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Are Animals Sentient Creatures And What Does It Mean If They Are?

vegan questions Jan 29, 2019

The definition of sentience is 'the ability to perceive or feel things'. Sentient creatures have the ability to receive information from their environment and to feel and react to that information, whether they show fear, happiness or indifference.

Your dog might display his or her sentience when they react to a doorbell ringing by barking. Your dog is noisily trying to alert you to a change in your environment by barking at you. The same creature might react with happiness when you return home from a day at work. Your dog has missed you and is expressing his or her joy at your return.

Your houseplant, on the other hand, is not sentient and will not react to changes in environment in the same way. Plants react to stimuli, but this is not the same as being sentient. To be sentient, a creature must have a central nervous system and the capacity to perceive an environment and think through reactions.

Are animals sentient creatures?

Yes, animals are sentient. Scientists do not dispute...

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What Is Veganism And What Is A Vegan Diet?

vegan questions Jan 29, 2019

People who are vegan avoid eating and exploiting animals in all parts of their lives. This means that they not only avoid eating meat, dairy, honey and eggs, but they do not participate in horse riding or other activities that exploit animals for human gain, even when that gain does not result in the death of an animal.

The Vegan Society defines veganism as:

"A way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose."

That means that vegans avoid wearing wool or leather, eating eggs, consuming milk or meat, eating fish, and using animals and other sentient beings as part for work or entertainment.

What is a vegan diet?

A vegan diet is a diet that excludes all products that involve the killing or exploitation of sentient beings. That means that people who eat a vegan diet only eat foods made by plants. They do not consume meat, dairy products, honey, eggs or fish.


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Water The Right Seeds

If we water the seeds of compassion, justice, and other important values, in others and also in ourselves, we increase the effectiveness of our advocacy and help grow a better world for everyone.

Watch the next video on Effective Advocacy here.

Produced by Beyond Carnism & Vexquisit Studio. Presented by Dr Melanie Joy & Tobias Leenaert.

Please take this short survey about this vegan series

Find out more about Beyond Carnism or CEVA

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Winning Hearts And Minds, Not Arguments And Debates: Part 3

You are going to influence someone today. A conversation you have with someone on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook today will be a deciding factor as to whether or not that person alters their behavior in the coming days, months, or years. Even if the person you’re communicating with doesn't go vegan overnight, you’re getting the ball rolling. You're planting seeds that will eventually sprout into a new compassionate way of living.

Understanding your audience is crucial to finding success in your efforts for the animals. Identify what kind of messaging is going to work with them. If your audience is younger, they're prime for the 'go vegan' ask. If it’s older people who may be more set in their ways, then a gentler ask, like Meatless Mondays, may be more successful.

Don't get caught in the vegan bubble. Social media is wonderful in many ways, but in one particular way it can be quite counterproductive. It puts us into silos and bubbles with others who...

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Putting Food First

Many vegan advocates put morality first. But what if putting food first could be even more effective in helping others become open to learning about veganism? Show – don't tell – them the benefits of a vegan diet vs. eating meat.

Watch the next video in the Effective Advocacy series here.

Produced by Beyond Carnism & Vexquisit Studio. Presented by Dr Melanie Joy & Tobias Leenaert.

Please take this short survey about this vegan series

Find out more about Beyond Carnism or CEVA

Continue Reading...

The Best Vegan Websites And Blogs For Information

vegan questions Jan 10, 2019

There are lot of vegan websites and blogs out there to help you with your transition into veganism, or to offer you advice, support and education.

In this article, we'll show you some of the best websites for vegan readers, including those that can help you with cooking, clothing, education, activism, raising vegan children and transitioning to veganism.

Vegan food websites

Vegans love to eat, so you'll find lots of vegan recipe websites on the internet. As this compassionate lifestyle grows in popularity, so too does the number of website dedicated to incredible vegan food.

There are blogs and websites dedicated to all sorts of vegan eating; those that can help you with proper nutrition and fitness goals, as well as those that will teach you to make the best junk-food you've ever eaten in a compassionate, animal-free fashion.

Here are some of the best ones we've found.

Vegan Richa

On the Vegan Richa website, you'll find all sorts of tasty tips and...

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Winning Hearts And Minds, Not Arguments And Debates: Part 2

When we discuss the realities of factory farming and the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle, the people we need to focus on aren’t those who already think like us. We need to focus on the general public. The 95 percent+ of the population who are eating animals. They're the ones who need to be won over, so we must cater our message to them.

To all those using social media to speak up for animals, think critically about the way you communicate with the outside world. You aren't just exposing people to the cruel realities of factory farming. You're essentially asking them to completely change their lifestyle. A lifestyle that has been reinforced over decades of eating animals, which is 100 percent acceptable according to social norms. We're making a big ask of people to consider this new way of living, so we shouldn’t discount the enormity of that request.

To create positive change, we must meet people where they are, not where we want them to be. It's likely that just a...

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Vegan Clothing In The UK

vegan questions Jan 08, 2019

Vegan clothing is clothing that was produced without using sentient beings as part of the production process, either through the use of their skins, or the use of their bodies as part of the manufacturing process.

You might be surprised to learn that many of the materials used to produce clothes people wear every day are not vegan. Vegans cannot wear or use wool, leather or silk, for example.

There are many online and offline retailers worldwide who stock and sell vegan clothes and accessories.

Vegan clothing in the UK

If you're vegan, you're probably as conscious about the clothing you're buying as you are about the food that you eat. At first, it might feel complicated, but don't worry, there is lots of vegan clothing in the UK. You can find items on the high street, or by buying from specialty vegan clothing retailers. You'll also find shoes, socks, and accessories that are vegan-friendly, too.

What is vegan clothing?

Vegan clothing is clothing that's produced without using...

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Focus More On The “How” Than The “What” Of Communication

When advocating veganism, is your goal to win a debate? If so, then it’s also to make the other person lose. When you focus on the “how” rather than the “what” of your communication, you reduce the risk of creating a win-lose scenario and increase the chances that your message will be heard as you intend it to be.

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Looking For Accidentally Vegan Food? Here's A List

vegan questions Jan 03, 2019

Accidentally vegan food is food that was not produced specifically for the vegan market, but happen to be vegan. It’s vegan because it does not contain any meat, dairy or eggs.

Lots of foods you eat every day are accidentally vegan, including bread, pasta, some sweets, crisps, biscuits and cereals.

There are dozens of accidentally vegan products for sale in the UK and across the world. Once you know what to look for, it’s incredibly easy to spot them.

Please note, for the purposes of this article, we'll be including items that contain palm oil as an ingredient. If you avoid palm oil because you are concerned about the ethics involved in it’s production, you may want to check the ingredients of the items listed here to make sure it is not used.

For more information about palm oil and why some vegans avoid it, you can read our dedicated article.

Accidentally vegan foods

Foods are accidentally vegan when they contain only plant-based ingredients. There...

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