Thursday, January 19, 2006

An Islamic Argument in favor of Vegetarianism

In doing my research for this piece, I couldn't find any information about livestock-rearing practices in the Middle East. The one page I was referred to had been blocked. Hmmm.

Dervish and I have been avoiding following what our brains know about this subject for a long time (our stomaches keep getting the best of us).

Now it seems our hearts are speaking. My six-year-old son has been commenting a lot lately about how we can't kill anything and eat it anymore. He has had 2 beloved pets (our beloved cats, Azrak, then Ringtail) tragically killed in the last three months, and I think it registers to him that death is permanent and once someone or something is dead, we can't bring them back.

I am unsure about the global situation, but in the United States, livestock-rearing practices are purely evil. I am going to prove my argument that it makes absolutely no difference if the animal was killed in the halaal (Islamically-mandated/literally, "permissable") way. Even if the animals are slaughtered according to Islamic law, the meat is still unsafe.

We need to pay attention. Things like BSE/Mad Cow disease, along with God-only –knows what else, are very real threats. We must ensure that not only is our meat slaughtered in a halaal manner, but that the way the animal was fed and raised was permissable.

Is the animal “tayyib?” Is this animal that God created as a grass-eating ruminant, being fed what God created it to be eating? Human beings are messing with the food chain in bizarre and terrifying ways. Grass-eaters have become cannibalistic carnivores.

To begin, livestock is routinely fed “protein supplements,” with the idea that this will fatten them up faster before being butchered and then eaten by humans. However, these protein supplements have evil, forbidden ingredients. Euthanized pets (complete with their insecticide-laden flea collars mind you, and their bodies are full of the poison phenyl-barbitol which doesn’t change its chemical composition after being rendered into the protein supplements!), roadkill, and body parts of cows, sheep, and chickens (cannibalism) are what make up this “protein” supplement!

Animals that are supposed to be eating grass are now eating meat. Cows, chickens, sheep etc. are now carnivores, and not only carnivores but also cannibals! Baby cows are also separated early from their mothers (they aren’t finished suckling yet) and need to be bottle-fed by the farmer. The formula they are given is composed of dried cow’s blood! Cannibalism!

The Quran directly forbids us from eating the meat of carnivores, and the meat of carrion.

Carrion, blood, swine, meat in the name of anything other than God are all forbidden except out of necessity/ignorance.




madcapmum said...

Arggh! I'm not ready to give up beef, but I'm certainly looking for places to get it that haven't involved feedlots. Lots to think about here.

UmmLayla said...

I know what you are saying... And I was a vegetarian for many years due to what I knew about the treatment of feedlot animals. DH has the whole you MUST have meat to be healthy thing going, so I know he would not be for keeping meat out of our diet entirely. The good thing is that here in Wyoming (where there are more cows than people) you can find farmers with small herds doing the right things with their animals. This year we got some lamb from a man who really raises his stock carefully, and he would say that it is just logic that leads him to do so... The only problem we have is that even these guys are stuck with the government's standards for vaccinations and stuff. But, alhamdulilah, we can at least find animals that weren't being fed other animals... Gross.

I guess the real leap for me would actually be acting on my understanding and totally eliminating such meat from our diets... And we are getting there, alhamdulilah. The only real pain in the rear is that when we get meat that way we have to cut it ourselves... Can you imagine loading a cow onto the kitchen table to start slicing it up?LOL Yeah, we stick with sheep;)

Rockin' Hejabi said...

Good for you all!

Yes, I am the daughter of a feedlot farmer (also a neo-con/republicrat/Bush-lovin' ________-hatin' etc. and so-forth!)...I grew up eating tons of beef. It was what was for dinner, darnit! Now, I've or am making a 180, in almost everything in my life.
It is so difficult, and here in the Middle east, there is no regulation, no uniformity, and even worse, no platform for open discussion. You can't expose anything for fear of deportation.
So, we have to assume the worst. Saudi has duped the West in everything else about it's industries; why not in the way it raises livestock?
It's unclear, and until it is I have to take the most cautious stand.

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themoonsplit said...

Salams, I just might go vegen.

Lady from Mississippi

hydroman said...


You mentioned in your article that it is clearly mentioned in the Qur'an that eating carnivors is haram.

Excuse my ignorance in the matter, but I've never seen this verse. I also checked all the verses posted except for this one: 6.1450. I'm guessing it's a typo.

i don't mean to be disrespectful but you got my curiosity goin..

kheir, pls do reply if you can.

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Rockin' Hejabi said...

YUSUFALI: Say: "I find not in the message received by me by inspiration any (meat) forbidden to be eaten by one who wishes to eat it, unless it be dead meat, or blood poured forth, or the flesh of swine,- for it is an abomination - or, what is impious, (meat) on which a name has been invoked, other than Allah's". But (even so), if a person is forced by necessity, without wilful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits,- thy Lord is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.

Rockin' Hejabi said...

6:146 "And to those who were Jews We made unlawful every animal having claws,"...animals w/claws are almost always carniverous...

Aoife said...

Asalaamu alaykum,

You are not the first person to have said this. Where are the halal butchers getting their meat from. In technical fiqhlike terms, for an animal to become halal after not eating halal only takes a couple of months of eating halal and halal treatment (also read as kindness)... We are getting crap meat at many of zabiha butchers. Health wise, you are doing much better to go organic with your meat, knowing they are not eating other meats and saying bismillah over it than buying a cow/sheep/goat, whatever from the guy who has a farm and will let you slaughter zabiha, feedhouse unseen.

Supposedly, one of our butchers here in Indy gets chicken from a chemical free farm outside chicago... they aren't free range (who can really afford that?) but they don't eat other animals.

Leila M. said...

I know a lot of Vegitarian Muslims. Can you get to the Islamic Concern website or is it blocked? Email me girl (also to tell me what to do with your site, too! shheshh!)



hydroman said...

"[Yusufali 6:146] For those who followed the Jewish Law, We forbade every (animal) with undivided hoof, and We forbade them that fat of the ox and the sheep, except what adheres to their backs or their entrails, or is mixed up with a bone: this in recompense for their wilful disobedience: for We are true (in Our ordinances)."

It just struck me as odd that you said the Qur'an 'directly' forbids eating carniverous animals. I too have read from the jurists that it is forbidden. I'm sure they have a reason why. I've also heard that's why fishes with scales are forbidden.


Rockin' Hejabi said...

My translation says "with claws" not with "undivided hoof"...what animals with claws are not carniverous?

Apparently Dervish says he saw it in the Quran that carnivores cannot be eaten/are haram. I'll prod him on that one and get back with you, inshallah.

Thanks for the challenge.


Angie said...