Dealing with Doctors · Education · Health · Love · Nutrition · Paleo diet · Raising vegan children · Souls · Uncategorized · Why be vegan

My Brother “Tommy” Has Passed On

UPDATE 1/2/2018: New photo added (amid text) of Tom at age 53.

My younger brother, Tom, had suffered with type 2 diabetes for a long time. He’d kept it a secret from everyone until late 2015 when he could no longer ignore and neglect it. Well, just this November 19, Sunday at 11:00 pm, diabetes finally took his life.

Courtesy of the CDC

Cardiac arrest explained

His death came as a result of cardiac arrest, a.k.a. sudden cardiac death. One of the problems he developed due to the diabetes was heart failure with tachycardia (rapid heartbeat). Tachycardia is a great risk factor for cardiac arrest, where the heart’s electrical system goes bad, the heart starts quivering instead of beating, the brain is quickly devoid of blood, and the person feels faint, blacks out, falls down and stops breathing. Essentially dead. Unless someone can work a miracle by doing chest compressions and CPR. But the real remedy is to quickly apply defibrillators to the person’s chest to electrically stun the heart back into beating and pumping blood. Only about 10% of people who have cardiac arrest survive without defibrillation within about four minutes from blacking out. About 30% of them survive after defibrillation is done promptly. So cardiac arrest is seriously deadly unless one is very lucky.

When saving someone’s life is not merciful

In Tom’s case, bringing him back to that terribly sick and suffering body would have been a dreadful disservice to him. But the paramedics tried and tried for about half an hour. They got no response. Cardiac arrest was a merciful death for someone so sick for so long. He started getting medical treatment very late in the disease, got the usual tests and prescriptions and their side effects, and some natural and herbal remedies he was trying, but he just couldn’t seem to get a handle on the situation and his body kept on getting worse. He had short bouts of improvement where he was getting better, then severe setbacks which took over in the end. He got the best results by far when eating nothing but vegetables, mostly raw, along with some supplements. He had not yet been told to take insulin shots.

His having high blood sugar for so long had wreaked havoc on everything. He even lost most of his teeth, which diabetics are prone to. He had serious edema and ascites—where the abdomen fills with “water” (protein fluid) and just keeps on getting bigger. He was likely headed for amputations due to tissue death in the extremities (starting with toes usually), was having vision problems (many diabetics go blind or partially so). Then there was the nerve pain, terrible shooting pains from nerve damage due to the disease. He had a chronic cough partly due to the ace inhibitor he was taking to “protect his kidneys” and often was out of breath. Couldn’t wear shoes other than too-big flip flops due to chronic edema (swelling). The list could go on (infections and such). I mean, wow, he really suffered in the final stages, full-time for two plus years.

See here for a basic explanation of diabetes: https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/tc/type-2-diabetes-topic-overview#1

When all hope is lost

Tom’s doctor had urged him to get to a cardiologist, but he’d refused. I don’t know how much good that would have done; it seems medical treatment is so often sadly disappointing, only leading to more and more and deeper and deeper, every “remedy” causing further problems. Some people are fortunate to have a reasonable quality of life after intensive medical treatments, like pacemakers to control the heart beat, which may have done Tom some good. But in his condition, he couldn’t even work up the desire to try, and he couldn’t be forced. It was so hard for him to get around at all; he hadn’t gone upstairs (or even one step up) at the house for many months.

Tom DrLic. pic at 53
Tom at 53 – from driver’s license

Of course I and my brother would have helped him and taken him anywhere, been there for him, but he had given up hope. He could have had a procedure called “paracentesis” where they drain the ascitic fluid from the abdomen, and had even gotten his doctor’s approval; but then was warned by one who does the procedure that diabetics are not well advised to do it because of their high risk of infection (peritonitis). So he was discouraged from that, and just went on suffering with a hugely bloated abdomen. And without dealing with the underlying cause (the heart failure), paracentesis would have been only a temporary solution. So, what hope was there?

My poor dear brother “Tommy.” (I use quotes because he didn’t like “Tommy,” preferred Tom or Thomas, but I use “Tommy” affectionately, remembering him as an adorable toddler.)

A message from the other side

Tom’s gone from this world and I’m not sure where he is now. I’d asked him the next day (Monday) out loud, to send me a signal if he was now happy, in a good place, safe, protected, that loved ones can be together again in some all-new and beautiful existence. The following morning as I was awake lying in bed I heard a 3-beat “wooden wind chime” noise from the living room. It startled me because I have nothing set up anywhere to use that tone, and anyways, there was no alert tone set up anywhere in the house (I don’t even do that).

