Veganism at
The Parliament of
World Religions

The Interfaith Vegan Coalition calls on the Parliament of World Religions to consider compassion for all life that suffers.

Video

Watch this 6 minute video; Higher Love

First Vegan Banquet in over 125 years !

Serving God Not Animals

  

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Writer Frank Lane – Frank@UnitedVegan.org – 714-675-0110


First Vegan Banquet after 125 years at the Parliament of World Religions!


This historical vegan banquet was a turning point for all that suffer.  Hosted by the Charter for Compassion and facilitated by the Interfaith Vegan Coalition as part of the weeklong Parliament of World Religions in Toronto, Canada.   

 

Eight thousand devoted to peace gathered from around the world to hear and explore 300 religious leaders’ interactions with the Parliament’s theme “The Promise of Inclusion and the Power of Love.”  


When Frank Lane and the Interfaith Vegan Coalition read the theme for the banquet they spring into action to organize a memorable knock your taste buds-off plant-based event to demonstrate compassion.  Their mission was clear and vital for bringing respected for all life including animals by serving a delicious vegan meal.  


“Our relationship to food is only second to our relationship with God” states Frank Lane a 31 year vegan and Ahimsa advocate. In alignment with the core values of Compassion, Karen Armstrong, the Keynote Speaker and the founder of the Charter for Compassion articulated leadership for the Compassion Movement to major religious leaders. 


The Interfaith Vegan Coalition thought it would be nonsense to serve enslaved animals and participate in the animal holocaust of abject torture and suffering, when there is no human need for any animal products.  Especially since former Catholic nun Karen Armstrong is now a world leader of interfaith compassion. The banquet represented a significant contribution to the theme of compassion for all sentient beings, expanding the promise of inclusion and love to embrace all animals and helping to question the prevailing narrative of exclusion and exploitation of animals, stated Frank Lane.  


Marilyn Turkovich, Executive Director of Charter for Compassion exclaimed about the tasty and delicious plant-based foods served in recognition of compassion.  These 300 religious leaders made the connection between their faith and animal suffering with each bite without flesh or blood.  


Peace begins at the end of our fork says Lisa Levinson, M.A. and Judy Carman, M.A. the co-directors of the Interfaith Vegan Coalition’s (IVC).  They were taken by the diversity of participants from every corner of the world and the appreciation of a meal without animal torture.  Click to watch the Higher Love video.


 Vegan Chef Sandra Sellani created plant-based foods that delighted even the hardcore carnivores. She is the author of The 40 Year Old Vegan, and succeeded at the formidable task of satisfying the international palettes of the Parliament’s attendees.


Chef Sellani used Good Dot Vegetarian Meat, a wonderful plant-based meat alternative. This vegan meat had an amazing taste, texture and plenty of protein.  Abishek Sinha, CEO and Co-Founder of Good Dot travelled from India to bring his wonderful Good Dot plant-based meats to the banquet.  


Menu:

Rustic breads with vegan spread

Chopped fennel salad with tart cherry vinaigrette

Cookstown greens, roasted grapes, shaved heirloom beets, and Minus 8 vinaigrette

Featuring Good Dot Vegan Meats:

Good Dot Savory puff pie 

Good Dot Veg Meat & Proteiz stir fry 

Good Dot Veg Meat Red Thai curry

Good Dot Veg Meat Masamman curry

Bitter greens with orzo 

Seasonal market vegetables and steamed rice

Blackberry bread pudding with maple cream 

Pumpkin pie Freshly brewed Lavazza regular decaffeinated coffee specialty teas. 


Plant-Based Meat Dishes   

Chef Sellani’s culinary art, of turning the Earth’s bounty into revitalizing and salubrious entrées, seems capable of helping to inspire many caring people to transition to a more vegan way of living. Besides being delicious, the plant-based menu demonstrates and honors Karen Armstrong’s work of spreading compassion not just to other humans, but to all living beings.  


For vegans, there is no ethical difference between animals such as dogs and cows, and so they strive to minimize abuse to all animals, refraining from all flesh, dairy, and eggs. Veganism is one of the fastest growing social movements in the world for several fundamental reasons.


"Dr. Sailesh Rao states urgently that our current rate of killing wild animals will result in Year ZERO: 2026, the year by which virtually 100% of wild animals will become extinct.  Throwing the balance of life into this cataclysmic event called “Prevent Year ZERO” by eating plant-based for a truly compassionate Vegan World."


 “Our relationship with food is a spiritual communion with God." says Frank Lane, a vegan activist author, who thought it hypocritical to serve tortured animals while honoring compassion!  Lane wrote and directed Higher Love, a PSA advocating veganism as a spiritual path: See https://youtu.be/vc_5ceAh7fU or UnitedVegan.org


According to Buddhist teacher Alan Dale, “Compassion is the ultimate spiritual path to our higher self or God. The vegan choice is a choice for compassion with a reverence for all sentient beings. It is a communion that can transform us and make for a better world.”


