Supreme Master Ching Hai on the Environment
First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology - A compilation of Supreme Master Ching Hai's lectures   
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With diverse flora and fauna, magnificent natural landscapes, and an ecological biosphere that supports life, this wondrous planet is our earthly home. From our animal co-inhabitants to the lush rainforests and life-giving soil, we cherish all these as gifts from the Creator. It is a common theme in the world’s major faiths that during our temporary stay here, we should be good stewards of Mother Earth.

Throughout the years, Supreme Master Ching Hai has shared the message of leading a balanced life while following a spiritual path. Not only must we nourish our spirits, but we share the responsibility to care for nature and our fellow beings. In light of recent scientific evidence which pinpoint the raising of livestock as the number one contributor to climate change, Supreme Master Ching Hai affirms the important message she has noted for over the past two decades:

we must be vegan and practice sustainable living. We invite you to listen to a compilation of excerpts entitled “First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology” in which Supreme Master Ching Hai discussed the importance of the plant-based diet in relation to the development of new technology to address climate change.

It’s a pleasure to have your eco-conscious presence for today’s episode of Between Master and Disciples. Part 2 of “First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology” will continue next Friday. Up next is Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants right after Noteworthy News here on Supreme Master Television. Please stay tuned. May your days be filled with brilliant Lights and the Music of Heaven.

We appreciate your happy company for today’s episode of Between Master and Disciples. Join us again tomorrow for part 3 of “First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology.” Up next is Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants right after Noteworthy News here on Supreme Master Television. Please stay tuned. May you be guided by wisdom and kindness in your everyday life.

Thank you, valiant viewers, for your company for today’s episode of Between Master and Disciples. Join us again next Friday for part 4 of “First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology.” Up next is Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants right after Noteworthy News here on Supreme Master Television. Wishing you many happy moments every day.

Gracious viewers, thank you for your heartfelt presence for today’s episode of Between Master and Disciples. Join us again tomorrow for part 5 of “First Be Veg, Then We Can Develop Sustainable Technology.” Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants is coming up next, right after Noteworthy News. Please stay tuned to Supreme Master Television. May we open our hearts to God’s infinite blessings.

Thank you, Earth-loving viewers, for your company for today’s episode of Between Master and Disciples. And now, Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants is coming up next, right after Noteworthy News. Please stay tuned. We wish you a peaceful and blessed weekend.
Master, as a result of many subsidizing programs supporting the environment and the ecology, Germany is one of the leading countries in using sustainable energy. So in 2007, sustainable energy made up 14.2% of the gross national power consumption. Wonderful. (Yes.)

I just would like to know if this development has something to do with an evolved state of consciousness or just the greed of financial gain from these programs. You are terribly critical, my God. They should do it, of course, even if they are greedy. It’s good to have sustainable energy. Goodness.

If they don’t do it, you would be lamenting that they don’t do it and they are harming the planet; if they do it, you worry they are greedy. No, I think it’s good, very good. It’s good that you ask. It has something to do with evolved consciousness, that people understand the urgency of our planetary problem right now. So, people are trying their best to develop, to invent new technology, to bring greater comfort and sustainability to the planet, which is very good. Even if it’s greed, only God can judge it. As long as it’s good for the planet, bravo them! Don’t worry about greed. They must earn some money anyway, and they will earn a lot if they are doing this, because right now it is in. It is a true necessity and it is a blessing to do such a noble endeavor. So if they earn a lot, I congratulate them, greed or not.

If they earn some more money, they will develop more. That’s all right. Material gain is not a sin. If you were born and raised in violence and street gangs, then you’d continue like that; but maybe one day you’ll wake up. But at first, it’s difficult, you see? Then you decide to wake up and get out of it, then you do it. Same with our planet right now... we still have a little chance to do it. So, if everybody changes – no more killing animals, no more raising animals, just leave them as they are right now…

Because even physically speaking, they use up a lot of water, not to talk about the gas or pollution; they use up a lot more than humans use. Clean water, beautiful meadow… because when we raise cattle, 50 years later we cannot even cultivate that land because it has been so hard and pressured and barren. Fifty years after raising cattle on one piece of land, that’s useless, the land is still useless. Fifty years after that. That’s a lot. That’s our lifetime, Madam. You see, you have to wait 50 years after in order to cultivate that land. So, a little bit more awareness, right? Yes, awareness. We just decide to be good. That’s it. You have to be noble to be good.

When we think about how the animals suffer in such a situation, cramped factory, get kicked about, and electric prodded so that they stand up again so that they can be qualified for slaughter. And some veal just stand, weak, deprived of light and everything just so that their meat is tender and white - all their life like that - and they get slaughtered all the time. How do we have the heart to continue to support this kind of cruelty? Everything is a vibration, as you said at the beginning, it’s just a vibration that we are also feeling a way that we are not aware of - I mean, this vibration of these suffering animals. Yes. So we just have to change; just new habit, that’s it.

