Animal Justice and Moral Mendacity
- 303 Downloads
I wish to take up some of the sentiments we have towards animals and put them to test in respect of the claims to moral high grounds in Indian thought-traditions vis-à-vis Abrahamic theologies. And I do this by turning the focus in this instance—on a par with issues of caste, gender, minority status, albeit still within the human community ambience—to the question of animals. Which leads me to ask how sophisticated and in-depth is the appreciation of the issues and questions that are currently being debated in contemporary circles? What degree of awareness could we say has been present in the traditions—not just in some perfunctory, platitudinal, belief-based descriptions or prescriptions, but in actual explanatory and morally sensitized senses?
KeywordsAnimal moralism India Judaism Gandhi Singer Justice Moral high ground Sentience Paśupati Purāṇas Dharmaśāstra PETA Indian ethics Utilitarianism Deontic animal ethics
An earlier version of this essay appeared in Berkeley Journal of Theology and Religion, Journal of Graduate Theological Union. Vol I , issue 1 (inaugural). 2015: 56-79. The author wishes to express thanks to two anonymous reviewers solicited by Sophia for their helpful comments
- Bailey, G., & Rukmani, T. S. (2000). Literary foundations for an ecological aesthetic: Dharma, Āyurveda, the arts, and Abhijñānaśākuntalam. In C. K. Chapple & M. E. Tucker (Eds.), Hinduism and ecology. The intersection of earth, sky, and water (pp. 101–126). Cambridge: Harvard University Press with the Center for the Study of Religions.Google Scholar
- Bilimoria, P. (2007). Dismantling normativity in Indian ethics—From Vedic altarity to the Gītā’s alterity. In Y. Wang (Ed.), The Ethical Dimension and Deconstruction Normative Ethics in Asian Traditions, NY (pp. 33–74). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Bilimoria, P., & Hutchings, P. (1988). On disregards for fruits: Kant and the Gītā’. In P. Bilimoria & P. Fenner (Eds.), Religions and Comparative Thought (pp. 353–367). Delhi: Sri Satguru Publications.Google Scholar
- Bilimoria, P., & Sridhar, M. (2017). Ecology and Animal Ethics in Ancient and Classical India. In P. Bilimoria, J. Prabhu, & R. Sharma (Eds.), Indian Ethics, Classical Traditions and Contemporary Challenges (Vol. 1, pp. 297–328). London: Routledge Paperback.Google Scholar
- Bilimoria, P., Prabhu, J., & Sharma, R. (Eds.). (2017). Indian ethics, classical traditions and contemporary challenges (Vol. 1). Routledge Paperback: London and New York.Google Scholar
- Bleich, J. D. (1986). Judaism and animal experimentation. In T. Regan (Ed.), Animal sacrifices: Religious perspectives on the use of animals in science (pp. 61–114). Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
- Chapple, C., & Tucker, M. E. (Eds.). (2000). Hinduism and ecology. Cambridge: Center for the Study of World Religions, Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Crawford, J. (2005). The attentive heart. Aldershot: Ashgate, Publishing.Google Scholar
- Epstein, R. ‘Religious Thoughts about Animals’ (compilation). http://userwww.sfsu.edu/~rone/Religion/religionanimals.html; accessed 6/15/2017.
- Exodus. (1989). The JPS Torah commentary: Leviticus translated by Nahum M. Sarna. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society.Google Scholar
- Finsen, L., & Finsen, S. (1994). The animal rights movement in America: From compassion to respect. New York: Twayne Publishers.Google Scholar
- Gandhi, M. K. (1931). ‘The Moral Basis of Vegetarianism’. Speech delivered to the London Vegetarian Society on 20 November 1931. http://www.sophia-project.org/uploads/1/3/9/5/13955288/gandhi_vegetarianism.pdf; accessed Ides of March 2018. Published by Navajivan Press, Ahmedabad, 1959; cited by Tom Regan (1975).
- Gandhi, M. K. (1959). My Socialism. Ahmedabad: Navajivan.Google Scholar
- Gandhi, M. K. (1962). In A. Hingorani (Ed.), The Teaching of the Gita. Bombay: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan.Google Scholar
- Genesis:http://www.chabad.org/library/bible_cdo/aid/8165/jewish/Chapter-1.htm (accessed 6/16/2017).
- Gilmore, Sophia (2015) Judaism vs Hinduism (Food). https://prezi.com/nov0vcoftelj/judaism-vs-hinduism-food/?webgl=0. accessed 15 March 2016.
