Debate: Lilananda & Adikarta On Consuming Milk Part 1 of 3

Lilananda’s comment on Sivaram Swami’s video Can Vegans Consume Milk?   (See video links at the end of this page)

September 2, 2017 at 8:01am

The information provided in this video is highly misleading because it does not present the downside of consuming dairy products. There is plenty of scientific information from reputable sources that shows the negative effect of dairy products on human health. There are studies that show its positive impact, however, they are often sponsored by the dairy industry. Here is some information from the book The China Study: “But that’s not all. We found that not all proteins had this effect. What protein consistently and strongly promoted cancer? Casein, which makes up 87% of cow’s milk protein, promoted all stages of the cancer process. What type of protein did not promote cancer, even at high levels of intake? The safe proteins were from plants, including wheat and soy. As this picture came into view, it began to challenge and then to shatter some of my most cherished assumptions.”

The China Study The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-term Health T. Colin Campbell, PhD WITH Thomas M. Campbell II, MD

Additional comment from Lilananda dasa September 4, 2017  at 6:18am

The Apple tree example is logically faulty for the following reason: apple trees do produce baby apple trees. However, unlike calves, baby apple trees do not consume apples and leave extra ones for human beings. I am not 100% convinced calves will not drink all their mother’s milk if allowed. I did manage a dairy farm and we had to separate the calves from their mother, otherwise they would drink all the milk. And I have seen the same happening in the neighbors’ farms.

Comment from AK September 4, 2017 at 8:11pm

Adikarta Das Lilananda prabhu, Hare Krishna. I completely understand why you might choose to be a vegan. However, Vedic culture very strongly advocates the benefits of cows, in many different ways. It’s possible that pasteurized or homogenized milk are questionable for the health, still, raw milk from healthy grass fed cows, is, according to the Vedas, absolutely essential for long term good health. We only believe in Krishna because of the Vedas. Without the Vedas, we are left groping in the dark. Great that you sympathize with the cows, but I hope your health stays good. The British health authorities are very concerned about the rise of Veganism in the UK, {more than US} because they say that in the long term many young Vegans will suffer from the Vegan diet. Yes, Srila Prabhupada may have possibly condoned the Vegan diet, but we can’t say for sure, it means he would have to have contradicted himself quite strongly. Bottom line is that he wanted farms where we could all support protected cows, and get the benefit from the milk products.

Can Vegans Consume Milk Part 1

Can Vegans Consume Milk Part 2

Debate: Lilananda & Adikarta On Consuming Milk Part 2 of 3

First Posting

 

I AM POSTING HERE MY REPLY TO ADIKARTA PRABHU. Adikarta Das
Dear Adikarta Prabhu, thank you for your comment! Prabhupada said that food should be taken according to one’s taste. He also said that health comes first. You wrote: “. It’s possible that pasteurized or homogenized milk are questionable for the health, still, raw milk from healthy grass fed cows, is, according to the Vedas, absolutely essential for long term good health” According to dictionary.com, the word essential means: absolutely necessary; indispensable. Based on the evidence I will show below, I would like you to explain, with scientific evidence and reputable research, how we can reconcile your statement with the overwhelming evidence against milk and in favor of a plant based diet. Here is an example, among many, from The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/89/5/1627S.full showing that vegans can be healthy. Can vegans be unhealthy? Certainly! The same applies to lacto vegetarians and carnivors. As far as grass fed cows, their milk still contains casein, which makes up 87% of cow’s milk protein. You wrote about long-term good health. Here is more information from the book The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss, and Long-Term Health. “But that’s not all. We found that not all proteins had this effect. What protein consistently and strongly promoted cancer? Casein, which makes up 87% of cow’s milk protein, promoted all stages of the cancer process. What type of protein did not promote cancer, even at high levels of intake? The safe proteins were from plants, including wheat and soy. As this picture came into view, it began to challenge and then to shatter some of my most cherished assumptions.” Campbell, T. Colin; Thomas M. Campbell II. The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted And the Startling Implications for Diet, We (p. 6). Perseus Books Group. Kindle Edition.
You wrote: “Yes, Srila Prabhupada may have possibly condoned the Vegan diet, but we can’t say for sure, it means he would have to have contradicted himself quite strongly. Bottom line is that he wanted farms where we could all support protected cows, and get the benefit from the milk products.” Yes, Prabhupada certainly wanted farms and he wanted us to protect the cows, but other than not eating meat, fish, eggs and food containing these ingredients, and offering our food to Krishna, he never imposed any specific diet on us. There is no mention in our initiation vows that we must consume dairy. It is not mandatory to drink milk. Why so much effort to put down vegans and shove dairy down their throats? If you want to develop a farm and protect the cows the way you believe it is right, I have no ambiguity. A vegan person may ask you: “1. Except for bulls assigned for procreation, are the other bulls castrated or somehow or other restricted or are they allowed to freely mix with the cows as it would happen in a natural environment? 2. Are the calves freely mixing with their mothers and drinking as much milk as they want or are they restricted? 3. Are the cows simply eating what they would eat naturally or are they fed special food for higher milk production?” A vegan person may want you to answer these questions. What would your answers be?