“There is no way to overstate the magnitude of the collective spiritual transformation that will occur when we shift from food of violent oppression to food of gentleness and compassion,” writes Dr. Will Tuttle, a 38-year vegan, best-selling author, and former Zen Buddhist monk.


The Interfaith Vegan Coalition is committed to engaging religious leaders to consider the effect of food choices on humanity’s health and behavior, on our fellow earthlings, on the environment, and on the world’s hungry. 


With faith in the good hearts of all attendees, the Charter for Compassion Banquet shined a light on the war being waged against animals, and the urgent need for all religions to take a stand to bring peace to human and all beings.  


 “When the power of love and nonviolence is extended to all sentient beings by the religious leaders of the world, then we will have a real chance to end violence, war, poverty, many diseases, and environmental destruction,” writes vegan author Judy Carman.  


The World Peace Diet - by Dr. Will Tuttle suggests how eating for Spiritual Health and Social Harmony how we as a species might move our consciousness forward to be more free, more intelligent, more loving, and happier in the choices we make. 


Interview with animal activist Charlotte Cressey and Neal Barnard, M.D. of Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine who speaks about his concept of #vegan "Universal Meals" with religious leaders at the Parliament of World Religions in Toronto. Lisa Levinson reports for #JaneUnchained.

https://www.facebook.com/JaneVelezMitchell/videos/266149290913010/


According to Frank Lane, “There is a higher love we can all enjoy by making our body a holy temple.  It is our mission to have these 300 religious leaders extend their religious passion for the health of their congregations to include the well-being of animals and the planet.”


Learn more about the Interfaith Vegan Coalition at www.interfaithvegancoalition.org, a project of international nonprofit animal protection organization, In Defense of Animals, www.idausa.org. 


By Frank Lane – Writer, Author of United Vegan; a path to EnlightenmentFrank@UnitedVegan.org  714-675-0110 – See https://youtu.be/vc_5ceAh7fU

 

This Press Release was edited by Judy Carman, author of Peace to All Beings and Dr. Will Tuttle, Author of the World Peace Diet and Public Relations Connector Expert, Susan Leonard at susan@curematch.com


For Interviews of exemplary vegans please contact:

 Frank Lane – 714-675-0110 – Frank@UnitedVegan.orgwww.UnitedVegan.com 

30 year vegan – author of www.BeInHeavenNow.com and the www.TheGreatCompassionMarch.org - Click to watch Higher Love video.

Vegan Community Potlucks

To find a Vegan Potlucks near you, Go to www.VeganSpirituality.org and add your contact information for announcements.

REPORTS ON THE VEGAN BANQUET & PARLIAMENT OF WORLD RELIGIONS

Additional Information

INTERFAITH VEGAN COALITION IN ACTION AT THE PARLIAMENT 

    
 THE INTERFAITH VEGAN COALITION
 SHINES A LIGHT ON AHIMSA AND VEGANISM
 AT THE PARLIAMENT OF WORLD RELIGIONS 


 Thanks to the hard work and donations of many people, In Defense of Animals’ Interfaith Vegan Coalition, co-founded by Lisa Levinson and Judy Carman, had a well-received presence at the 2018 Parliament of World Religions. The theme of the Parliament was “The power of love and the promise of inclusion.” Eight thousand people from around the world attended this historic event. Plenaries, talks, and panels went on all day and into the evenings from November 1 to the 7th in Toronto, Canada. We felt it was essential for the animals and the vegan message to be represented there and to reach as many people as we could.

  
 We reached out and spoke out for a Vegan World in six ways: The Interfaith Vegan Coalition (IVC), Good Dot, and Vegan World 2026 booth; networking with attendees; a vegan banquet for the Charter for Compassion; several vegan talks and panels; two showings of the Thomas Jackson’s new film, “A Prayer for Compassion; and a traveling art exhibit entitled “Animals and World Religions,” curated by Dr. Lisa Kemmerer.   


  The Booth: IVC shared a 20 x 20 foot booth with Abhishek Sinha and Deepak Parihar, co-founders of Good Dot (www.GoodDot.in); with Dr. Sailesh Rao’s Climate Healers’ Vegan World 2026; and with Dr. Lisa Kemmerer’s brand new traveling museum exhibit, “Animals and World Religions.” Good Dot offered samples of their plant-based meats to their visitors on one side of the booth. Good Dot’s mission is “to bring high quality, affordable plant-based meat substitutes all over the world. We want to save lives, both human and animal, by providing tasty, healthy and environment friendly alternatives to meat.”  


