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Stephen's comments on Bible-based diet

A few posts ago we highlighted an article called, Faithful embrace Bible-based diet. The article highlighted a raw food/bible-based meeting hosted by Brenda Lee at the Genesis Healing Center.

We'd like to thank WLIR reader, Stephen, for sharing his first hand experience of attending this meeting and and what it means to be raw in a predominantly christian community:

I was in attendance at this "Bible Based" raw food meeting last Saturday. I was surprised to see there was a newspaper write up of it. I went as a member of the Nashville Raw food meetup, but most of the people there were not from that group. I think most of the people had heard about it from churches and whatnot, and the way the meeting was conducted made me very uncomfortable. We had to pray over the food in a very christian way, and the insistance that eating raw food because the bible says so is just ridiculous to me. Eating raw food is good for you, yes... but the bible doesn't say anything about it. The bible talks about BREAD, fish, locusts, honey...

Since moving to Nashville and discovering the raw food community here is predominantly christian, I have found myself in a strange position.

I am not religious at all whereas most of these people are, yet raw food is important to all of us and we need to support each other. In fact, my best raw friend here is a wonderful christian woman... however, she has never made me feel uncomfortable like I felt at this potluck(which was not advertised as a "bible based" food gathering to our raw food group. I just thought it was going to be a normal raw potluck). So, a challenge to community building as it is that raw foodists seem to either be ultra progressive yoga types or fundamentalist christians, I think it is probably good for all of us to try and forge relationships with people of different mindsets and work together in ways that we can.

However, I don't think I will be attending any more potlucks held at Brenda Lee's center. Aside from the pushy christian agenda, she also is a very aggressive business woman. She was trying to plug all of her colonic services and bottles of supplements to no end. She also has a chef that will made food for cost if people don't want to bring something. So her chef made a big brocoli/raisin salad. After not being able to figure out what kind of raw nut butter the dressing was made out of, I asked him... and he told me it was Nayonaise! I thought it was safe to assume things made by the chef at a so called raw retreat center would be raw, but apparantly not. And then they either threw away all the leftovers or stole them(and there were lots) when we were listening to the lecture, which was the one saving grace of the day because the guest speaker was wonderful. Then they had the nerve to expect us to act appreciative for washing and drying all the tupperware after the y threw away or stole all the leftovers.

I'm sorry vent so much about my experience here, but even after ranting to all my friends about it for the last few days, I am still not over it. I am not normally the type to dwell on the negative, but I just had such a bad experience at this potluck, and it drives me crazy that all the reviews for it in that newspaper article and on the raw meetup site have been glowingly positive except for mine and one other who was also offended by the christian agenda pushing.

On a positive note, I LOVE this blog!!! It's fabulous!

Thanks Stephen!

Comments

Renee

Just say you hated it because you don't like christianity and a 'pushy christian agenda' whatever that means. Sheesh.

sh

for me, this brings up something I've been thinking about for a while is that I feel like raw food is often turned into a religion. I personally find it very alienating when I go to these raw food potlucks or whatever and it's turned into this like whole spirtual journey type thing. but I'm respectful about it. I think anything can be turned into a religion so raw food is no exception.

I personally like to view raw food from a practical perspective as opposed to a religious one. I personally just feel and look so much better when I eat raw.

Renee

Well personally, when I started going raw, it made reevaluate every other aspect of my life. I think thinking about one's spiritual journey is inevitable when on this path. Maybe you were just around people who really got into their faith as a result of raw food and for certain christian sects, telling people about Christ is mandatory. Maybe it's the aggressive business pushing that bothers, as I wasn't there and can't say for sure what you experienced. However, I've been in situations where I've had to say a firm NO to people who are trying to 'add on' the sale. Oh well maybe a different potluck or something. I do agree that anything can be turned into an obsession or a religion as you put it. I happen to like religion but when people take it too far, it's turned into something beyond a system of beliefs.

Vince

I think I would have felt exactly the same way you did Stephen. Alot of Christian Fundies are aways looking for a new way to sneek their 'message' into community activities. I know, I used to be one.

Jason

Best of luck trying to find a raw food community/family you can relate to Stephen. It can get lonely being a raw foodist in general, and then more so to feel out of place when you finally think you've discovered a family and group of "like-mided" people. I can totally relate. But the raw-living foods community is growing exponentially and becoming more and more diverse. From a broader perspective, we just all have to find out what works for us and what doesn't. I would just scratch it off as one of life's way of throwing us interesting learning experiences. And last, remember to enjoy life! :-)

sarah

Hey, Stephen. Sorry you had such a lousy time. People are just people, you know? There will always be type A people in the world. Being a Christian doesn't mean you can't be ambitious and on a learning curve. We are just people, too. Honestly, I wouldn't have been comfortable with it either. I've never been to a raw food event or other healing event that did't bring up Eastern religion concepts as the norm. I could choose to be offended... sometimes I am. It depends on how much I'm willing to love people with different idiologies and priorities. Sometimes I'm just tired of not having the kind of connecting I need. It is exhausting not having a spiritually neutral group around when you want to connect about raw foods and not go into the"spiritual" stuff. So I just want to acknowledge your frustation. Maybe that will be enough to neutralize it a bit. Seriously, I feel your pain. I'd offer to pray in a real friend for you but I don't want to irritate you. ... Laugh with me Stephen.;) ... maybe I will anyway. Have a good one. Sarah

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