Sunday, May 25, 2014

Preachers Need to Wage War on Gluttony

Today is Sunday, preachers are inevitably preaching about one thing or another, usually about unimportant stuff such as the ills of what might be going on in some people's bedrooms, but have you noticed they rarely preach against the sin of gluttony?  They are cowards who do not want to piss off some members of their congregation.

I do not care if I piss people off, I want to save the world; gluttony is a sin against nature.  People who are gluttons are consuming more food than they need, more than their share, and taking from the planet more than they should. 

Gluttony usually refers to the over consumption of food and drink.  It has also been defined as eating delicacies rather than plain and simple foods. Pope Gregory I even said that the addition of sauces or spices to improve the taste of food amounted to gluttony.

Back then I bet nobody thought how far gluttony would go, I bet they had no idea the gluttonous foods we would have to day, nor the idea of an "all you can eat" restaurant where people do literally eat all they can.  I bet nobody imagined a time when we would have food eating contests!

One of the most common forms of gluttony is people eating portion sizes that are larger than their needs.  The appropriate portion size of meat is 4 oz, about the size of a deck of cards, but very few people stick to that. Meat is very bad for the environment for many reasons, one of which is the deforestation that occurs to clear land for cattle and to grow more crops specifically to feed cattle.  The manure waste is also bad for the environment too, as well as the methane released in farts and burps.

Coffee is also consumed in gluttonous amounts, so much so that some people are now addicted to caffeine.  Coffee is bad for the environment for many reasons, mostly the deforestation of the rain forest to grow coffee, but also because of the waste generated by restaurants who serve coffee, particularly take out coffee.

Things such as candy, pop, and potato chips, are non essentials to life, and are often consumed in gluttonous amounts, contributing not only to obesity, but to environmental problems in general, mostly related to the processing of these items and the garbage created.

We are not "overfishing" we are "over eating fish" and we need to stop before we eliminate so many fish that their species cannot recover.

If a waitress in a bar has the right to say to a drunk person "You have had enough" why cant a fast food worker say "Sorry, you do not need the super sized portion" or the restaurant worker say "Nope, you do not need dessert"?

Is the gluttonous person only hurting themselves?  No, their over consumption of food is hurting the planet, it hurts us all.  It hurts the future for our children, and theirs. 

Glutton is a hard sin to overcome, and I wish more preachers had the balls to preach about it and people were more concerned about this and stopped freaking out so much about what others do in the privacy of their bedrooms.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Greed Has No Place in an Overpopulated World

I wrote a post earlier about why some preachers do not preach against greed and wealth even though these things are against most religions.  In this article I am going to explain some of the reasons why greed is bad particularly as the world becomes more and more populated.

I will first note that most people who are greedy never see themselves that way, they say they earned it, or are entitled to it, they never realize the full picture.  They live in big houses, throw lavish parties, and often live a life of excess, simply because they think they have earned it.

In a perfect world everyone would live and be happy with less and by doing so we would preserve our environment and live more sustainable lives.

One of the reasons that greed is so bad is because when people are greedy they consume more resources.  Not all resources are renewable and as they are used up it creates problems for the future.  The earth has a carrying capacity which is based on its resources, currently some people are using far more than there share of resources, while others make do with less.  Those that take more are the ones who are destroying the planet the most.

Greedy people do not only take more resources from the earth but they also keep others in poverty.  One person cannot have more unless others have less.  When one person demands a higher wage they cause a ripple effect, increasing prices or creating hardship for others.  Let us say that person is a CEO of a big company, typically they demand a big wage and one of the ways to make sure they get more money is to pay others less, or to reduce the amount of hours others work, and then to make them work harder. The CEO feels they are more valuable.  Sure you might say "those lower paid workers can always quit" but then somebody else will just be hired in their place.  The whole point being the lower paid workers are the heroes, the greedy higher paid bosses are the greedy villains.

To most these are modest homes, but to some they would look like mansions.
Imagine a pie, if one person takes a big piece, it leaves less for others, and eventually the pie is gone.  Greed is not fair, it is ignorance and selfishness.  People think they are "entitled" to more pie because they earned it, and they qualify themselves by saying "Life is not fair" but really it is them being not fair, and just trying to find excuses for their greed.

So many people will deny that they are greedy, they will live in million dollar homes and insist that they worked hard for their money and as such they are not greedy, but what they will always fail to realize is that they have taken more than there share of the earth's resources.  Greed is not always about money.