Do you need to be vegan in this day and age to be a proper Stoic?

That’s a good question I’m not sure I know the answer to.  Factory farms are not exactly the best things we can do to our animals meant for consumption.  Europe has managed to make a lot of laws forbidding mistreatment of animals meant for consumption.  The United States actually doesn’t use laws as much but corporate pressure from places like McDonalds is changing the way we treat animals here in the US.  A lot of corporations that sell meat for consumption in the US are going free range with a lot of their meat so the point of making laws might be moot soon.

Some of the ancient Stoics were vegetarians or dabbled in it.  In the ancient Greco-Roman days meat was considered a luxury item so to live a simple life meant give up meat.  Ancient Stoics weren’t ethical vegans or vegetarians except for the sense that they were trying to live more moderately.  They weren’t concerned with maximizing pleasure or reducing suffering of animals per se.  Of course, ancient Stoics didn’t have factory farms to contend with.  Back then everything was free range.  Well, definitely more free range than now.

So should you, a Stoic, be an ethical vegetarian/vegan these days?  I guess it depends on where you think how far out Hierocles’s Concentric Circles go.  If you think they expand out to only to humanity, then the answer is no, you don’t need to be an ethical vegetarian/vegan.  If you think they do expand out to animals and the environment, then maybe you should be looking to become a vegetarian/vegan.

Personally, I’m just kind of a fence-sitter on the issue who hasn’t really made up his mind.  Maybe it’s why I’m not a Sage.  🙂

agriculture animal animal photography blur
Photo by Matthias Zomer on Pexels.com
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3 thoughts on “Do you need to be vegan in this day and age to be a proper Stoic?

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