides innovative insights of the philosophical masters and the patterns mankind has followed throughout history and he shares the meaning behind his words in this interview.

J. Wilder:

You provide a full description of Plato’s theories regarding the benefits of people adopting an animal free diet. Why did some of Plato’s knowledge regarding science remain public while his information about adopting a vegan lifestyle vanished from available books? 

Dr. Tuttle:

Actually, in The World Peace Diet, I discuss several ancient Greek & Roman philosophers who all advocated a vegan diet and lifestyle – Pythagoras, Plato, Plotinus, and Plutarch. Pythagoras is considered the father of vegetarianism and vegan living in our Western world, and until the mid 1800s vegetarians were referred to as Pythagoreans. Pythagoras emphasized the spiritual, social, and health benefits of a plant-based diet, and warned people who if they killed animals for food, they would also kill each other in wars. These important ideas are more vital now than ever, and form the foundation of The World Peace Diet. Plato (like his teacher Socrates) was in many ways a Pythagorean and taught that herding livestock led to conflicts over land and to warfare. Plotinus was a neo-Platonist and strong advocate of compassion to animals, as was Plutarch, a Roman historian.

Their ideas have been covered over simply because they make people in our culture uncomfortable with what is their most basic behavior: eating food. This is unfortunate, of course, because if these teachings were heeded by us today, we would be able to reduce the many diseases caused by eating animal foods, as well as the environmental devastation that is unavoidable in growing vast amounts of grain and legumes and feeding them to animals who are hyper-confined, mutilated, and killed at the rate of 75 million per day in the U.S. alone. People are starving and malnourished, and it’s completely unnecessary, and all this slaughter is similarly unnecessary, and the war and inequity that flows from it as well.

J. Wilder:

In The World Peace Diet, you posit a hidden and powerful core mentality in our culture – what is that?

Dr. Tuttle:

All of us are born into a culture that injects into us from infancy a program that forces us to look with eyes that see certain beings as things – as commodities that exist merely to be killed and eaten. This mentality of reducing beings to things—commoditization of life—is devastating to our inherent intelligence, sensitivity, and compassion. It leads to a mentality of exclusion, elitism, might-makes-right, privilege, and disconnectedness. It is this mentality that is injected into us through our three daily meals, where we are all forced to participate in rituals in which sentient beings are reduced to mere flesh and secretions. We are forced to eat them, thus internalizing this mentality that is totally contrary to our well-being and the well-being of the Earth and of other animals. By far the most intelligent, creative, caring, and aware action that any human being in our culture can engage in is to extricate themselves from this toxic and destructive program, and switch to a plant-based way of eating and living, out of compassion to the whole web of life in which we are all embedded. This is the foundation of joy, peace, abundance, wisdom, health, and happiness for all.

J. Wilder:

According to your studies, people initially consumed fruit, nuts and leaves. What prompted humans to deviate from his healthful diet?

Dr. Tuttle:

No one knows the answer to this question. We don’t even know what happened in history, much less in pre-history! What happened on 9//11? Who killed JFK? What happened just a few days or years ago? We don’t know! What we have are “official stories” that are created for our consumption in order to keep everyone enslaved to a system of domination and ignorance, where we are willing to work in jobs that rob us of our precious time and resources, and imprison us in the ignorance of separateness, willing to fight wars and eat animals and destroy the Earth without comprehending our true purpose on this Earth.

Today, we can see that we are designed for plant-based foods, and whatever reasons people have had in the past for eating animal foods (which I discuss at length in The World Peace Diet), we can easily see that it is terrible for our physical, psychological, cultural, ecological, and spiritual health. Any one of us can prove this in our own lives as well!

So rather than look too much to the past, I think it’s a great idea to be pulled by the future. Let’s envision an abundant, peaceful, creative, and joyful future, and base our behavior on reaching that, rather than trying to figure out how we should be driven by a past that we will never completely know or understand (at least until we go vegan and awaken our latent wisdom)!

