Can one justify a Belief that harms the Environment? – 16 Mar 16

Guru

We are extremely busy now with the restaurant on top of our other responsibilities and I can tell you, we are learning a lot of new things! Obviously, we also make many new experiences and meet even more people than before. One group of restaurant visitors came and before sitting down asked us if we could do one thing for them: could we serve all of their food on disposable plates? Of course also with disposable spoons and glasses.

After asking once in the kitchen, we could confirm that this would be possible. Out of curiosity, Ramona asked why they had this special need and they told her it was ‘out of spiritual reasons’. Another one elaborated a bit, explaining that they had a saint who had put up certain rules – and one of them was not to eat from pots that any other person had ever eaten from.

Of course we did our best to satisfy them, cooking in normal pots, bringing it in our serving pots to the table but serving on plastic plates and handing out plastic spoons which we somehow happened to have. They were more than happy with the food and told us that they would definitely come back again.

It is our effort, in our restaurant, to satisfy all customers. While we obviously catered for what was possible for us, we inwardly cringed at the result of the meal: there was a whole lot of waste! Plastic waste on top, a material that is not decomposable, which will linger and have negative effects for our environment for decades, if not centuries.

Why? I really don’t have any problem with people believing whatever they want to believe. At the same time however, I have the right to disagree with it. I think it is wrong to pollute our earth for coming generations just because a man, who is just human like you and I, thought he should tell his followers to do so. It is each person’s own decision – but in the end, I believe humanity suffers from such beliefs.

At the same time, there are of course situations when we cannot avoid plastic either. When people order food for take-away for example, it would be difficult to pack it in an environmental-friendly way. Whenever plastic is not necessary, however, we prefer avoiding it!

Well, after this group’s visit, we talked about what we could do and we said we would be able to change it for next time: we will serve them on plates and bowls made out of leaves – a more eco-friendly version! They will have their religious or spiritual restrictions respected and we our environmental-friendly ones! A good deal for all parties involved!

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