Although some vegans see us a hypocrites, we should see them as allies. They are convincing thousands to change to a cruelty free diet and life style. The percentage of Hare Krishnas who consume ahimsa milk is irrelevant compared to the total number of members. The odds of a large percentage of Hare Krishna communities moving in that direction, if statistically accounted for throughout the past five decades, is discouraging and unrealistic. Veganism became a strong global movement that is helping our preaching, of course, assuming we won’t take a radical approach of trying to shove dairy down their throats with unscientific information unsubstantiated by facts. I know temples who are successfully catering to vegans. As pointed out by Bir Krishna Goswami in the series Stop Killing The Devotees, two of his disciples had their feet amputated due to diabetes. The obesity in our movement, which is a pre-condition for diabetes, is a fact that should concern all of us. In the medical paper from the medical journal link above, one fact that identifies vegans is that they are usually thin. Adikarta Prabhu, just look around you and tell me if good health is something Hare Krishnas are known for. I see in your email exactly what Dr. Radharadhya says in his interview with Bir Krishna Goswami: “when dealing with devotees you find so many opinions that usually don’t lead to anything. They are quick fixes that are very one-sided and that is not the way how to stay healthy.” One of his books is based on 1400 case studies and the other on 1000 case studies. The health approach is much more multidimensional and complex than you present. Being a lacto-vegetarian and drinking grass fed cow milk, in themselves alone, are no evidence of being healthy.
You wrote: “The British health authorities are very concerned about the rise of Veganism in the UK, {more than US} because they say that in the long term many young Vegans will suffer from the Vegan diet.” I won’t be able to comment on this unless you provide information on how they reached this conclusion. We know that governments are in bed with the meat industry, which is in bed with the dairy industry, which in bed with the pharmaceutical industry. Just see plenty of evidence below. PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY SELLS 80% OF ALL ANTIBIOTICS MADE IN THE UNITED STATES TO ANIMAL AGRICULTURE (I doubt this is much different in the U.K.)
Loglishi, Ralph F. “Animals Consume Lion’s Share of Antiobiotics”. Food Safety News. Dec. 27, 2010
“2009 Summary Report on Antimicrobials Sold or Distributed for Use in Food-Producing Animals”. FDA: Department of Health & Human Services Sep. 2014
“FSIS National Residue Program for Cattle”. USDA Office of Inspector General. March 2010
Greger, M.D., Michael “Drug Residues in Meat”. NutritionFacts.org video. Volume 4. October 18th, 2010
“Antibiotic Resistance: NARMS- Combatting Antibiotic Resistance with Surveillance”. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
“Putting Meat on the Table: Industrial Farm Animal Production in America”. A Report of the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production.
“Industrial Food Animal Production in America: Examining the Impact of the Pew Commission’s Priority Recommendations”. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Center for a Livable Future. October 2013

And here is additional information about the increased health risks caused by the consumption of dairy products.

DAIRY PRODUCTS INCREASE THE RISK OF CANCERS RELATED TO YOUR HORMONES
Barnard, M.D., Neal D. “Milk Consumption and Prostate Cancer”. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
Chan, June M., et al “Dairy products, calcium and prostate cancer risk in the Physicians’ Health Study”. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Oct. 2001 vol. 74 no. 4 549-554

And here is some more.
THERE IS A STRONG LINK BETWEEN DAIRY FOODS AND AUTOIMMUNE DISEASES
“Q & A: Diet, Arthritis and Autoimmune Diseases”. Michael Klaper, M.D. Nutrition-Based Medicine.
“Foods and Arthritis”. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
Maslova, Ekaterina, et al “Low-fat yoghurt intake in pregnancy associated with increased child asthma and allergic rhinitis risk: a prospective cohort study”. Journal of Nutritional Science. 2012. July 6
Greger, M.D, Michael “Treating Multiple Sclerosis with the Swank MS Diet”. NutritionFacts.org video. Volume 15. September 25th, 2013
Yadav, Vijayshree, et al “Low-fat, plant-based diet in multiple sclerosis: A randomized controlled trial”. Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders 9 (2016) 80-90
“The Multiple Sclerosis and Diet Saga”. McDougall Newsletter.
Villagran-Garcia, Edna F, et al “Introduction of pasteurized/raw cow’s milk during the second semester of life as a risk factor of type 1 diabetes mellitus in school children and adolescents”. Nutricion Hospitalaria. 2015; 32(2): 634-637