J. Wilder: 

Your information regarding how humans transitioned from being peaceful gatherers and gardeners to being aggressive figures who dominate and own living creatures as property provides a clear image of how our diet and its required mentality impacts our emotional stability. In what ways would humankind improve if we resisted eating animal products?

Dr. Tuttle:

By ceasing to eat animal foods, we begin the process of extricating ourselves out of the pervasive program of violence and reductionism that ensnares our culture in ignorance and war. The mentality required to reduced beings to mere objects of property is the essence of the problem, and by rejecting that, we open the door of the prison that we are in. Anyone of us can do this at any time! Going vegan is actually just the first step out of the prison. We are called by our inherent wisdom to shed all the layers of violence, fear, and delusion that cover the light of pure consciousness that we truly are. Going vegan is the first essential step, and it means adopting an attitude of radical inclusion whereby we cultivate respect and kindness for all beings, both human and animal. This is the essence of the inner work that is the foundation of transforming our lives and our world. As I say in The World Peace Diet, we cannot build a tower of love with bricks of cruelty. As we eat and act and relate with kindness and love, we build a body, emotions, and life of harmony and freedom.

J. Wilder:

The quote by Benjamin Franklin captured the experiences of many vegans with regard to attending social gatherings with the commitment to avoid consuming animal foods. Do vegans benefit spiritually by standing firm on their beliefs even when it causes strife within their communities? 

Dr. Tuttle:

It is quite humorous to say that vegans are causing strife within their communities by not going along with the meals and attitudes of exclusion, oppression, and mindless violence that are required by animal foods. As vegans, we are bystanders to the horrific violence perpetrated by people who take out their wallets and pay for animal-sourced foods. We are witnessing and questioning the unnecessary cruelty toward animals, and any “strife” we cause is the precious energy of liberation that will help both the perpetrators and the animals become free from this devastating situation. If we are doing our jobs well, we are causing significant cognitive dissonance by providing examples of people who are not afraid to be kind and to lovingly speak the truth about the interconnectedness of all life. Through this we can transform our world!

J. Wilder:

The observation that consuming dead animals kills the person who swallowed the flesh provides a vegan solution to many medical ailments. In what ways would world economy benefit from the decrease in physical disease and deterioration?

Dr. Tuttle:

If people stopped eating animal foods, our economy would be enormously blessed. The way it’s set up now, there is a small, wealthy elite that is enriching itself at the expense of people, animals, and the Earth. All are abused and becoming more diseased. Switching to a plant-based diet is an action of liberation. We stand up, open our hearts, and proclaim to the world that we love and that we are willing to act on that love. Our physical and psychological health immediately improve, as does our spiritual health. We begin to create healthier communities wherever we are, and we significantly reduce our ecological footprint on the Earth. We begin to create new economies based on spiritual growth and caring, rather than being slaves to a system of oppression and death. As vegan living continues to grow and percolate through our culture, we will see enormous healing energies released that will counteract the insane inequities that are perpetrated by the transnational financial and corporate powers. It all begins on our plates, and extends outward from there.

J. Wilder:

Some people express a lack of care about cows, chickens, fish, pigs, and other animals, and starving people. Should those who are concerned respond?

Dr. Tuttle:

We have to remember that anger, whether it’s expressed or repressed, tends to be toxic not only to ourselves but to others and to our relationships. Anger causes acidification and contraction, physiologically, and can lead to a variety of physical and psychological complications. It is exclusionary, (though not as exclusionary as indifference) and veganism is the path of expansion and inclusion.

For me, a wonderful way to understand and deal with the anger that tends to arise in these types of situations is to contemplate and remember the Taoist teaching of Chuang-tzu, who offered a metaphorical teaching about a boat. If you’re laying down in a boat on a lake, quietly resting, and suddenly another boat just whams into you without any warning, you’d probably get immediately irritated and angry and leap up, ready to yell at the thoughtless pilot of this other boat. Yet, if upon doing so, you suddenly see that the other boat is actually empty, and it just drifted into your boat, propelled by the winds of karma, you immediately see how foolish it is to be angry in this situation, and all anger dissipates. You even burst out laughing.