Maybe you don’t like orange juice, then just drink apple juice. Just change. Just like some people change: they don’t smoke, they adopt a different habit. So we change, we have a meatless diet. So simple. Just change habit. People think they cannot do it – they can! They’re so strong. It’s all habit only. It’s all habit. We just change the habit. And everything’s changing anyway. And everything will change, yes; and if you don’t change, the planet will change and we all go anyway. So no need to be picky about meat or not meat, we all go. You see what I mean? Compassion, we must have, and just from compassion alone we should stop eating meat because it causes untold suffering to the helpless, innocent animals. They do us no harm! They do us no harm. And we’re not starving without them. We have all kinds of food to eat.

Millions of people around the planet are vegetarian, and they’re happy and they’re okay. So just change the habit; that’s all there is. Change the habit into vegetarian, change the habit to using sustainable energy. I’d like to ask you something about your activities on this environmental problem. In which direction the solution lies about this environmental problem, that we are becoming more and more aware and people getting more and more nervous about this?

Well, there’s not much for me really to say anymore, your question answered it, most of it, already - as you are well aware of it. Because I think many people already know from the United Nations report, from weather report, from scientist’s report that our planet is really in peril, and also the solution lies in our hands.

Number one, that we, of course, we have to lessen the so-called bad karmic retribution and you know that so well. Karma is the Sanskrit word for, like, “as you sow, so shall you reap” in the Bible. We have to sow some different seeds now in order to reap different fruits. We have to be less invasive to nature. We have to live and let live. So I just propose a very simple solution – like baby steps, I say all the time – like first we just try to refrain from all animal products. I’ll go into more detail later.

Second, we have to produce and use sustainable energy, new energy, like sun energy, sustainable forever. And the third, we have to plant trees. Each of us plants a couple of trees, then we will have billions of trees already. Suppose we should plant… Of course it’s just theoretically speaking, but we should plant where there are no trees, in the desert and things like that. And the fourth, we pray to Heaven’s blessing and grace to save us, to help us, to be able to be strong to do it. Why do you think humankind came to this point of being so destructive to nature?

I’m asking myself this because, how come we didn’t see it earlier? Because there are some nations, aboriginal people in Australia or Native Americans, they knew it all along. Yes. Not a hundred years ago Native American elders said that “If you will go this way, this is going to be the consequence,” and they knew. Why we, why the western civilization, didn’t know these things? Why were we so blind?

You see, because the so-called civilization developed too fast, and they feel superior. They don’t listen to the so-called elders, like what you’ve mentioned. The ones that look very simple, live simple and the so-called civilized, developed people thinking that we’re powerful and the Native elders don’t know anything because they live so simple. We don’t listen. And not only we don’t listen now, we don’t listen to Jesus, Buddha. They always tell us, the whole Bible, everywhere you can find: don’t eat meat, don’t kill animals, don’t destroy nature, respect all creatures of God, because they’re all from God. Same Buddhism, same Christian, same Islam, same Jainism, same Sikhism. All say “protect nature,” protect animals, for example like that. Even if the Native Americans, for example,

if they have to take something from nature, they do appreciate and respect and try to replace it somehow; not completely destroying at mass scale, like mostly what we do right now. How do you see it? Do you think there is still time that people can change?

Yes, yes, we have to change quick. We don’t have time. But I’m just talking to you. I don’t know how about the mass outside and, of course, my people, they have television and we broadcast in the whole world. Whoever wants to listen can listen everywhere, in every corner of the world, because we have satellite and also internet TV.

But that’s all we can do. And we also print leaflets, flyers to tell people that “It’s really happening. Please take care, please do something,” and that’s all in our power that we can do now. You see, it’s up to humans to choose, to decide; and we should decide to live. We should decide that we can do anything at all in our power to preserve our lives on the planet. Because it’s not just one life or two lives, just not my life or your life, it’s the life of the children and the next generation. Just to have this beautiful planet and we destroy it, it is very, very pitiful.

We have to decide a different way, we have to walk a different way, that’s it. We have to decide that, “Okay, we’re going to be courageous. We’ll do whatever it takes.” But it doesn’t take much. just to be vegetarian, Just to plant a couple of trees each person and just to use the sustainable free energy. That’s all there is, three simple steps. Refrain from animals.

Of course, I mean also killing by war, but the number we kill in war is not as many as the mass killing in animal slaughtering. You know that yourself. So it’s only very simple. Refrain from killing each other and animals for any reason – for food, for profit, for gain, for anything at all. Refrain from killing. Produce and use sustainable energy, plant trees. We can have everything, we just do that. Yes. Not like we have to do big deal stuff. No, very simple. The sun is there for us to use forever, the wind is there forever, the waves in the ocean we can use forever. It will never be finished.

Compared to other energy that maybe you’ll have today, you don’t have tomorrow – and maybe you’ll even have to make war to take it. The sun, you don’t have to. Nobody can possess the sun. Nobody can stop you from using it. So, very simple: vegetarian, sustainable energy, plant trees and, of course, we pray so that we’ll be strong and Heaven will help us to choose the right way. That’s all – four solutions. Very easy, everybody can do it, don’t you think? Sure. Yes. Yes.
Master, Sir Paul McCartney, he has a documentary for the Vegetarian Society since 1995 and it’s so complete. It explains absolutely everything about the devastation of the planet. I could see the UK making a lot of changes.