And yet more.
MOST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD ARE LACTOSE INTOLERANT
“What is Lactose Intolerance?”. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
“Lactose Intolerance”. Cleveland Clinic
Bloom, Gabrielle, Sherman, Paul W “Dairying barriers affect the distribution of lactose malabsorption”. Evolution and Human Behavior 26 (2005) 301.e1-301.e33
And one more. But I will stop here.
FOR WOMEN WHO HAVE HAD BREAST CANCER, JUST ONE SERVING OF WHOLE DAIRY A DAY CAN INCREASE THEIR CHANCE OF DYING FROM THE DISEASE 49%, AND DYING FROM ANY DISEASE 64%
Kroenke, Candayce H., et al “High-and Low-Fat Dairy Intake, Recurrence, and Mortality After Breast Cancer Diagnosis”. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Volume 105, Issue 9. May 2013

I am looking forward to receiving your reply and would like to continue the conversation. With best wishes, Lilananda dasa

 

Second Posting

 

Dear Adikarta Prabhu,

Below is my reply.

ADIKARTA: Dear Lilananda prabhu, Hare Krishna. Thank you for your very well researched info about this topic. I feel we could spend a long time discussing this. Since I have very little faith in things or opinions that directly contradict Srila Prabhupada’s views which are of course, based on the Vedas, and I really don’t think I will be able to sway your opinion, , I think we should just agree to disagree.

LILANANDA: This is a very quick and simplistic approach to a complex subject. Based on the following statement from Srila Prabhupada’s books, I request you to reconsider, thus allowing us to continue this important discussion.

The Caitanya Caritāmṛta says, “A sincere student should not neglect the discussion of [Kṛṣṇa conscious] conclusions, considering them controversial, for such discussions strengthen the mind. Thus one’s mind becomes attached to Śrī Kṛṣṇa.” [CC Ādi 2.117]

ADIKARTA: There are many, many statements you can easily find on the Vedabase attesting to the benefits of milk. Many talk about the spiritual benefits of milk enhancing the brain, and that milk products can help us live, a long, healthy life. A lot of the arguments you present seem to oppose these ideas. Therefore I cannot agree with you about the value of milk. Since spiritual life is %100 dependent on faith in the guru, I just wonder how I, personally, could, on the one hand accept evidence from people who have no knowledge of the Vedas, or who directly contradict them, and keep my faith in them.

LILANANDA: Long before meeting Prabhupada I learned about milk as a miracle food from my mother. She used to say that milk is good for the brain, builds strong bones, will make me live a long life, and so forth and so on. This knowledge was common across the globe. If you look at milk commercials from the 50s and 60s you will find similar statements. However, there were several occasions on which Srila Prabhupada, when presented convincing arguments, accepted them. I will give you a couple of examples.

Example number one
When Prabhupada sent a letter to all temple presidents ordering them to stop doing book distribution in western clothes, Karandhara, then president of LA, decided not to read the letter to the devotees. Instead, he wrote to Prabhupada giving arguments why devotees should be allowed to do book distribution in western clothes. Prabhupada accepted his arguments and conceded. In one of the Prabhupada memories DVDs, a godbrother states that Prabhupada had high respect for Karandhara and treated him as an equal.

Example number two
In one of the Prabhupada memories DVDs, TKG relates how once, upon arriving to see Prabhupada ,he read a letter about to go out to all temple presidents, with which he did not agree. He then gave his arguments against it and Prabhupada again conceded and did not send the letter.

If Prabhupada was presented today with the volumes of credible research about the problems caused by dairy, the health issues many of his followers are having with diabetes, cancer and other degenerative diseases related to a diet highly based in dairy consumption, and how several of them, whom I personally know, were able to get off diabetes medication and other medications, have reduced their cancer tumors, have normalized their cholesterol levels, and are thus able to continue serving his mission with a healthy body and mind, I can’t see how Prabhupada would not concede. I doubt he would encourage a milk free diet for everyone, but instead, a dairy free diet for specific cases and a more limited one for the general population. Bir Krishna Goswami told me he remembers reading Prabhupada saying the limit should be 8 oz of milk per day. But I also read Prabhupada using thee expression “abundant quantities of milk.”