This is the same with us. The people we get angry with are empty boats. There is a karmic wind propelling them, and their words and actions, and it is essentially the programming of our culture. Why yell at or be angry with someone who is propelled by the cultural program? Is it wise to yell at and be angry with a program? With the wind? They are asleep – sleep walking and sleep talking. In many ways, it’s pretend sleep walking and sleep talking. We get frustrated and angry because they are causing harm to others and we want them to wake up. Our task is to discover what works best to do this.

Creating communities that encourage awakening is an important part of this – the essential ingredient in cultural and personal transformation is relationship and communication and interaction with others. Building vegan community, both where we are and in cyberspace, is essential to the awakening of our world. Everything we do to channel our energy of caring from anger to constructive community building is a healing gift that blesses us and everyone in our world.

 

Dr. Tuttle, thank you for sharing your insights, and for your tireless advocacy to bring about world peace. For additional information about The World Peace Diet, visit www.worldpeacediet.com.

Wondrous Words of Water

image of Mendenhall Glacier in Alaska

Photo: Mendenhall Glacier by J. Wilder Bill

Water is our salvation. Consider all the times you’ve taken time out from your hectic life with a soothing bath. Inner peace comes easily when you hear or view a body of water. Many of us plan vacations for rejuvenating our minds, bodies and souls with destinations and activities revolving around the wondrous H2O.

“Being out there in the ocean, God’s creation, it’s like a gift He has given us to enjoy,” states professional surfer and author, Bethany Hamilton who survived a life threatening shark attack. Author, Carl Hiaasen, describes his escape for inspiration as “to just get in a boat and disappear on the water.”

Water provides life within us, through what we consume, and by surrounding us in the atmosphere. Civilizations thrive where they show respect with it. We are all impacted by how man relates to it. Scientists advocate our infinite need to protect all resources. “With every drop of water you drink, every breath you take, you’re connected to the sea. No matter where on Earth you live. Most of the oxygen in the atmosphere is generated by the sea,” explains National Geographic’s marine biologist, Sylvia Earle.

As Leonardo Da Vinci provides, “Water is the driving force of all nature.” We are advised to consume as much as eight glasses each day to maintain a healthy body and proper brain functioning, yet with the endless concerns about pollution, overpopulation and lack of drinkable resources, we tend to lapse into anticipating a cataclysmic apocalypse.

Many of us concede man must have clean H2O in order to survive, but the more research is conducted, the more confusing it is to decipher which choices we should make. Instead of fretting over the likelihood plastic bottles can poison us, or the chemical runoff from crops is decreasing our drinkable supply, we can be innovative in creating a solution.

It must be more than a coincidence that several religions view water as a means for cleansing  not just the body but also the soul. Submersion is considered a method for attaining purification. Washing with an intention for attaining a higher consciousness prepares practitioners to receive the teachings of the benevolent Creator. Even a few drops of blessed water have the power to uplift one’s spiritual connection. All faiths include a ritual or prayerful state of mind when utilizing water in a religious ceremony or church service. “If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water,” writes the philosopher, Loren Eiseley.

Water is impressionable. It responds to our thoughts. “All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was,” provides author, Toni Morrison.

Masaru Emoto, author and entrepreneur, devised a method for recording an impression of the memory of water by photographing frozen samples. Emotional images and words introduced to H2O while in its liquid form create patterns in its molecules believed to be a reflection of those moods.

Samples gathered from polluted reservoirs and tap water reveal murky, undefined shapes. Emoto believed human thoughts and images of nature play a role in the quality of water. He arranged several times for groups of five hundred participants to meditate on either an intention to purify the quality, or else on positive chants of love directed at the sources. Photographs of samples taken from the same locations as where the molecules formed murky, undefined shapes were transformed into symmetrical, intricate geometric patterns similar to snow crystals.