- Gompertz, L. (1824). Moral Inquiries on the Situation of Man and of Brutes. London: Westley and Parrish; 1992, 2 nd Ed, kingship library, (ed.) Peter Singer (London: Open gate press) (p. 1997). Lewiston: Edwin Mellen Press.Google Scholar
- Gompertz, L. (1852). Fragments in Defence of animals. London: W. Horsell.Google Scholar
- Grandin, T. (1990). Humanitarian Aspects of Shechitah in the United States. In R. Kalechofsky (Ed.), Judaism & Animal Rights: Classical & Contemporary Responses (pp. 81–99). Marblehead: Micah Publications, INC.Google Scholar
- Griffins, D. R. (2001). Animal minds: Beyond cognition to consciousness. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Jacobsen, Knut A. 1996. ‘Bhagavadgītā, Ecosophy T, and deep ecology’. Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 39 (2):219–238.Google Scholar
- Jeremiah. (2016). The holy bible, English standard version. Wheaton: Crossway.Google Scholar
- Jha, D. N. (2001). The myth of the holy cow. New Delhi: Matrix Books.Google Scholar
- Kalechofsky, R. (1992). Preface. In R. Kalechofsky (Ed.), Judaism and animal rights: Classical and contemporary responses (pp. 59–70). Marblehead: Micah Publications.Google Scholar
- Kremmer, L. (2012). Lisa Kemmerer, Animals and World Religions. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Larson, G. J. (1989). Conceptual resources in South Asia for ‘environmental ethics. In J. Baird Callicott & R. T. Ames (Eds.), Nature in Asian traditions of thought: Essays in environmental philosophy (pp. 267–277). Albany: State University of New York Press.Google Scholar
- Leviticus. (1989). The JPS Torah commentary: Leviticus translated by Nahum M. Sarna. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society.Google Scholar
- Linzey, A. (1995). Animal theology. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.Google Scholar
- Mason, J., & Singer, P. (1990). Animal Factories. New York: Harmony Books.Google Scholar
- Midgley, M. (1998). Animals and Why They Matter. Rpt. Atlanta: University of Georgia Press.Google Scholar
- Modern Farmer. (2013). http://modernfarmer.com/2013/10/meet-modern-farmers-spring-2013/ (accessed 6/15/2017).
- Moore, S. (Ed.). (2014). Divinanimality: Animal theory, creaturely theology. New York: Fordham University Press.Google Scholar
- Naess, Arne. 1989. Ecology, Community and Lifestyle: Outline of an Ecosophy, trans. and rev. David Rothenberg, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Patton, L. (2000). Nature romanticism and sacrifice in Ṛgvedic interpretations, in Hinduism and ecology edited by Chris Chapple and Mary Evelyn Tucker. Cambridge: Harvard, CSWR.Google Scholar
- PETA Animal Rights: https://www.peta.org/features/agriprocessors/; https://www.peta.org/features/kosher-vegetarian/ (accessed 6/15/2017). ‘The Problem with Kashrut Certification in the Orthodox Union’ http://www.israel613.com/books/OU-E.pdf (accessed 6/15/2017). https://www.peta.org/about-peta/milestones/2003 (accessed 6/17/2017).
- Pollan, M. (2006). The Omnivore’s dilemma: A natural history of four meals. New York: Penguin Group.Google Scholar
- Regan, T. (1987). The struggle for animal rights. Clarks Summit: International Society for Animal Rights, Inc..Google Scholar
- Śaṅkara (1976). Introduction to his commentary on chapter VI. In Shankarāchya’s Commentary on the Bhagavadgītā. Madras: Samaata Books. p. 181.Google Scholar
- Schwartz, R. H. (1998). Judaism and Vegetarianism. Marblehead: Micah Publications.Google Scholar
- Shimoni, G. What are Jewish Dietary Laws? About.com Guide. http://kosherfood.about.com/od/kosherbasics/f/jewishdietlaws.htm (accessed 6/13/2017).
- Singer, P. (1992). In L. Gompertz (Ed.), Moral Inquiries on the Situation of Man and of Brutes (2nd ed.). London: Westley and Parrish Kingship Library.Google Scholar
- Singer, P. (1993). Animals and the Value of Life. In T. Regan (Ed.), Matters of Life and Death (pp. 287–292). New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc..Google Scholar
- Singer, P. (1990, 2009). Animal Liberation. New York: Avon Books.Google Scholar
- Sorabji, R. (1993). Animal minds and human morals: The origins of the western debate. Ithaca: Cornell UP.Google Scholar
- Spivak, G. C. (1999). A critique of postcolonial reason, a history of the vanishing present. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Taylor, P. (1986). Respect for nature, a theory of environmental ethics. New Jersey: University of Princeton Press.Google Scholar
- USDA Statistics. “Annual report” in “reports & downloads,” Ministry of Food Processing Industries, government of India, accessed July 2, 2015, http://www.mofpi.nic.in/; Livestock and poultry: World markets and trade, United States Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agricultural Service, last modified April 2015, accessed July 2, 2015, http://apps.fas.usda.gov/psdonline/circulars/livestock_poultry.PDF
- Wansbrough, H. (Ed.). (1985). The new Jerusalem bible. New York: Doubleday.Google Scholar
- Weisberger, A. (2003). Animal rights within Judaism: The nature of the relationship between religion and ethics. Sophia, 42(1), 77–84.Google Scholar