VegWeek Pledge!

This is from the Compassion Over Killing (COK) website. Check it out and make the pledge to put the animals, your health, and the environment first next week! It’s a great way to challenge what you thought you knew about food. And if you have any questions about what in the world you eat if you don’t eat meat, just post a question and we’ll answer it!

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Welcome to VegWeek 2012: Take the 7-Day Veg Pledge!

April 23-29, 2012: There are 52 weeks in a year, so why not make at least one of them meat-free? VegWeek is seven-day celebration highlighting the many benefits of choosing vegetarian foods—for our health, the planet, and animals—and thousands of people nationwide are taking the 7-Day Veg Pledge as a fun way to discover new and delicious meat-free meals! Sign up today–and we’ll even send you a Starter Pack loaded with recipes and product coupons.

You’ll be in good company! Several elected representatives, including Md. Senator Jamie Raskin and Md. Delegate Tom Hucker, along with community leaders and media personalities, such as Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten, are also pledging to go veg–in addition to thousands of others nationwide.

Be sure to check out the dozens of restaurants offering VegWeek specials as well as VegWeek events taking place across the country.

Join in on the fun: Sign up for the 7-Day Veg Pledge now!

What Is VegWeek?

Compassion Over Killing launched the first-ever VegWeek in 2009 in Takoma Park, Maryland (our hometown) thanks to the inspiration of MD Senator Jamie Raskin. Sen. Raskin eagerly signed up as the first person to take our 7-day Veg Pledge—a pledge he’s kept to this day—and VegWeek was officially recognized by our city through a Mayoral Proclamation.

Energized by his new vegetarian diet, which he refers to as “aligning my morals with my menu,” Sen. Raskin has since helped COK expand our VegWeek campaign, first to entire state of Maryland in 2010 then to Virginia, DC, and California in 2011—and now nationwide!

Want to volunteer for VegWeek or host an event in your town? Contact us today!

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Afoot and Lighthearted

We have found ourselves gathering photos of our feet. It wasn’t our plan, but a welcome wonder since it now leads us toward memories of places we have visited and the people (or empty spaces) that surrounded us. Looking back, we were able to find other similar photos and we share them all with you here.

Our feet ground us to a time and place, our footsteps mark the wanderings on.

Christmastime, 2012

Christmastime, 2012

Connected By Breath

~~~A Wave~~~ is a special contributor to this blog. Follow his Category, “A Wave: Connected,”  to follow his thoughts and discoveries of our connection to each other, to the world around us, and to the mysteries beyond. …

“Breath is the bridge that connects life to consciousness, which unites our body to our thoughts” — — Thich Nhat Hanh

The breath, taken from our planet’s atmosphere, is free for all of creation. No being can hoard air and try to get more than their share and neither can we buy, sell or trade the breath. If I hold my breath because I want to “own” the air.., I will die, but if I let this breath go…, it comes back to me in abundance without any conditions.

This fluid motion of breathing, however voluntary or involuntary on our part, allows precious oxygen to travel thru the trachea into the bronchi, which connect to the lungs. The lungs then divide into even smaller bronchi, called bronchioles. These bronchioles branch off into even smaller passageways called alveoli and each lung houses between 300-400 million alveoli. This vital, life giving oxygen, finally immerses itself into our blood stream through the tiniest blood vessels known as capillaries. The journey of the breath completes its purpose, allowing our one of our body’s most essential process to occur and breathing is the root process that all of the other essential processes of the body depend on.

This complicated process happens every second, of everyday, for every living thing on this planet. Breath is a symbiotic interconnection that we all share in every moment with our planet. It is so seamless and essential but yet, it is something that goes by overlooked and unnoticed each day. The relationship between all living things and our atmosphere/planet has been a central factor in the evolution of our physical, mental, and spiritual awareness. This exchange between plant and animal has occurred in every moment of everyday for hundreds of thousands of years before we ever came to exist. Its almost as if “we” are but just one singular expression of this unseen force, without which we would not exist.

My point is to emphasize that this life is a process of seamless, symbiotic interconnections, which humans take for granted each day. This breath travels to our very core each moment and yet we aren’t held accountable for ignoring it, or even polluting it. This interconnection has sustained our ancestors just as it sustains us, and all who will come after us.

The negligence and ignorance of the human being is a direct cause of the degradation of our health, which has been happening incrementally yet persistently. The byproducts of our accelerating industry, technological advancements, and modern conveniences are slowly destroying the very force that has given us life for millennia.., the air that we breathe, in every moment. All systems are affected by our inconsiderate ways, including our water supply, our farmlands and the protective biosphere that protects us from the sun.

I firmly believe that we as humans are capable of restoring balance to this system of interconnectedness that we are all tied to so deeply and we all must come to this realization, if we are to preserve life on this planet. The damage must be reversed in order to keep all systems and life in harmony, and the protection of our air, water, earth, atmosphere and organic way of life is vital, not just to us but to every living thing that exists now, and all that will exist after us.

“When we tug at a single thing in nature, we find it attached to the rest of the world” — — John Muir