A lot of changes. For example, talking about the plastic bottles, and they showed millions of plastic bottles. Master, it’s millions and millions of plastic bottles and they were talking and they’re going against the construction of another plant for Heathrow; so all the three mayors are going against it. I know. It’s terrible. And they were interviewing people and they were saying, “Why do you use these plastic bottles?” and they said “because it’s convenient.” Yes, yes, I know. But when they show it on the camera, the millions of bottles just frighten me, floating everywhere on the water.

The plastic, as you know, it never disappears from the planet. Yes, I know. But nowadays, they make it degradable, it’s better. (Okay.) If they use that, it’s okay. If not, just use recyclable. At home, we use filter water. We put it in a plastic bottle, the old one that we have used before. Because if you put it outside, it’s not recyclable so I use them, I keep them to put water in, sometimes filter water, sometimes not, to carry around to water the plants or wash the dogs. But they’re not mineral water. When I’m cooking, it’s filter water; it’s in the mineral water bottle but it’s not, because we use those attached to the faucet, the small, about your wrist’s size like this, you attach it to the faucet.

Very easy, you can do it, into the pipe, water pipe, and then the filter water comes out. Also, you can buy those filter bottles with something in them already. You just pour water on it and then water drops down, it’s all clean. No need to buy mineral water actually. My God. Okay, we have to think about it. Suppose, suppose nobody does anything and the planet kaput. What will you do? Any idea?

You’ve seen how many “Time to Act” before? Before don’t have. Now if you look everywhere, they’re doing something for the environment. Yeah, I hope they do it all and quick enough. I hope the government really put their thumb into it. That’s all I hope for, and the media. Every day. And just ban this, ban that, and just no meat anymore and then we’re saved. Truly! Very simple. Just use meatless diet, animal-less diet; sustainable energy, limitless sun or wave power; and plant trees – everybody plant a couple of trees only, not a lot – and the government, instead of put money into war, they just use the money to pay people to plant trees where the desert, where the dry climate, where it’s already damaged to revive the atmosphere.

Very simple. We’d be happy to also go out and plant trees free of charge, and our labor and anytime we can if the government is really behind every part of this program. We will also be happy to go out and cook vegetarian, show everybody. In all of our houses, we invite people come into our house and show them how to cook vegetarian. After a few weeks, they know how. Yeah? Okay? If you can do that first, okay? All right. But what I mean is, if the government is really behind it and the media behind it, they just have to put down that piece of meat even if that is a sacrifice, it’s really worth it. It’s really the most noble thing they could do in their whole life. You know what I mean?

Just put down that piece of meat and replace it with the veggie meat. We have so much food to eat, not that we don’t have choice. Why don’t they just try it? Okay, from now, each of you should be teacher, understand me? Anywhere you go, anybody you meet, you talk about it. You invite them to your house, show them vegetarian cooking. Show it on hand, otherwise if they just see it on TV, it may be different. Use your personal energy, love, to show them. We just spread out, we do what we can. Use your time for saving the planet. Show them how to cook vegetarian food. Understand?

Every house I want to turn into a restaurant; a veggie restaurant; show them what you eat. If they don’t know what vegetarian is, they don’t know how to do it. Truly, they don’t know. Even if some people know how, know that vegetarian is good, they don’t know how. They even ask on the internet: “How did you do it?” You see? Truly some people have never heard of it before. They never think about it. So we do that, all of you in the world, teach them how every day, every time you can. All right? Invite them at random, show them how. Invite them as the guest, unconditional. Show them how.

Anybody who smiles at you, you talk to them and invite them for coffee and then invite them to your home. “I live nearby! I didn’t know such a lovely neighbor existed. Wow, what an honor! Let’s go to my house, have a cup of coffee.” And then from then on... Start it, understand me? I’m not joking.

Do something. Okay? Because you’re out there. I do it on Supreme Master Television and cook for my dogs. I talk to whomever I can also. But I’m also very busy for the planet stuff. Do that, okay? Restaurant owner... restaurateur, restaurateur...

Learn to cook well and learn to show it. With your smile, stone will melt, and with your food, the heart will melt. It won’t lose anything, you know what I mean? Vegetarian is very cheap, you can always afford to invite some, and it’s a good investment. It saves the planet. It’s worth it. You try what you can.

Through Supreme Master Television, through flyers, through books, through internet– influence a lot, a lot. But still, habits die hard. Just tell them “change the habit.” That’s it. Invite whoever you can, show the vegetarian diet, make them feel welcome. It’s like everything else. Put candles and all that. How much does it cost? Not so much. It doesn’t have to be a lot.

Make it festive and welcome and homey. Make the food taste good and then they come back for more and then show them how to. Because truly, they don’t know. I’m telling you the truth. Not many people know how to cook vegetarian. Just to think vegetarian, they think just to eat beans, green beans, the string beans, and then they worry they become like string. Surely many would advise you, “Oh, vegetarian! Can you live on that?”