An extremist person will not concede to a convincing argument at any cost. But Prabhupada was not an extremist, he was a reasonable person. My faith in Prabhupada is not affected at all by reading statements such as the ones I presented to you and by seeing Prabhupada’s followers becoming healthy again with the help of those researches and professionals.

ADIKARTA: I am well aware of the fact that vegans are acting conscientiously by adopting their diet, but just cannot agree as to their conclusions.

LILANANDA: Fair enough, you have the right to do so. But it would be important to present convincing arguments about the conclusions you don’t agree with. Otherwise, they will not only see us as hypocrites but also as extremists, which, specifically in today’s world, is not a reputation any institution wants to have. Here is one of the comments posted on the second video of Sivaram Swami by a vegan activist who works for CBC News:

You speak a lot about how your actions “help” the cow who is lactating. Putting aside the patriarchal view that females, both human and nonhuman, should be looked upon as “mothers”, you aren’t addressing the himsa that you cause by impregnating those cows in the first place. And if, as you say in your speciesist analogy, that all cows are babies that we needn’t ask permission of, isn’t that impregnation then also tantamount to rape? “Helping” them out of the “pain” of lactating that we caused? Where is the logic here? Where is this “natural”? Regardless of how many centuries the tradition has been carried on, no domesticated cow today even exists in nature! And any similar wild species, like the wildebeest for example, has been getting along for many more centuries without ANY help from us. So I think your “tradition”, apart from being just as deceptive as conventional milk is, if not downright delusional, anything but natural or familial.

Another person wrote: in your tradition you say that cows are mothers and bulls are fathers. Which civilized human being castrates his father?

And here is another comment:

Have you thought how buffaloes in wild manage their milk after calf weans it off ? Have you thought whether cow will give so much milk after calf is weaned off if you don’t feed it controlled food and if you stop milking her after a calf is weaned off ? Cows will produce milk against their will if you milk her. I wonder how you measure willingness of a cow in your farm before you milk her. Vegans spread their message for animal welfare, so humans can let cows free. I wonder why you are promoting milk ? How does that help animals or humans ? Have you thought how many people are addicted to milk and continue to believe that milk is taken harmlessly especially in India and how this reinforces such believes and harms cows whom you consider as a mother ? Cats drink milk because like humans they are trained to drink it. Big cats (tiger, Lion etc)don’t drink cow milk! It is as unnatural for them as it is for humans. i agree humans are different species. We are selfish and cant get out of slavery mindset even after belonging to Krishna tradition. Animals are much better.

There are many other negative comments on the second one as there were many in the first one. There were many positive comments as well.

Congratulations for your cow protection agenda. It would be great if all ISKCON leadership follow your step. Specifically all GBC’s cause they have a duty to represent the kindness of Prabhupada. Thanks.”

And here is another one: I dont get why vegans are loosing theur shit over this. No animals are getting hurt! They are getting treated better yhan most children these days. If its not for you move on. All these comments are why people think vegans are nut jobs. So hell bent on their agenda theu cant see the good in what he is saying.

And one more: Respect him , he did mention he is not complete vegan. He follows vegetarian diet also. And his ethics are far way better than other vegetarians. Though I still find it exploitation. But still we can’t expect an ideal world. He is setting a good example. Cows are not getting harmed. And he does respect them.

ADIKARTA: Obviously many devotees are unhealthy for numerous reasons, as are many vegans, but I don’t thing that is sufficient reason to blame milk.

LILANANDA: As mentioned on my previous posting, this is a multidimensional issue and am glad we now agree on this point. However, it is not about milk, but about dairy in general. It is proven that milk is addictive, specially when mixed with salt, sugar, in the form of cream, cheese, etc. And this is exactly the diet we are promoting in our ISKCON society. However, several leaders and temples are seeing the downside of this diet and are changing it to a more plant-based diet. I remember visiting New Talavan last year on the occasion of the New Orleans Radha Yatra and was surprised to see sprouts as an option for breakfast, among several other healthy options. And at the Juhu temple, when I visited it about three years ago, they were serving salad every morning as part of a healthy menu.

ADIKARTA: Furthermore there are different types of milk, which you are probably aware of. Type A and type B. Most Western cows give type A, which is not as good as type B. On top of that, we both know that Krishna Himself loved cows, and consumed large quantities of milk products. Do you think He should be a vegan?

