Animal Writes
13 May 2001 Issue
"Judaism & Vegetarianism" Book Challenges Jew's Diets

from the IVU ONLINE NEWS - Number 29 - April 2001 

An updated and thoroughly revised edition of "Judaism and Vegetarianism" by Professor Richard H, Schwartz [IVU Supporter] has just been published by Lantern Books [ also an IVU Supporter - ]. Previous editions of this book have been called a "classic" and the "Bible of the Jewish vegetarian movement," since it is the most comprehensive coverage of the topic in print.

Written from a very positive Jewish perspective, Dr. Schwartz's book challenges Jews (and others who take religious teachings seriously) to live up to the highest values and mandates of their religion by shifting toward a vegetarian diet. Using an abundance of recent statistics, he argues that such a shift is a societal imperative because the production and consumption of animal products contributes significantly to global climate change; many environmental threats, including the destruction of tropical rainforests; scarcities of water, energy, and other resources; widespread hunger; and the very cruel treatment and slaughter of almost ten billion animals annually in the U.S. alone. Paul Peabody asserted in Fellowship magazine that "it would be hard for anyone ethically sensitive - Jew or non-Jew - to read
this book and not take up the vegetarian cause."

To make Judaism and Vegetarianism as useful as possible, it also contains biographies of famous Jewish vegetarians, discussions of Jewish vegetarian groups and their activities in the U.S., Israel, and England, over 60 questions and answers, an annotated bibliography, nutritional suggestions, action ideas for promoting vegetarianism, and a detailed index.

The book is endorsed by Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen, Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi of Haifa, Rabbi David Rosen, former Chief Rabbi of Ireland, and other prominent Jews and non-Jews, including John Robbins and Howard Lyman.

Richard Schwartz has been researching the topic of vegetarianism from a Jewish perspective, and writing and speaking about his findings, for over 20 years. He is an acknowledged expert in this field and in 1988 he was chosen as the "Jewish Vegetarian of the Year" by the Jewish Vegetarians of North America. He has over 100 articles on connections between Judaism and vegetarianism on the Internet at Among these are articles connecting vegetarianism to each of the Jewish festivals, questions and answers on all aspects of the topic, and challenging articles, such as "What Diet Does God Prefer for People?"

For further information about the book and/or the campaign being built around it to get vegetarianism onto the Jewish and other agendas, contact Professor Schwartz at [email protected] 

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