  On the other side of the booth, IVC displayed our Vegan Advocacy Kits for various religions (accessible online at www.interfaithvegancoalition.org) and shared handouts from coalition members such as Vegan Spirituality, Circle of Compassion, Vegetarian Friends, and Christian Vegetarian Association. We also had recipes from Madeleine Tuttle and others, several books and prayer flags to sell, invitations to the film screenings of “A Prayer for Compassion,” etc. Along each side of the booth, Lisa Kemmerer’s “Animals and World Religions” panels were displayed. Sailesh Rao’s Climate Healers’ Vegan World 2026 banner and science-based poster brought attention to the urgency we are facing. By the year 2026, if we do nothing to change the current trajectory of extinction, all wild vertebrates will become extinct. We must create a vegan world soon in order to eliminate animal agriculture, the leading cause of extinction and so many other world crises.  The dialogues with visitors to the booth went on steadily throughout each day. We were so encouraged by the many vegans who visited as well as those who were not vegan, but who were very open and interested in the spiritual, environmental, health, and animal connections.   The Interfaith Vegan Coalition side of the booth.  The panels on the sides  are the Animals and World Religions traveling art exhibit.  The Good Dot display on the other side of the booth.  Delicious samples were offered to booth visitors.  People loved them all.     Lots of interest, many great discussions, new hope for the animals.
 

 Networking: Some of the religions represented at the Parliament indicated a definite leaning toward veganism as part of their spiritual work. Among them were the Tzu Chi Buddhists (www.tzuchi.us), Aumism (www.aumisme.org); and Caodaism (PortlandCaodaiTemple@yahoo.com). Zoroastrians are asked to be vegetarian one month out of each year; The Sufi Bawa Muhaiyaddeen Fellowship recommends vegetarianism. The Urantia Foundation members are approximately half vegetarian or vegan. Many in the Share International group (www.share-international.us) are veg, and they serve vegetarian food at events. The founder of World Clergy (www.worldclergy.org) is vegan. We met several animal ministers. Of course, many of the Jains, Hindus, and Sikhs were veg or vegan. At the Hindu American Foundation (www.HAFsite.org) one third of the meals served are vegan. The Brahma Kumaris group includes a growing minority of vegans. The Ontario Sikhs and the Sikh Gurdwara Council served a free vegan lunch (although the desserts were not vegan) to thousands of people every day. The people in the world who have aligned veganism with their spiritual values is increasing exponentially. It was very encouraging.    The loving, generous Sikhs serving thousands of people vegan lunches every day.
 

The Charter for Compassion Vegan Banquet: The organizers of this banquet for 300 people were very open to IVC’s suggestion to make the banquet vegan. Good Dot provided much of the food, and Chef Sandra Sellani, The 40 Year Old Vegan cookbook author, supplied the recipes and helped the chefs with preparation. The end result was truly delicious. The Banquet took place on November 2 and featured awards, speakers, and music. Although we were not able to offer a meal blessing orally, we were given permission to write a vegan meal blessing. This was printed on beautiful cards and placed at each attendee’s place setting. Abhishek was also given the opportunity to speak about the Good Dot food and why the vegan meal was in perfect alignment with the high aspirations of compassion.  IVC plans to follow up with the Charter, as well as its partner, the Golden Rule Project, to create more vegan meals at their future events.  
 

This is the Vegan Meal Blessing that was placed at each person's place setting at the Charter for Compassion Banquet.  Many seeds of lovingkindness for animals were planted at the Banquet and all through the week.  May they bear beautiful fruit and bring a final end to the killing, domination, ownership, and exploitation of our animal cousins.   


  Vegan Talks and Panels: Dr. Lisa Kemmerer, author of Animals and World Religions, gave a talk on “Integrated Justice,” showing how nonviolence to animals is critical to justice for all. She also was on the ”Justice for Just Us?” panel, along with Candace Laughinghouse, Charlotte Cressey, and Dr. Alka Arora. Rabbi David Rosen also gave a talk on veganism, as did Dr. Neal Barnard of Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine. There may have been more vegan talks of which we were not aware, as there were many hundreds of talks and panels. At the closing plenary, Swami Chidanand Saraswati stated that he believed the next Parliament should be totally vegan.  
 

Two Showings of Thomas Jackson’s new film, “A Prayer for Compassion”: Dr. Sailesh Rao, producer of the film, hosted two showings during the Parliament, bringing more vegan enlightenment to all attendees. Thomas interviewed many spiritual leaders who are vegan to show how veganism is in perfect alignment with one’s highest spiritual ideals. Please go here to see the trailer and share it.     
 
 

The traveling art exhibit entitled “Animals and World Religions,” curated by Dr. Lisa Kemmerer and Carolyn Mullin: Each beautiful panel represented various world religions and included statements made by some of their leaders that align the values of those faiths to veganism. Contact Carolyn Mullin at mullin.c@gmail.com to display this traveling exhibit at your local organization, University, or place of worship. The exhibit will have an online component soon. 

 
 Heartfelt thanks to the many folks who helped make this happen: Abhishek Sinha, Deepak Parihar, Frank Lane, Dr. Sailesh Rao, Carolyn Mullin, Dr. Lisa Kemmerer, Marilyn Turkovich, Sandra Sellani, Thomas Jackson, Ray Kowalchuk, Steve Kaufman, Reverend Carol Saunders, April Willson, Raquel Fronte, Charlotte Cressey, Dr. Alka Arora, Candace Laughinghouse, Dr. Neal Barnard, Rabbi David Rosen, Beth Redwood, In Defense of Animals, and many more.   
 
 

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