It made no difference if the five hundred people prayed, meditated or sang songs, as long as the words and thoughts were positive affirmations. His results were consistent regardless of who provided the loving intentions, who ranged from spiritual practitioners to elementary school children. Also, the distance between the participants and the source of water was irrelevant. Those meditating, chanting and praying were at times thousands of miles away from a body of water they set out to purify. The crystalline formations were equally improved to when the meditations, chants and prayers took place within the same building as the previously contaminated tap water.

Likewise, when the water was exposed to negative words and painful images, the molecules mirrored the chaotic and muddy emotions. In one instance, he recorded seeing microscopic formations from samples removed from a lake that resembled a facial expression depicting horror and pain. After his research concluded, he discovered human tragedies occurred within the body of water.

Emoto concluded that human consciousness and impressions of nature alter the molecular structure of water. He believed, “water could react to positive thoughts and words, and that polluted water could be cleaned through prayer and positive visualization.”

Next time, before taking a sip of a refreshing drink, send a positive affirmation to the item you plan to ingest. Use your consumption as an opportunity to purify what you place in your body. Take a moment to visualize what you would like to improve in your life.

When cleansing and washing any part of your body, put aside your worries and problems to avoid adding a murky element. Focus on intensifying the purifying effects. Practice expressing confidence in your water systems, just as actor and screenwriter, John C. Reilly, found, “There’s something about the water, that solitary kind of peaceful feeling. You’re on Earth but not quite.”

Become consciously aware of the power of your words, both spoken and in thought. Take time to appreciate the wondrous words imprinted in the molecules of water.

Pray for Us

image of Elvis Presley's tombstone of Jesus and angels

Photo: Graceland, Memphis, Tennessee by J. Wilder Bill

Regardless of where you stand on today’s issues, there are times when a political leader gives a statement or supports an order that contradicts your views. The political structure allows opposing parties to create opportunities for themselves by escalating the public’s differing opinions. This gives them leverage to suppress the civilians’ sense of power.

Without belief in our abilities, we become divided. Without unity, a nation lacks strength.

Each of us can make a difference in the government. According to the philosopher and founder of Taoism, Lao Tzu, “A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say, ‘We did it ourselves.’” It is through the people actively participating that leaders are able to serve.

Our duty as civilians is to offer support and prayers for authority figures of every level and position. “Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is,” stated Mahatma Gandhi. Prayer is action.

Within the Holy Bible, 1 Timothy 2:1-3 provides for man to give supplications, which embrace humility on behalf of another. We are to seek intercessions through angels and saints to exalt our pleas for governmental leaders to receive guidance. Saint Thomas More is the patron of lawyers, civil servants, and politicians.

Most importantly, we are to express gratitude for the benefits within our nation. Through prayers and thanks, the entire country acquires peace, goodness and honest dealings within its boundaries as well as with other countries. 1 Timothy clarifies that only God has authority over men, therefore it is proper to pray for political leaders to act with godliness and honesty. Leaders who make choices on behalf of the Divine promote the salvation of all mankind and support all men in their quest for knowledge of the Truth.

Faith grants strength. Trust in a Divine plan for placing those who are in office elevates our spiritual power. Our support influences their actions and grants them insights of Holiness.

Archbishop John Carroll, founder of Georgetown University, suggests first praying for God to have mercy on all nations, regardless of their views or actions, and then for the leaders to gain “heavenly knowledge, sincere zeal, and sanctity of life.” He includes all civil servants who are appointed and elected to have powerful protection in performing their duties “with honesty and ability.”

We pray Thee O God of might, wisdom, and justice! Through whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist with Thy Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude the President of these United States, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to Thy people over whom he presides; by encouraging due respect for virtue and religion; by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy; and by restraining vice and immorality. Let the light of Thy divine wisdom direct the deliberations of Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our rule and government, so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety, and useful knowledge; and may perpetuate to us the blessing of equal liberty.