LILANANDA: Krishna can do whatever He wants to do and not be affected by material nature. However, if a Hare Krishna, a Muslim, a Christian, a vegan, a lacto-vegetarian, jump from a building, all fall. The laws of nature are the same for all of us. If we want to lead a healthy life and take proper care of the body God gave us and that belongs to Him, we need to eat properly, exercise, get enough rest, and follow proven healthy habits.

ADIKARTA: Srila Prabhupada advocated feeding the dieties a variety of milk sweets.Krishna came to teach us that living simply, having cows, was the optimum life style. Yes, we don’t agree with artificial insemination, and also we let the calves drink enough milk from their mothers to be healthy.

LILANANDA: I mentioned castration of bulls but did not see your reply to that question. As quoted above, we consider the cows as mothers and the bulls as fathers. Where is the decent human being who would castrate his father? Again, Krishna is not subject to the laws of nature.

ADIKARTA: I appreciate that some devotees like HH Bir Krishna Maharaja fully endorse the vegan diet

LILANANDA: It appears to me that you did not watch his interview with Dr. Radharadhya, otherwise you would not be writing this. Please watch the video.

ADIKARTA: …but honestly I don’t feel that Srila Prabhupada would be as pleased by his convictions, as he would by HH Sivarama swami’s wonderful contribution to the world, by establishing a wonderful farm community that exhibits the tenets of Vedic cow protection, and attracts numerous visitors.

LILANANDA: Krishna clearly says in the Bg 18.47, that it is better to engage in one’s own occupation imperfectly, than to do another’s perfectly. It is up to Prabhupada and Krishna to decide who is pleasing them the most, and not up to preposterous opinions of limited beings. And it is certainly not up to me, a mere vegan, to commentate on it.

As far as the quotes you provided, Prabhupada clearly wrote on SB 3.5.7 “The body can be maintained by any kind of food stuff…” He does favor milk, but also said health comes first, food should be taken as one likes, you judge things by the result, etc. And on one of the Prabhupada Memories DVDs, Nanda Kumara quotes Prabhupada saying: “Raw diet is the best diet.” Prabhupada was certainly not an extremist, but a pragmatic leader who encouraged us to be independent thinkers, as we have seen in the examples given by Karandhara and TKG quoted above.

This is confirmed on a famous letter to Karandhara, Dec 22, 1972, (and elsewhere): “The Krishna Consciousness Movement is for training men to be independently thoughtful and competent in all types of departments of knowledge and action, not for making bureaucracy. Once there is bureaucracy the whole thing will be spoiled. There must be always individual striving and work and responsibility, competitive spirit, not that one shall dominate and distribute benefits to the others and they do nothing but beg from you and you provide. No.”

In his purport to the Bhāgavatam 1.5.22, Prabhupada states that human intellect is developed for advancement in science, chemistry, etc. In this purport Prabhupada solely supports applying science in the service of the Lord. “Human intellect is developed for advancement of learning in art, science, philosophy, physics, chemistry, psychology, economics, politics, etc. By culture of such knowledge the human society can attain perfection of life. This perfection of life culminates in the realization of the Supreme Being, Viṣṇu…When advancement of knowledge is applied in the service of the Lord, the whole
process becomes absolute…Therefore, all the sages and devotees of the Lord have recommended that the subject matter of art, science, philosophy, physics, chemistry, psychology and all other branches of knowledge should be wholly and solely applied in the service of the Lord.”

It should not go unmentioned that I have the highest respect for you and for decades of unselfish service you have offered to Prabhupada.

Looking forward to your reply.

With best wishes, Lilananda dasa

Debate: Lilananda & Adikarta On Consuming Milk Part 3 of 3

Reply to Adikarta Prabhu 

By Lilananda dasa

September 17, 2017

Recently Adikarta Prabhu questioned certain things I published promoting veganism along with clinical data that shows how dairy promotes all stages of the cancer process and diseases such as diabetes and others. In the past 10 years I’ve lost several friends to these diseases. Those who were diagnosed with these types of illness and survived, have radically changed their diets, specifically by changing to a plant-based diet.  Based on Prabhupada’s instruction “Health comes first.”, I feel it is my duty to present the facts for the benefit of others who may be walking the same road to illness due to a poor diet.

My assertions are: 1. Vegans can be healthy 2. Casein, which makes up 87% of cow’s milk protein, promotes all stages of the cancer process and other autoimmune diseases.

