Who Was Pythagoras?

pythagoras1

Disclaimer: My only goal with this list is to produce as comprehensive a resource for Vegan information as possible. I am 100% Abolitionist Vegan and 100% against exploitation of nonhuman and human animals, any type of violence against human or nonhuman persons or property, welfare regulation, any form of speciesism, ethnic bigotry, genderism, ableism, heterosexism, etc., any of the large governmental or non-governmental nonhuman animal organizations, “happy meat,” vegetarianism, veg*nism, Meat-Out Mondays, or other forms of reductionism and anything else that makes it seem like any form of violence or exploitation of animals is ok. If any of those positions are endorsed on any site in this list, or any language is used to imply that, it’s not that I included that link because I agree, but simply because I don’t control every bit of information on all of these sites.

Pythagoras was one of the most important inspirations for Vegans today. Here’s a short explanation of why:

“The first philosopher in the West to create a lasting vegetarian legacy was the Greek teacher Pythagoras. He was born on the island of Samos in 580 BCE and studied in what are now the countries of Greece, Egypt, and Iraq before establishing his school in southern Italy at the city of Croton. While Pythagoras is famous for his contributions to math, music, science, and philosophy, it is his philosophy that is of particular interest. He taught that all animals, not just humans, had souls, which were immortal and reincarnated after death. Since a human might become an animal at death, and an animal might become a human, Pythagoras believed that killing and eating non-human animals sullied the soul and prevented union with a higher form of reality. Additionally, he felt that eating meat was unhealthy and made humans wage war against one another. For these reasons, he abstained from meat and encouraged others to do likewise, perhaps making him one of the earliest campaigners for ethical vegetarianism.”

Source: http://advocacy.britannica.com/blog/advocacy/2010/08/the-hidden-history-of-greco-roman-vegetarianism

Why did I choose Pythagoras as an inspiration?

Although Pythagoras’ principles of non-harm originated in something a bit more spiritual or religious, and my ideas about non-harm originate purely in rationality and empathy, he’s still the first known “Western World” advocate for ethical vegetarianism (which at that time was analogous to what we consider Veganism today). Unlike some other brilliant philosophical geniuses from history (I’m looking at you, Buddha) Pythagoras gets less credit for his philosophical stance on non-harm than for his mathematical theories, at least among the general public, which is a shame… plus he’s got one kickass name. It sounds like a giant snake combined with a gorilla!

Quote from Pythagoras:
“If men with fleshly mortals must be fed,
And chew with bleading teeth the breathing bread;
What else is this but to devour our guests,
And barbarously renew Cyclopean feasts?
While Earth not only can your needs supply,
But lavish of her store, provides for luxury;
A guiltless feast administers with ease,
And without blood is progidal to please.
~ attributed by Ovid

More reading on prominent figures in the history of Animal Rights:

http://www.animalrightshistory.org

“World History Of Vegetarianism”:
https://www.vegsoc.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=830#

Percy Bysshe Shelley:
http://www.animal-rights-library.com/texts-c/shelley01.htm

Al-Ma’arri on Wiki:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Ma%CA%BFarri

“On Veganism From a Medieval Arab Poet”:
http://www.abolitionistapproach.com/on-veganism-from-a-medieval-arab-poet

“Ancient Vegans: Porphyry”:
http://www.towardsfreedom.com/297.html

“A Vegan Booklet of 1655 – ……don’t think about ‘almost five o’clock’!”:
http://www.happycow.net/blog/a-vegan-booklet-of-1655-dont-think-about-almost-five-oclock

Prototype Vegans:
http://www.vegansociety.com/feature-articles/prototype%20vegans.pdf

If you’re not already Vegan, and you think animals matter morally, then please go Vegan. It’s easy and great for you, incredible for the animals, and wonderful for the planet. If you’re already Vegan, please educate non-Vegans about why they should go Vegan. Please rescue, volunteer, adopt, foster, spay, and neuter the nonhuman refugees of domestication whenever you can. Please feed your nonhuman family Vegan where you can. These things are the most important, morally responsible things to do and are desperately needed by everyone.

To learn more about Abolitionist Veganism and the issues I’ve outlined in this post, check out The Master List Of Vegan Info:
https://legacyofpythagoras.wordpress.com/2014/04/10/master-list-of-vegan-info

Disclaimer: My only goal with this list is to produce as comprehensive a resource for Vegan information as possible. I am 100% Abolitionist Vegan and 100% against exploitation of nonhuman or human animals, any type of violence against human or nonhuman persons or property, welfare regulation, any form of speciesism, ethnic bigotry, genderism, ableism, heterosexism, etc., any of the large governmental or non-governmental nonhuman animal organizations, “happy meat,” vegetarianism, veg*nism, Meat-Free Mondays, or other forms of reductionism and anything else that makes it seem like any form of violence or exploitation of animals is ok. If any of those positions are endorsed on any site in this list, or any language is used to imply that, it’s not that I included that link because I agree, but simply because I don’t control every bit of information on all of these sites.

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6 thoughts on “Who Was Pythagoras?

  1. This was an excellent read. Thank you for sharing it along with us! Nowadays the net is full of poor content there is however no doubt which you spent enough time by editing this content. Again, thanks for your time as well as your efforts!

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