The noise obviously came from my cell phone, so I went through it and listened to all the message alerts and there it was, number 6 in the list, titled “message 3.” I believe the tone had sounded at 7:32am. All that is significant for the number 3, since Tom knew I had a superstitious “thing” about the number 3 as being good, my “lucky number,” all that. Now, I’d never used that tone in my cell phone (or anywhere else) for anything. And there was no reason for that sound (or any other) to have come from the phone. No reason at all…other than my brother’s spirit answering my question from the previous day with a “YES” in a way I would “get it.”

People can believe that or not, think I’m nutty (true enough), or whatever they want to think or say. But I know what happened. And I’m trusting that my brother’s spirit is indeed in a wonderful new existence free of all pain, suffering and death, only experiencing bliss and great adventures throughout the universe and maybe even beyond. Free to travel as the wind and be wherever he wants to be, with only loved ones for company whenever those spirits desire company.

Had I forced Tom to be vegan, and thereby caused his death?

Tom wasn’t vegan or even vegetarian, in case anyone reading is thinking, “Aha, veganism is deadly just like we say!” Or other such nonsense. Tom had a lifelong struggle with food addiction and obesity, and was into Atkins and “paleo” type dieting which he’d believed the hype about from a young age. I often tried to convince him to be vegan or at least mostly so. He tried once in awhile but could not give up the meat, eggs, dairy, along with all the rich treat foods like desserts and such. An eating addiction is a terrible thing. Chronic overeating, especially of animal fats is the cause of type 2 diabetes: https://www.riseofthevegan.com/blog/diabetes-reversal-with-plant-based-diet, aside from the obesity it causes. Tom’s addictive nature was something I wished he could’ve overcome. But he couldn’t. And he suffered badly for it. I truly believe he suffered far more than enough to atone for his wrongs in life.

In closing

I miss him so; even miss bickering with him, his sarcasm and sharp mind. He had a great compassionate side which was sparingly revealed. I love him always and only wish we could have done more together, communicated better, etc., etc. But we did our best, considering our family history (which I won’t go into).

If you have someone you love and they’re suffering with overeating and obesity, do beware of this disease, diabetes. I once had the overeating and obesity problem too. Big appetites, obesity and diabetes run in our family. Thankfully, veganism has pretty much solved that problem for me. The body can only take so much abuse from too much fatty or rich, taxing food over years and years. The pancreas can only do so much producing of insulin and secreting it into the bloodstream, regulating the body’s blood sugar level. Once the pancreas is shot…or the insulin it produces is stopped by fat from getting the sugar into the cells, so the sugar remains and builds up in the blood…it is a hell of a thing to deal with.

Food addiction took our little brother away from us at only 55 years of age. Try not to let anything like that happen to you.

Below are some images of Tom from when he was young, in loving tribute…

Tommy at 3 all dressed up
Tommy at 1 yr. and me in goofy Hawaiian dance show garb
Tommy at about 3 with Santa
Tom and best buddy Mark at about 4 yrs old
Tom (age 5), me and our aunt on Easter Sunday 1967
Tom at 12 after he’d lost a bunch of weight and feeling great

Sigh… 💧

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Animal Liberation · Animals are awesome · Education · Human behavior · Karma · Love · Morality · philosophy · Reincarnation · Religion · Souls · Uncategorized · Why be vegan

The Meaning of Life – Making Sense of Our Cosmic Insane Asylum

We need a new religion…

St. Peter - "Any animal which is slaughtered is defiled, and its meat defiles."
St. Peter – “Any animal which is slaughtered is defiled and its meat defiles.”

If souls are eternal, and I believe that’s so, God is all of us, every sentient life ever born to die on this planet, for all time. These unfathomable numbers of births and deaths must be endured by God to cleanse itself, to filter out the bad from the good and eventually to be pure bliss without the pain and misery of the disease called evil. As far as what “God” is, exactly, I don’t know…we’re all in the dark about that. As an infinitesimal part of said God while here as individuals, we’re all far too cut off to see the whole, out there, somewhere. Or everywhere. Where “there” is no place we can understand.

A huge part of the cleansing process would be to purify the marginal, as in good Germans or those who are conscious of the sources of their meat, and who only support necessary cruelty, or who remain ignorant and know not what they do. Those who enable evil but are basically good themselves, often amazingly good in other ways. The marginal must be made purely good somehow, to be welcome back to the self-perfecting “creator.” That would be what we think of as heaven. While pure evil, when it is at last firmly identified, is sent off to its own reward with only itself to prey upon. As in “reap what you sow.” The obvious goal is for goodness to be in real peace at last. Rest In Peace. God is to become pure goodness, pure love, joy, all things wonderful. But the process itself is terribly messy…hellish. Here we all are, in it.

