Ramkumar Perumal

“This little book could not have come at a better time. At the beginning of 2017 when so many people have been disturbed and agitated by, and apprehensive of, recent and ongoing political changes in various countries, amidst news and dire warnings on the climate change front and about the ongoing ecological destruction, we need a serious reminder about where the real solution lies. The solution lies in our consciousness because that is also where these problems originate.

There are also hopeful signs, for sure, in that more and more people are waking up and calling for an end to divisions, extreme inequalities, intolerance, and prejudices. More and more people are waking up to the horrors and cruelty inflicted on our fellow animals when there is so much scientific information that clearly points to the fact that it is completely unnecessary to eat animal flesh or consume animal products such as cow’s milk and eggs.

But still, I have felt that there has not been adequate attention paid to raising our level of consciousness. There is peer pressure that makes it difficult to talk about things like ‘love’ and ‘compassion’ if we want to be taken seriously in our social circles. Even vegans have to be very circumspect and cautious in talking about their choice in real life (although they may be more vocal and more forthright in online social media).

In the introduction, the author, Michael Lanfield, says, “This book is not about health, nutrition or new age spirituality, but rather words of wisdom that will reawaken love into our lives and view the world in a whole new perspective.” I would also add that this book is also not merely about veganism, although the importance of veganism is stressed from time to time. ‘The Lost Love’ is about the “missing piece” as the author calls it, one that “can bring about significant changes that raise the collective consciousness on our planet.”

As a vegan, I did not expect much new information about veganism as I do not need any convincing about the need to stop killing and enslaving our fellow animals. I gave up eating all meat, including fish 32 years ago. I have been dabbling in the spiritual path for almost just as long. But still, I am glad I listened to this audiobook read by the author, with relaxing, unobtrusive and well-chosen background music, because I feel I needed to hear the author’s insights and ideas as reminders. Most of all, I am so glad to find that there are people who would dare to dream about a beautiful future where all can live in peace, happiness and dignity, without being tied down by the need to be “practical.” Our journey from here to there may necessarily involve many practical steps, but if all our thinking is going to be limited by what seems practical today, we would be doing a great disservice to ourselves and to future generations for not daring to dream.

When we dream or envision a future world, I feel it is extremely important to do so from a place that is largely free of our little egos. Our egos include our biases, addictions, and fears. Yes, we need to confront the reality around us, but any real, lasting solution towards the world where all can live in peace and dignity will have to come from a spiritual POV. “Spirituality” here merely refers to an understanding of the basic connected nature of us all. It is our ego that creates the illusion of separateness, and that is at the root of all our problems.

Integrating spirituality with our rational mind is urgently required in my view, and I feel that the author Michael Lanfield does a great job at reminding us in his own way. Our ideas have a much greater chance of converging in the same overall direction when we are not driven by selfishness, greed and fear. Veganism is merely one small step in this direction, but an essential step.

I was also convinced to some extent by the author about the need to try fruitarianism. Yes, there are some practical difficulties due to geographical constraints. The author mentions moving to tropical regions. I feel this may happen in the future. Right now, I would prefer that the people in tropical regions are first left to live their own lives free of interference and control by more powerful countries, mostly in temperate and colder climates, with their military and manipulative economic and “trade” arrangements and with a greedy, violent past. But this is my “practical” mind talking, viewing today’s reality. It is okay to dream, though. A massive worldwide switch to veganism would go a long way in reducing such unwholesome, unethical behavior by powerful countries.

Once again the solution, I am convinced, lies in urgently elevating our level of consciousness. We should not be afraid to talk about love. Talking about the need for love and compassion should not make us look “irrational” or “New Agey” and daring to dream about an immensely better future world should not be dismissed as “woo.” The more people who would dare to dream the faster we can get to a truly better, peaceful, and compassionate world. This is especially true for those who are already vegans. We should not approach the question of ethics from a purely intellectual POV. That would mean we are still driven by our ego, even though we have taken the first step towards a more compassionate and peaceful world. If we want to accelerate this transition worldwide, I am convinced that we have to become mindful of the way our ego works and try to be free of our ego by understanding and realizing the spiritual ‘Oneness’ of all. And to that extent, this book contains many insights, ideas, and reminders. I look forward to reading Michael Lanfield’s future works as he grows deeper in his wisdom.”
Ramkumar Perumal

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