I thought vegans were snobs, even though I’d never met one. I was 18, living in the midwest, where I grew up on meat and potatoes.
I heard about vegetarianism for awhile. I decided to try it just for kicks. Within a week, a piece of meat made it’s way into my mouth. Only this time was different.
At a birthday party we ordered appetizers. I reached automatically for a piece of pork and as soon as I starting chewing, a new awareness washed over me.
I could feel, for the first time, that this “food” was flesh. Pig flesh. And I did NOT want it in my mouth. Ever. Again. I put down the last bite of meat I ever had.
I moved to the west coast and stumbled upon John Robbin’s book Diet for a New America: How Your Food Choices Affect Your Health, Happiness and the Future of Life on Earth. Learning the realities of health, diet, and slaughterhouses unsettled me deeply. I didn’t want to be a part of animal abuse anymore.
I went vegan for one week just to try it. I had more energy and could hike without getting winded. My stuffy nose was clear. I felt lighter in body and spirit. I was doing something revolutionary, yet it was so easy! This was the life choice for me. I never missed any animal product, and I never looked back! That was over twenty years ago.
I worked at a retreat center in the California mountains as head chef. I insisted all meals be vegan. Cooking for groups of spiritual seekers was a beautiful thing for me. I got to feed their souls with fear-free foods while they retreated from harsh realities to look within. I developed my philosophy of mindful cooking during this time.
Nowadays I cook for my husband and myself, friends and family. My meals are loaded with nutrients, textures, and flavors. People delight in the food and a light always goes off in their heads – “hey this tastes great! I could eat like this all the time!”
Recipes for Compassion is my antidote to overcome apathy and intimidation. Veganism is one of the biggest blessings of my life and I want to share it with the world!
Whereever you are in YOUR vegan journey, I’m delighted you found your way here, and I thank you for your compassion. I dream of a vegan world, and every vegan meal is one step closer!
Thank you for reading! ♥ Meghan Oona