Note: the paradoxes of being vegan that I discuss in this and subsequent posts are my own personal observations, and not necessarily universally applicable to all vegans
And if you haven't read paradoxes 1 or 2 yet (or have forgotten already because I wrote them so long ago), I'll link to them below.
- Being vegan has changed me completely
- Being vegan hasn't changed me at all
When I say that being vegan has changed me completely I don't just mean what I eat, wear, enjoy for entertainment and consume in other ways (although it includes all of that), but more that it has changed my mindset, my worldview, and my values. It has opened my heart (significant for someone who prefers logic and thinking) in a way that nothing else has, and it's increased my ability to feel compassion and empathy. And in an odd way, caring more about all living animals has allowed me to care more about human animals too. I'm a better person for being vegan and I'm thankful that I took the leap.
At the same time though, being vegan hasn't changed me one iota. In fact, it's probably just reinforced who I really am. Being vegan hasn't made me more patient, hasn't eradicated my quick temper, hasn't made me less reactive, and hasn't smoothed out the rough edges. I'm still quick to judge, am prone to snarkiness, love to come up with new ideas but am not great on follow-up (case in point being all the post topics I have thought up and promised but have yet to deliver, e.g., paradoxes 3, 4, and 5 were conceptualized eons ago), and I still feel like smacking people in the face for being such jackasses half the time even though I usually endorse a gentler approach.
What I think veganism does is magnify who you really are. It brings out your best and worst traits, illuminates whatever charming or not so charming personality quirks you possess, and brings to the fore your true values. In a sense, being vegan is a litmus test. Or maybe I'm just full of it? At any rate, being vegan gives you the wonderful opportunity to use your skills, interests and the unique qualities that make you YOU for the betterment of all, and that my friend, is quite cool.
Need to catch up with the other paradoxes? Here you go:
Paradox #2: as a vegan I've never been more at peace/more pissed off
Paradox #1: being vegan is easy/being vegan is hard