“Is it nutritious enough that way?” They ask you like that because they don’t know, truly. Because they don’t research into that, they’re not used to it. I hope I live to see the day that the government really ban meat because it’s also poisonous to people. Not to talk about methane gas, you know, or waste gas, or depleting energy or water or medicine, nothing yet. Yeah, it’s poisonous. Meat makes everybody sick. Meat is poisonous, everybody knows that. Leader of the people, supposed to be leader, you have to help to protect people.

Suppose you know something is poisonous to your children, will you deliberately give it to them? To kill them? No! No, right? So now all the evidence points out that meat is also poisonous, alcohol is bad - just ban them outright. There’s no more discussion. Poisonous things, you don’t give it to your people. You don’t allow it to be near your people. And even children have access to alcohol, have access to alcohol, not to talk about meat.

That’s why I said, “Just leave the meat alone and we have everything else.” Even oil is fine. Even oil, if we have it we can use it until we have something better for our planet. But if we stop the animal raising, stop animal products, then we cut a big percentage, 80%, of pollution to our planet, and stop 80% of global warming. So, we can continue to have oil and cars. I know people will be surprised hearing me saying this but, no, it is true like that. Because we have not invented enough instruments for transportation and other uses, so we may continue to use the oil if we have it. Of course, the better if we don’t use, but at the moment we must use it. And if we just leave all the meat, animal production alone, then we can use anything.

So, what I say is: Stop the meat production, which will bring great benefit to the environment of your country. Since Mexico is also involved in the livestock industry there is also sustainable resource development as an alternative to oil as well, if we have it quick enough. You see, your country already has begun this with a large wind energy project near the city of La Ventosa, which I understand means “the windy.” Sustainable energy, in general, is also showing itself to be very profitable and job producing to people. So, there can be both economic and environmental benefit from developing sustainable energy. And the Earth will be protected. But animals industry is the number one enemy of our survival. Dear Master, I’m very glad to be part of the conference. The developing countries’ main source of energy is coal that emits an enormous amount of carbon dioxide. The future tendency is to use more coal. Is there any other way to neutralize global warming? Yes, Professor. In the news recently, there are many developing countries which are making use of green technologies such as solar energy, which is clean and sustainable, and they’re also trying to minimize the use of coal. We know from scientists, great scientists such as Dr. James Hansen of NASA, that much of the carbon dioxide emitted from coal burning stays in the air for more than a thousandyears. So, another harmful element of coal burning is the black carbon, or soot, that contains up to 40 different cancer-causing chemicals that would also cause lung and heart diseases. Also, the byproducts of coal plants are highly toxic and can damage the health of people and animals alike. So, every country should help each other to develop more sustainable energy for our shared planet as well as to protect the health of the people and the animals. We just cannot burn away or use up all our precious natural resources, and in the process harm our environment. We must adopt sustainable, green, frugal lifestyles which will support all life on the planet. Again, since you ask, the first step is to end the killing of animals for food. Even Dr. James Hansen highlighted this fact, as he said that being veg is the most effective means for anyone to save the planet without any ado, without any documents, without any trouble.
So global climate destabilization threatens the very existence and continuation of our civilization, so shouldn’t it occupy 100% of our attention? Doesn’t this issue kind of trump every other issue, and shouldn’t we focus 100% on this question because life on planet Earth depends upon it? Of course, of course. That’s why you guys ask questions about it. So you’re worried. Very worried, yes. Thank you for having this conference so that we can share idea.

That’s why it seems important for me to reach out to other people. I think they’re ready to hear and accept the message that vegetarianism is necessary to save our planet. Yes, and also technical reverse, like wind power, sun power and all that stuff. Yes, absolutely. Sustainable energy.

Well, it also depends on the karmic burden of the world, and we try our best. We will let them know on the TV and also individually, wherever we can. All right? All right? Okay. Thank you. It’s just sometimes I’m just thinking, I don’t know if people even listen. Do you understand?

Yes, I understand, Master. Yes, the other day I went out in a restaurant just to see somebody and then I talked to him about climate change and I just like half jokingly, I said, “Well, we have only four, five years, you know that?” And he said “No, no, no. We have 50 years.” And I said, “…couple of years. Scientists…” “No, we have fifty years.” And even then, 50 years, how long is that?

You see what I mean? But just the way they say 50 years like, no problem, it’s like another five million years, something like that. Fifty years to them is like five million years. Something like it doesn’t concern them right now and they just don’t seem too concerned. And my place, I went to a new place and my place is right near the highway, not too near but because I live on a high mountain and the sound just comes up. Like day and night, thousands of cars passing by.

All this is really telling me something. Understand. But nevertheless, we don’t give up yet, we’re doing things. We’re still airing our TV, and we’re still doing our job. But on the other hand I’m telling you the reality. Do you understand? Yes. Yes, Master. Now, 53% of the Americans say, “Okay, vegetarian is good for the planet and for the individual help.” But I don’t know if 53 percent of them are doing it. Not yet.