In a debate, he who asserts must prove. On the other hand, if the negative wants the audience to accept the idea that there are certain defects on the assertion, then it must assume the burden of proving such defects with supporting evidence.

I indicate Adikarta with the letters AK.

Basically I will argue that in AK’s postings, we find the following problems:

  1. Consistent Lack of Supporting Evidence
  2. Straw Man Fallacy – A straw man fallacy gives the impression of refuting an opponent’s argument, while actually refuting an argument which was not advanced by that opponent.
  3. Missing The Point – A person commits the fallacy of missing the point when, while her premises do indeed support one conclusion, she draws a second, different, conclusion.
  4. Ad Hominem Fallacy – An ad hominem, short for argumentum ad hominem, means responding to arguments by attacking a person’s character, rather than to the content of their arguments.

 

1. Consistent Lack of Supporting Evidence

 

On AK’s first posting we find the following assertions:

  1. raw milk from healthy grass fed cows, is, according to the Vedas, absolutely essential for long term good health.
  2. The British health authorities are very concerned about the rise of Veganism in the UK, {more than US} because they say that in the long term many young Vegans will suffer from the Vegan diet.

Assertions A and B lack supporting evidence. AK has neither provided any supporting clinical research for the first assertion nor for the second one.

On the third posting, we find the following:

  1. They have very contradictory opinions about a lot of things, how can they possibly understand or believe in the statements about how cows milk enhances the ability to understand spiritual life?

Yet one more assertion with zero supporting evidence.  No detail on contradictory opinions nor on “They”. Who specifically are those with contradictory opinions and what are those opinions? Here are some facts that refute the three above assertions:

“I went on to direct the most comprehensive study of diet, lifestyle and disease ever done with humans in the history of biomedical research. It was a massive undertaking jointly arranged through Cornell University, Oxford University and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine. The New York Times called it the “Grand Prix of Epidemiology.” This project surveyed a vast range of diseases and diet and lifestyle factors in rural China and, more recently, in Taiwan. More commonly known as the China Study, this project eventually produced more than 8,000 statistically significant associations between various dietary factors and disease! What made this project especially remarkable is that, among the many associations that are relevant to diet and disease, so many pointed to the same finding: people who ate the most animal-based foods got the most chronic disease. Even relatively small intakes of animal-based food were associated with adverse effects. People who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease. These results could not be ignored. From the initial experimental animal studies on animal protein effects to this massive human study on dietary patterns, the findings proved to be consistent. The health implications of consuming either animal or plant-based nutrients were remarkably different.

Campbell, T. Colin; Thomas M. Campbell II. The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted And the Startling Implications for Diet, We (p. 7). Perseus Books Group. Kindle Edition.

2. Straw Man Fallacy – A straw man fallacy gives the impression of refuting an opponent’s argument, while actually refuting an argument which was not advanced by that opponent.

 

On AK’s second posting, we find additional fallacies as I will describe below.

  1. Since I have very little faith in things or opinions that directly contradict Srila Prabhupada’s views which are of course, based on the Vedas, and I really don’t think I will be able to sway your opinion, I think we should just agree to disagree.

Here we see the straw man fallacy.  AK is arguing against something I did not present. I presented clinical research results and AK is arguing against things and opinions. There is a major difference between things and opinions and the results of clinical analysis. For example, in someone’s opinion he may be very healthy, but a heart scan may show his arteries are 70% clogged. On a personal note, I have seen a friend of mine who resides in Alachua and was diagnosed with bladder cancer, have his tumor size reduced by 50% two months after changing from a lacto-vegetarian to a plant based diet. His clinical data is recorded at the Hypocrites Institute in West Palm Beach where I drove him for treatment. These are not opinions, they are facts. A variety of clinical evidence was presented in my first posting.

  1. A lot of the arguments you present seem to oppose these ideas.

And once again AK commits the same mistake by arguing against something I did not say. I presented clinical analysis reports that contradicted AK’s assertions, not simply arguments.

  1. I am well aware of the fact that vegans are acting conscientiously by adopting their diet, but just cannot agree as to their conclusions.

And yet, once again, he argues against “their conclusions” instead of what was actually presented, the clinical analysis results.

On AK’s third posting, we find another example of the same fallacy.

  1. It reminds me of the devotee who didn’t believe that they didn’t go to the moon. He lost faith in Srila Prabhupada and left him.

I have not discussed about man going to the moon or my faith in Prabhupada, but presented clinical evidence supporting my assertions.