 Archbishop John Carroll

The English Prayer Book issues thanksgiving and blessings for the leaders of the United Kingdom by humbly acknowledging God’s mighty authority over man, praying for spiritual enlightenment of leaders, and then asking for eternal grace. Blessings are requested in saying, “look favourably on our sovereign lady, Queen Elizabeth. Fill her with your Holy Spirit so that she may love your law and walk in your way. Give her health and strength; and grant that after this life she may enjoy everlasting happiness in your eternal kingdom.”

Rule the heart of your servant Elizabeth, our Queen, so that she, knowing whose minister she is, may above all things seek your honour and glory. And grant that we and all her subjects may faithfully serve, honour and obey her according to your word and ordinance.

Book of Common Prayer

Even a moment of silence dedicated to the President, Congressmen, Senators and Governors having spiritual counsel boosts their capacity for benevolent judgment. As Mahatma Gandhi explained, “It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.”

Prayers and support for government is a longstanding tradition. Unrest within nations tends to arise during periods of social transformation. It is unnecessary to evaluate and determine what decisions our political leaders need to make for us to enjoy safe, prosperous lives. Merely offering your request for them to be surrounded by Holy advisors and to open their hearts to Divine Love creates miracles. “Our prayers should be for blessings in general, for God knows best what is good for us,” stated Socrates.

Love Life

image of polar bear mother with cub in water in San Diego

Photo: San Diego Zoo by J. Wilder Bill

Our planet responds to love. We have the power to improve the circumstances.

With a click of a button, you have the opportunity to witness global acts of uncertainty. Exposure to startling behavior and witnessing deteriorating conditions on Earth tend to produce waves of confusion. Images and news adverse with instilling a sense of safety ripples across the globe in a continuous chain, convincing many to accept the concept of a bleak future as being fact.

Any time my siblings and I disagreed with each other, my father would give the same lecture, his finger pointing, and his tone stern, repeating his notorious one sentence until enough hours passed for us to be too tired to argue with each other.

“Two wrongs do not make a right.” It was that simple for my father.

An intensified version of my father’s philosophy of life applies to global disharmony. As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stated, “In spite of temporary victories, violence never brings permanent peace.”

It seems world-wide violence is increasing, however, many of the same issues existing today began long ago, before mass media. On an optimistic note, humankind has survived terrorists, pollution, and riots for many generations.

A cure for global hostilities exists: Love.

Yes, by itself the word sounds ineffective. Certainly, anyone who is concerned about the seemingly wave of violent behavior is a person who cares but the same person might act adversely toward another out of love for family or his home.

By realizing the aggressions on the planet cannot destroy our inner peace, we can overpower the aggressions. With each moment we are given an opportunity to respond to violence with compassion for the other’s point of view, we create a chain of events that spreads more rapidly than the media can broadcast their versions of the events.

The effects of your act of love with one encounter will inspire the recipient to commit an act of kindness in a situation where he might typically have responded unpleasantly. Doing for others involves intellectual reasoning and a willingness to release your ego. Depending on the level of aggression, you are also placed in a position to exchange habitual fear for trust in the strength of love.

As the numbers of people reacting with love increases, hostilities are deluded. The aggressors lose power. Kindness multiples tenfold and eventually spreads so wide, it circles back to those who generated the loving energy. This isn’t sidewalk preaching. It’s been proven by political scientists, James Fowler of the University of California, San Diego, and Nicholas Christakis of Harvard University that in a situation where acting out of love required a sacrifice by those who gave, their kindness “tripled over the course of the experiment by other subjects who [were] directly or indirectly influenced to contribute more.”

As Desmond Tutu explained, “Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”

In the greatest turmoil, acts of kindness create the highest ripple. You have the power to change the conditions of the planet. Now is a time for love.