But the more the message gets out there, the more people will change their life. We do it, we do it. I was thinking even to advertise the whole NASA message on newspapers and pay for it. Yes, I think that’s great! All the newspapers and on TV, but we will see what we can do.

Given the situation and the time frame, we do what we can. Yes, Master. Don’t forget that it’s not just vegetarianism. They have to reverse the technology and everything else, as well. Yes, of course. Vegetarianism is for the long term benefit, to lessen the bad karma (retribution), to touch the mercy of Heaven. But everybody else has to also contribute, like sustainable energy, etc., etc. It takes the whole planet to do it together.

Good evening. I have just one simple question. Since we are talking about global warming this evening, my question is: If you look at recent years, there have been several natural catastrophes. For example, last week there was a disaster in China, the cyclone in Myanmar and a great heat wave in Spain – a whole lot. My question is, in your personal view, are these all caused by global warming? If so, why are they increasing compared to the past? I’d like to hear your thoughts. Thank you.

Okay, yes, Mr. Kim. According to the UN and scientists’ research and reports, 9 out of 10 disasters are because of global warming. So, of course, you know about this because you are a journalist, but I know you are asking this question for the public’s sake. You see, we have more disasters nowadays, and it saddens my heart very much. I keep trying to tell everyone to minimize it. From an individual standpoint, just stay away from animal products, plant trees, use sustainable energy. It’s only three steps actually. Very baby steps. I hope everyone still listens, and still will do it.

Hallo, Master Ching Hai. Hallo! Hallo! First of all, I would like to say that it’s my honor to have a chance to listen to Master Ching Hai’s words. I think we are at a turning point. We are at a point where we will have to face a dark future unless we change. In order to solve the problem, every sector in our society has been making many efforts. What I want to ask you is about our coping strategy. It seems like civic organizations and academic institutes are leading the initiatives to stop global warming, but it seems like the government is lagging behind.

For example, Seoul National University, which is a national institution, consumes one of the highest amounts of electricity. The energy consumption levels of government institutions are high as well. However, I think lowering our consumption level is not the only solution. I would like to ask your opinion about what the public sector, especially governments, should strive to achieve in terms of policy.

As I have mentioned before, we have to tackle the root of the problem. The root of the problem is the cause of global warming, and that root is our unkindness to our co-inhabitants. Every action provokes a reaction, and this is very scientific. You see, if we sow an apple seed, we will get an apple tree, and from that apple tree, after a while it will bear apple fruits for us. This is a circle of life. If we kill, we cannot expect life from it. Every action bears the same fruits afterwards. It’s not religious speaking, it is scientific.

So, now, the root of our problem is that we have been unkind to our co-inhabitants: the living, feeling, walking, acting, loving beings, like animals, of all size and shapes, and we have also been unkind to our environment. So, we have been massacring our co-inhabitant animals, and we have been destroying our environment, like deforesting and destroying the water and destroying the air. From all this, we cannot expect a better outcome. So, in order to solve the problem that we are facing right now, we have to reverse our actions. We have to be kind to our co-inhabitants. Instead of killing them, massacring them, sacrificing them, we have to take care of them, have to be kind to them, look after them.

And instead of deforestation, we have to plant trees again, take care of whatever environment that we have. And instead of polluting our planet, the air, we have to turn to friendly energy and sustainable energy. Just reverse our actions. I think we have to come together as a people to let the government know what we want. Write to the government, all of you, all of the people. The people have to understand, that the government also have their own problems, yes.

There’s no problem greater than saving our lives and the lives of the next generation. If everyone realized this, then we would drop everything else. Everything that is not useful to us, everything that is not kind and conducive to our living here and our next generation’s life, we have to change, we have to drop it. Drop it like a hot cake, like a hot potato, because it burns you. No matter what everyone else says, no matter how much you lose, you have to drop the hot plate because it hurts you.

Global warming is like a hot plate, iron-hot burning plate. We must take care. If the governments do not take care, the people just take care. Just become vegetarian, refuse all the animal products, then nobody will raise animals anymore, nobody will kill them anymore.

Then we stop the physical harmful effect of animal stock raising, which is the number one cause for our climate change. And that’s the only one that we as individuals can immediately contribute. We can change it. No need to wait for the government. We do it. The people have to take action and then perhaps the government will come along with it. If the government doesn’t lead you, you lead the government. There is no need to sit there blaming each other. But you see, it’s up to everyone to choose what they want.

As I have told many times, God gives us free will. I respect that also, so I can only inform, I can only give my opinion, but the people have to do it. Because the people have God inside them, they have wisdom, they have understanding. It’s just that they have to choose to use it. Now, we have to do more than that, it’s not fast enough right now, it is urgent. You see the killing of animals will be the killing of ourselves and our next generation. That is the fact. Like attracts like. What we sow so shall we reap. There’s no need to even talk about religious scriptures; it’s just a fact like that.