3. Missing the Point – A person commits the fallacy of missing the point when, while her premises do indeed support one conclusion, she draws a second, different, conclusion.

 

On AK’s third posting we see that is unable to stay on point.

  1. Perhaps you should get some opinions as to whether we are wasting our time chanting Hare Krishna. I’m sure some of your Vegan advocates will say we are.

Here AK is completely missing the point.  Instead of presenting supporting evidence against my evidence or in favor of his assertions, AK decides to introduce a completely different topic.

  1. Should we then adjust that activity, and not chant because materialists don’t see any value in it?

And again, AK is unable to stay on point. Instead of focusing on defeating the evidence I provided or on presenting evidence to support his assertions, he introduces a topic that was not part of the discussion.

  1. As far as health, I am now 72 years old, and have been eating a ton of raw milk products for the past 25 years. I go on sankirtan daily, go to mangal arotika most days, haven’t seen a doctor in years, so it’s hard to believe some of your vegan evidence. Of course I could drop dead tomorrow, but at least I can say, I was healthy while I lived!

Here AK is presenting his health as clinical evidence in favor of his assertions. Well, if AK considers the health of a single person as valid clinical evidence, why clinical analysis from thousands of individuals across many countries is not acceptable?

  1. If we are to have any belief that Srila Prabhupada was actually a genuine holy man and teacher, how can we possibly negate his numerous statements about the value
  • of cows?

And yet again, instead of staying on point and presenting supporting evidence to defeat my assertions, he reaches the following conclusion: “If you present clinical evidence I cannot refute, then you are negating Prabhupada’s numerous statements.”

 

4. Ad Hominem – An ad hominem, short for argumentum ad hominem, means responding to arguments by attacking a person’s character, rather than to the content of their arguments.

 

From AK’s third posting.

  1. AS far as your CBS vegan scorn for the fact that we view women and and cows as mothers, this is another stab at Vedic culture. I am sure you know as well as I do, the famous verses about women being treated as one’s mother. Should we now reject that because some vegan doesn’t like it?

The Ad Hominem Fallacy works in the following way. The person ignores the argument and attacks the person making the argument.  Here the CBC (Not CBS) person specifically wrote: “You speak a lot about how your actions “help” the cow who is lactating. Putting aside the patriarchal view that females, both human and nonhuman, should be looked upon as “mothers”, you aren’t addressing the himsa that you cause by impregnating those cows in the first place.”

Interesting enough, even in our own movement many of our female and male devotees see our society as patriarchal.  Why does AK take the time to criticize the CBC person for his “another stab at the Vedic Culture.” for this gentleman calling Sivaram Swami’s view patriarchal. This is Ad Hominem at its best.

However, the most critical thing is that of the four arguments raised by the CBC person, AK misses the first three and then gives misinformation about the forth one. Here are the four arguments presented by the CBC news person:

  1. … you aren’t addressing the himsa that you cause by impregnating those cows in the first place.
  2. And if, as you say in your speciesist analogy, that all cows are babies that we needn’t ask permission of, isn’t that impregnation then also tantamount to rape?
  3. “Helping” them out of the “pain” of lactating that we caused? Where is the logic here? Where is this “natural”?
  4. Regardless of how many centuries the tradition has been carried on, no domesticated cow today even exists in nature! And any similar wild species, like the wildebeest for example, has been getting along for many more centuries without ANY help from us.

AK ignores the first three arguments and makes the following comment on the 4th: “Cows are not wildebeest, if you’ve ever seen a cow that has just calved, her under is very big and swollen, she needs to be milked! The calf cannot drink all the milk.” AK makes three assertions:

  1. Cows are not wildebeest
  2. Cows need to be milked
  3. The calf cannot drink all the milk

Unfortunately his assertions are problematic. Here is a video about an 800-year old wild cattle park presenting the facts.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Erqqn74J94A

Some of the points presented in the video are:

  1. These cows serve no agricultural purpose.
  2. Minute 3:24 the cattle are remarkably healthy. They get absolutely no medication at all.
  3. Minute 3:36 Imagine a calf born in July, it will be feeding on milk through the Autumn, probably around Christmas its mother will run out of milk, that calf will survive right through the winter. They are remarkably healthy.
  4. Minute 4:03 When it comes to breeding, as you can see there are a lot of bulls here, half of the cattle are male and half are female, nothing is castrated. When it comes to breeding, it is left to the bigger and better bulls, they are the ones who do the breeding.

There is even a Wild Cattle Preservation institution http://www.wildcattleconservation.org/.  There are wild cattle found in Africa, India, and parts of the Americas.

