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Each month, the Compassion Consortium presents 12 new Reflections, at These consist of quotations from a wide range of people, some recent and some from the past, that offer thoughts and reflections relating to the mission and Tenets of Agreement of the Consortium. Following is an additional Reflection that I would like to share with you:

No man is an island, entire of itself. Every man is a piece of the continent,

a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as any manner of thy friends or of thine own were.

Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.

And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.

Until Victoria enlightened me this week, I thought that the phrase “No man is an island” came from Shakespeare, or maybe the Bible; and “For whom the bell tolls” originated with Hemingway. I had no idea that both of these iconic phrases were expressed in a sermon by John Donne, the Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral in 1642. I feel so stupid.

Anyway, please share any reflections that are special for you, and we can include them in our monthly Reflections section on the Compassion Consortium website.

Lastly, at our April 24 spiritual service, not only will there be an important message from The Mad Vegan Prophet, but there will also be a visit by a Magic Dragon named Puff.

We hope to see you there.

Rev. William

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Just an FYI. There will be an important message from The Mad Vegan Prophet at our April 24 Sunday Spiritual Service.

Rev. William

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A research study by the University of Winchester, UK, of 2,536 dogs over the course of a year revealed that those on a well-balanced plant-based diet exhibited fewer signs of poor health, such as common illnesses or repeated trips to the vet. Almost half of the dogs fed a conventional omnivorous diet — based on meat, grains and some vegetables — required medication considered non-routine, while just a third of vegan dogs needed them. For all the time, money and heartache saved on staving off illness — coupled with dogs reportedly finding vegan food as tasty (according to the research) — the researchers suggest a vegan diet could be a worthwhile switch.

“Our study is by far the largest study published to date,” said lead researcher Andrew Knight, “It revealed that the healthiest and least hazardous dietary choices for dogs are nutritionally sound vegan diets.”

My first skeptical question when I read about a university research study is: what company funded the study? However, Victoria and I did switch our dog Forbes to vegan dog food several years ago, largely based on our own ethics. But if the above study is correct, then there are also major health reasons to do so. We had to go through several different vegan dog food brands, which Forbes quickly rejected, until we found a brand called Bramble, which he seems to enjoy. Bramble was a vegetarian-eating dog in the UK who lived to be over 25 years old, and at the time held the Guiness World Record for being the world's oldest dog.

However, I also admit that Forbes' favorite "treat" is when I share a Beyond Burger patty with him. To him, if it smells like meat and tastes like meat, then it must be meat. So, I suspect that in his heart (and stomach) he still has a preference for meat. And that raises the question of whether we should "impose" a vegan diet on our dogs based on our human ethics. The answer for us was "yes", but it was not an easy process at the time.

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