Charcoal is an energy source regularly used in Africa mostly in household activities because it is cheaper, compared to gas. However, its use has caused many parks to be deforested and not reforested, while the burning of charcoal also increases air pollution. Please, Master, could you give us advice about other energy sources that would be affordable and could help us avoid deforestation and air pollution? Hallo.

Yes, I understand, and I am glad people such as yourself are concerned about preserving our forests. We must protect the trees as much as we can. According to the environmental organization Greenpeace, 8% of the Earth's forest-related carbon is stored in the vast rainforests of the Congo River Basin in Central Africa. Scientists predict that continued deforestation of the Congo will release the same amount of CO2 as the United Kingdom emitted over the last 60 years! Imagine that. So, it is important to preserve the forest while we still can because it helps in addressing global warming.

Another alternative that could be used to avoid deforestation is something called green charcoal, or biochar, which has been introduced in Senegal. This is made from agricultural waste products, is affordable and prevents deforestation. It also absorbs CO2 as well, which is why climate scientists support the use of it. It absorbs the CO2 very well. So this is one alternative. And, of course, if possible you can use a sustainable energy alternative such as a solar oven cooker, which is safer and causes no air pollution at all. So, these are just some examples of affordable energy sources we can try and share with one another. I’m sure there are more. You can do some internet research to see any better solution up to date. But the most important and most urgent, once again, is the veg diet. V-E-G diet.

This is the good deed that you can do to help save the planet as a whole, because this will most quickly reduce global warming. And it’s not just that. Truly, being veg is not just about reducing greenhouse gases. It is about stopping the suffering of the animals and their cruel inhuman mistreatment. We have to be a noble species; we have to be noble human beings. This is what it is all about, we have to stop inhumane treatment of animals. And if we, in Africa, join together to be veg, we will be blessed by all the Heavens. Please spread the good solution info.
With the emergence of the Asian economic powers including China and India and their increasing energy demands, what goals would you like to see such nations set in this regard?

I would imagine, of course, a Heaven on Earth. And to achieve this, it would be best for these energy-spending countries to develop in a wise and sustainable way. They all know that already. The question is to put into practice the knowledge that we have already accumulated. They should set goals to use sustainable energy and minimize their greenhouse gas emissions in their industries, because every effort is worth the benefits to their citizens’ health, environment, and even the economy. This is the true meaning of prosperity.

Unfortunately, as countries develop, their demand for meat also increases as they can more easily afford it. However, this is extremely counterproductive because the demand for meat pushes up energy demands enormously, while worsening global warming. Raising animals is responsible for 80% of all greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture sector. Here are three reasons why these developing countries should also set no-meat and instead propagate the vegan lifestyle as their number one goal. First, it’s to save energy for better purposes. Meat production is energy intensive and grossly energy inefficient.

To produce 1 kilogram of beef consumes 169 megajoules of energy, or enough energy to drive an average European car for 250 kilometers! One 6-ounce beef steak costs 16 times – 16 times! – as much fossil fuel energy as one vegan meal containing three kinds of vegetables and rice. The UN IPCC’s chair, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, further points out that meat requires constant refrigerated transportation and storage, the growing and transportation of the animals’ food, a lot of packaging, a lot of cooking at high temperatures for long periods, and a whole lot of animal waste products that also need to be processed and disposed of. Meat production is so costly and inefficient, so unsustainable that it is bad business to produce meat. Second, besides energy, precious land, food and water resources, already scarce in these very countries, are also wasted or degraded to unacceptable degrees.

To produce 1 kilogram of beef requires 7 kilograms of grain for feed instead of direct human consumption, while yielding less than one-third the amount of protein. The poor are bound to suffer from hunger. And, overall, increased meat consumption has always been correlated with jumps in chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, whereas before that, these ills were virtually unknown.

Finally, one reason why developing countries should say no to meat production and consumption is that by turning to the plant-based diet, they will gain invisible benefits as well. In India and China it is already taught in their traditions, in the law of ahimsa – meaning nonviolence – and the law of karma, which says “as you sow, so shall you reap.” Meaning, by turning to the virtuous, compassionate diet of vegan alone, they would generate such a positive, constructive energy. This new loving power could even stop the effects of climate change in their vulnerable lands and open up people’s innovative thought to solve all manner of economical, social, and technological problems, and every country, whether developed or developing, will flourish in ways beyond our imagination. I promise it is true. Hallo.

As a model province of climate change, Jeju Special Self-Governing Province is implementing pioneering policies to cope with climate change. We have made a database of the greenhouse gas emissions of Jeju Province, monitoring changes to the forest, underground water, and the ocean ecosystem. We are expanding new sustainable energy such as wind power, solar energy, and bioenergy, and we are reducing fossil energy, thus enabling a carbon-free island.

Supreme Master Ching Hai, I know you’ve discussed a lot with global climate change experts, politicians, NGOs and are working actively in this area. What do you think about our policies and the direction we are taking in Jeju where the influence of climate change is fast appearing and whose people are very concerned? Could you share with us any supplementary information or ideas that we can refer to? Hallo,

Assembly Member Ms. Oh. How are you? Certainly, I will try to comply with your request. If you allow me, there is something important to consider. First of all, I am glad to hear that Jeju’s government leaders, including yourself, are very, very passionate about halting climate change. The autonomy of the Jeju government and the proactive, pioneering spirit of your people is laudable.