 

Let’s continue …Here AK complains about me presenting evidence that supports my views.

 

  1. You present evidence that supports your view, there is also unlimited evidence that doesn’t.

It seems that AK is unaware that in a debate, each person presents evidence that supports their view.  As far as “there is also unlimited evidence that doesn’t.”, it is up to AK to provide it.

  1. I really don’t have the time or inclination to present numerous quotes, as to the benefits of grass fed, type B milk, from loved, and protected cows. Tom Brady is a vegan, but has he shown any interest in Vedic culture?

Once again, Ad Hominem in action. As far as AK’s time, it is up to him to manage it.

  1. I just don’t understand how, as someone who has presumably studied Srila Prabhupada’s books, and teachings, you could possibly hold the opinion that you do.

And yet another Ad Hominem, attacking the person instead of providing evidence to support his assertions.

  1. it seems that you are allowing non devotees to influence your views, at the expense of Srila Prabhupada’s core

And yet one more.

  1. You are taking the opinion of non devotees, as your guide light, which to me is very unfortunate.

And more.

  1. Srila Prabhupada advocated simple living high thinking. One very important aspect of that is using oxen to work. I can just imagine our vegan friends saying “how cruel.”

Nothing related to the assertions I made, simply a personal attack on me and my vegan friends.

 

Before I close this essay, I would like to provide one more video about the cruelty of castrating animals. On his third posting AK writes: “As far as castrated bulls, there are many reasons. One being is that some of them become more manageable, they also become stronger. I’m sure you’ve heard the statement, ” as strong as an ox.” It is a very quick simple procedure that can be performed at a very young age. From my experience with cows, it doesn’t affect their quality of life. They are just as happy as bulls.”

Has AK accurately described the castration procedure? Not really. Here are some facts in a video that might shock you. Open the link and scroll down to castration.

http://www.animalsaustralia.org/issues/cattle-painful-procedures.php

Conclusion

Throughout AK’s three postings he has not provided verifiable clinical evidence that supports his assertions, other than his own view of his health. Well, if AK considers the health of a single person as valid clinical evidence, why similar evidence from thousands of individuals across many countries is not acceptable? Furthermore, I request AK to refrain from personal attacks and stay on topic.

I respect the sincere attempt of many devotees like AK to spread Krishna consciousness in what they believe to be the best way. However, I request AK to be more accurate in what he says and writes.  Accuracy matters and spreading misinformation is misleading. It is my earnest hope that I have not offended any Vaiṣṇava, including AK, in the course of explaining my views about diet and how it can help friends and many others. I pray that we can all work together to fulfill Prabhupada’s ultimate vision of a Kṛishna conscious world.

Final reply from AK

September 17, 2017 at 7:01am

AS I said all along we will never agree. I really cannot be bothered to waste my time trying to prove that milk is healthy, to someone who accepts so called scientific evidence over and above the Vedic conclusion. I think its sad that you are prepared to have faith in non devotees conclusions over and above Srila Prabhupada’s and the whole traditional Vedic perspective on cows and milk. No matter how professionally you present your arguments, and refute mine, I think you are misleading people with your posts and undermining Srila Prabhupada’s efforts to establish the benefits of cow protection. Of course you will not agree, so, as I said at the start of this discussion, let’s just agreee to disagree. This is my last post on the conversation with you. Hare Krishna.

Final note from Lilananda dasa

With the understanding that, as AK said, the above was his last post, and based on the fact that throughout his postings AK has not provided verifiable clinical evidence that supports his assertions and defeats mine, I consider this debate concluded.

My assertions are: 1. Vegans can be healthy 2. Casein, which makes up 87% of cow’s milk protein, promotes all stages of the cancer process and other autoimmune diseases.

10 easy steps to become a better Hare Krishna

Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s chanting of the Hare Krsna mantra must be understood to be devoid of all offenses. The ten offenses against the holy name are as follows:

  1. To blaspheme a devotee of the Lord
  2. To consider the Lord and the demigods to be on the same level or to think that there are many gods
  3. To neglect the orders of the spiritual master
  4. To minimize the authority of scriptures (Vedas)
  5. To interpret the holy name of God
  6. To commit sins on the strength of chanting
  7. To instruct the glories of the Lord’s name to the unfaithful
  8. To compare the chanting of the holy name with material piety
  9. To be inattentive while chanting the holy name
  10. To be attached to material things in spite of chanting the holy name.
Caitanya-caritamrta Adi 7.73