Perhaps it’s because you call yourselves “pristine Jeju province” that you put pride and love in your home’s natural beauty, so you want to preserve and cherish it more. Jeju is blessed with an abundance of sunshine and wind, so I’m glad you have been expanding your sustainable energies, like wind and solar power. This is going in the right direction. Bravo and bravo! And I personally humbly encourage you and your fellow citizens to continue in this way. But, if I may point out, if the goal is to be a truly carbon-free society, we should consider all the major sources of greenhouse gases emissions.

You see, we are emitting greenhouse gases not just through the fumes from factories, houses, and cars, but also through the products that we choose to consume. Besides, CO2 is cancelled out by aerosols, which are released at the same time from burning fossil fuels. So, it means that even though we have CO2, the CO2 also has been cancelled out by the aerosols at the same time. Even though aerosols are very detrimental to our health, they actually have a cooling effect that cancels out the CO2 heat in the atmosphere. So up to now, the climate warming heat is not from CO2 – is not from CO2. The warming climate problem is not from CO2, is not from carbon dioxide.

I repeat, it’s not from carbon dioxide. It is from other sources, mainly methane. As I told our student friend earlier, at least 50% of total greenhouse gas emissions are coming from animal meat and dairy products – and it’s not I who said this; it’s all proven, researched, confirmed and published by the top scientists of the whole world.

If we only focus on the green energies, like solar panels, wind power, etc., it won’t have much of an effect, I’m so sorry to say. I have to tell you the truth because this is also my planet. Your island could be my residence at any time in the future. I might love your island, I might want to go there. So, I want to protect your island, I want to protect my planet, so I have to tell you everything, although I might offend somebody or I might not be very popular for doing this, but I have to tell you the truth because green energy is not an urgent task for us to handle right now. Because green energy only tackles the effect of, maybe aerosol or CO2, which is not the urgent issue of global warming, the producer.

The global warming effect comes from raising livestock, from animals. So if we continue on the green energy, then we don’t have much of an effect to stop global warming, because their effectiveness will be cancelled out by the large amounts of greenhouse gases that we generate by consuming meat, and the meat industry. Besides the livestock methane that is responsible for a portion of 50% of greenhouse gas emissions – but 50% is still a low estimate; I would say 80% – there is also the burning of forests to make pasture land, to grow food for the animals, and making the chemical fertilizer and pollution to grow the feed, the transportation involved, the constant refrigeration involved, etc., etc. And all the medical effects, all the costs of the sickness of the people – billions, trillions of dollars – goes into the treatment of the people for meat-related diseases.

And it’s not always even effective, it doesn’t always even cure people permanently or perfectly, even. Even we spend so much money and people have to go through so much suffering, the diseases are not always completely cured, or in many cases, not at all. So people suffer, people die for nothing also, because of the meat diet. So, to produce the meat for consumption, it costs us too much: it costs sorrow, it costs suffering, it costs trillions of dollars. All these add up to many more times greenhouse gas emissions than all the world’s transportation combined, and apparently, more than all the heavy industries and fossil fuel power stations combined even.
At least 50% of total greenhouse gas emissions are coming from animal meat and dairy products – and it’s not I who said this; it’s all proven, researched, confirmed and published by the top scientists of the whole world.

If we only focus on the green energies, like solar panels, wind power, etc., it won’t have much of an effect, I’m so sorry to say. I have to tell you the truth because this is also my planet. Your island could be my residence at any time in the future. I might love your island, I might want to go there. So, I want to protect your island, I want to protect my planet, so I have to tell you everything, although I might offend somebody or I might not be very popular for doing this, but I have to tell you the truth because green energy is not an urgent task for us to handle right now.

Because green energy only tackles the effect of, maybe aerosol or CO2, which is not the urgent issue of global warming, the producer. The global warming effect comes from raising livestock, from animals. So if we continue on the green energy, then we don’t have much of an effect to stop global warming, because their effectiveness will be cancelled out by the large amounts of greenhouse gases that we generate by consuming meat, and the meat industry. Please refer to for more detailed reports on this and many other concerned matters.

So, in order to call ourselves a low-carbon or carbon-free society, we must eliminate our meat consumption because that is the number one cause – we could say that is the only cause – for our climate change, that is, our meat consumption. This is in line with the recommendation of the world’s leading climate experts, like the Chair of the IPCC, Dr. Pachauri, who is a vegetarian himself for the environment’s sake. In fact, if we focus on shifting people to be vegetarian or vegan, it will save us much more money than green technology, and of course it’s much more effective. And I urge you, the government leaders, because our time is running out. We have to act on this now. Please explain to your co-citizens this important truth and tell them we must work together to become animal-free consumers.

We have a very short time to save our planet. We have a great planet to save. We have a great precious treasure – that is, our children – to save. And besides, the government and the people have nothing to lose by being vegan. For the environment, the absence of livestock will bring about much less pollution and less waste of water and food resources. For the citizens, there are perfectly nutritious, delicious alternatives to animal products nowadays, and, as we heard in the doctors’ lectures, the vegan diet is also the best for our children. It’s a win-win solution as stated by Dr. Pachauri, and necessary to save the planet. Please, please, I ask Jeju, don’t just be a model province, but be a one true, heroic, courageous model for the whole world. We need Jeju’s support.

One of the things that we do as an organization is encourage people to go to green businesses and support the business owners who are doing it right. So, first I’d like to invite you to come to DC and we will go out a nice vegan meal together at one of the restaurants. It’d be my honor, God willing. Thank you. One of the things we really like to do is point out people who are doing it right, people who are succeeding in helping us live a more sustainable way, and thankfully, there are many recent examples of people, communities, coming together to live a more sustainable way.

And for instance, right here in DC, Mrs. Michelle Obama has created an organic community garden, a vegetable garden, (Right!) and school children from nearby schools come by to help maintain that garden. Yes, I’ve heard about that. So, I want to know from you specific examples of things that we can do together as communities to really bring about a sustainable planet. Right. Good question. Good question. Yes, bravo to America’s First Lady Michelle Obama. She is my First Lady! Wonderful. That is a true First Lady. She has taken the lead by example.

In our old system of kings and queens in China and Âu Lạc (Vietnam), we call the queen “Mother of the Nation,” so Mrs. Michelle Obama is worthy to be called that. She has taken the lead by example. She even said that her family feels more energetic and healthier from eating the organic vegetables, local-grown. Imagine if every neighborhood in the United States had an organic veggie garden like that, for sharing fresh, healthy, vegetables with everyone. There are reports about organic vegetable farming that it is quite profitable, and the demand for organic vegan foods now is growing faster and faster around the world. So one thing we can do is to encourage more organic vegan farmers’ markets.

Farmers markets are more and more popular in the United States now because it’s fresh, it’s quality, and it’s local, so there is less transportation pollution. But, interestingly, studies show that eating locally is not as good as eating vegan. For example, scientists at Carnegie Mellon University calculated that a vegan diet reduced over seven times the emissions compared to a 100% local meat diet. So, you see? “Eat vegan” is better than “eat local” even, “loco” meat. In Spanish, “loco” means crazy – we don’t eat “loco” meat.

Now, in another study, Foodwatch in Germany found that switching from a meat diet to an organic meat diet saved only 8% of emissions, but switching to a non-organic vegan diet, even non-organic vegan diet, reduced 86% of emissions. So, we save the planet by being vegan. Even non-organic! So, actually, organic is good, local is wonderful, but the first step is at least being vegan, organic or not. Organic, of course, is the best, because when we plant all the tillable acres on our planet organically, then the CO2, the carbon dioxide, which exists already in our atmosphere will be absorbed 40%.

Then we’re happy. Our planet will definitely survive. Now, the vegan lifestyle is the greenest lifestyle. Right or not? Yes! Thank you. Thank you, good children of God. Because even organic meat is actually not eco-friendly at all; it requires even more land, and more energy than the non-organic meat in meat farming. Can you believe that? So, it doesn't even help to try to raise animals organically. The so-called “sustainable,” “free-range,” organic poultry, for example, needs 20% more energy and has a 20% higher, bigger impact on global warming than non-organic poultry farms. Think about that. So, we’ve been misled all the time. This is a terrible thing about this negative power in this world.

It makes us believe things that are not good for us at all. From now on, we have to try to do research and believe only what’s good for us, and we have to research until we really find that this news, this information, is truly reliable and believable by example, by proof. Otherwise, just don’t listen to anything anybody else says if they don’t prove it. Similarly, organic eggs were found to have a 14% higher carbon footprint than non-organic eggs. So there we are. And even though you don’t use fertilizers, the benefit could be cancelled out because of the increased land use. Therefore, only the vegan lifestyle is truly sustainable.

We have covered moral, ethical, scientific and physical benefits of a vegetarian diet. Not because of only moral or ethical or physical benefit, but because this is the easiest way for every one of us to contribute to save the planet. Before the governments even do anything, before the technical developments being offered, we already stop the global warming if we forsake that piece of meat and replace it with a piece of vegetarian protein, which looks similar, tastes similar and is even better in every way – for our health, for our spirit, for our intelligence and for our next life in Heaven. We will be blessed right now even, not to talk about afterlife.

So, I guess everyone should join in and be vegetarian, that’s all I am saying, because it’s the best and the fastest way to save the planet, the best and the fastest way and everyone can do it. No need even technique, no need even new energy, no need the government yet. We do it, we do our part. That’s why I emphasize the vegetarian diet. And if the government join in and help us to promote more, wow! – thank you so much! If we have developed better technology and produce it fast enough for us to use, thank you ever so much. But vegetarian diet, we must start right now. That’s the best way, the fastest and the safest way for us and for the children, our children. If you love your children, try vegetarian diet.

Related Link
Serve Others with Your Heart - August 27, 2008
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