The religion mankind instead teaches itself…

The angry, egotistical, vengeful, blood-lusting, cruel god of the bibles would be a manmade charlatan, in this way of looking at it all. A demiurge, as in the Gnostic Christian view. The demiurge is defined as a being subordinate to the Supreme Being (the pure goodness in all life and the universe). This “false god” is considered to be the controller of the material world and antagonistic to all that is purely spiritual. The purpose of that, I guess, would be to keep us all in the dark, to keep our trials a total mystery to us and make them as difficult as possible. For many of us to act as mindless faithfuls, believing and attempting to live according to bible texts which rational minds see as madness.

Another purpose for said false god would be to prevent this purging and purification of the true Supreme Being, because this false god is evil itself (as in “devil”) and doesn’t want to be banished. That makes what’s behind the sadistic, brutal teachings of those bibles a lot clearer, to me anyways.

Earth as Purgatory…

In my estimation, the real God’s purging process is what we are all part of here. As in purgatory, where souls are being tested and sorted out, and where others are atoning for their sins before going to heaven. Purgatory, a state of mental anguish or suffering. Where those born as humans, possessing moral knowledge and judgment, are tested to the fullest extent by our treatment of supposedly “inferior” others, whether animal or human, but most significantly, animals.

I believe our suffering as humans also goes into account as far as our eternal fates, which would only be fair. And I believe those humans who die before they can learn and prove themselves get more chances as humans. One thing would be certain: Nothing but proven goodness would be going back “home.”

Hindu Elephant God
Hindu Elephant God

All animals everywhere would be housing God/human souls atoning for their sins before going to heaven. As in the person who regretfully supported animal abuse and killing who must endure life as a totally innocent pig or cow in a meat farm to be made to understand and become pure before being welcome back home, where evil is no longer tolerated or suffered. Some humans would require many lifetimes here as others…anyone from squirrels to cows to creatures like fleas (parasitic people?) who can be justifiably killed for being a health hazard, or whoever…before being welcome back.

Our past life(lives) seem to be obliterated from our minds while we’re here, for reasons unknown, but perhaps because the influences of the past might keep us from further learning and thus prevent our being purified, requiring more physical lives to sort us out.

The non-human (innocent and unknowing animal) existence must teach the soul a lesson that cannot be learned when one possesses human moral knowledge and judgment. Since when the individual had that great opportunity, that knowledge, he/she failed, but not to a hopeless extent. These marginal, benign but evil-enabling souls wouldn’t learn as fully functioning humans, so they have to learn as “other” (whether animals or desperately disadvantaged people, likely victims of unjust violence and undeserved deaths). Those souls clearly deemed hopelessly evil would go straight from being human to being forever banished to exist with only their kind, i.e., hell.

The Buddhists are right or mostly so?

phra_ajan_jerapunyo-abbot_of_watkungtaphaoI used to believe this was a fruitless, even counterproductive process because the evil required to “punish” those now innocent animals would be never-ending. So reincarnation seemed sadistic and pointless to me. But being born as animal is not actually punishment, it’s purification. Their having good lives knowing the love and care of good people teaches them just as much as their being in pain and fear from birth to death at the hands of the sadistic and/or foolish. Either way, they learn empathy from the viewpoint of the most vulnerable. They understand why evil must be identified and cast out forever.

The choices involved for humans regarding animals and the resulting actions we take are vital to judging us and sorting us out. So it must be done. As random as it all seems…and is…there is a method to the madness. Nature’s violence and predation are of course involved in the process as much as anything else…those animals, too, are God/human souls being purified.

In this purgatory, the incentive to put an end to people’s exploitation/abuse/killing of animals is as strong as ever, since that also serves to put and end to the evil, not to perpetuate it. This is the very good reason why animal advocates are more and more compelled speak up, to “preach” to everyone, as hated as we are for it. Those who know better, do better, and otherwise hopeless souls get “saved” in the bargain. Best of all, this world becomes far more beautiful, less violent, less frightening…far less hellish. No one loses from that. And soon this place of predators and prey, kill to eat, survival of the fittest, food chains, etc. …this place full of chaos, bloodshed and anguish…ceases to be necessary any longer. Everything will be sorted out and everything will be in perfection, forevermore.

pig_lactationDo I think my being vegan makes me close to perfect, heaven bound?

I don’t know. I don’t claim to know how the decisions are made about who gets to go where and when, but I’m more and more trusting that the system makes perfect sense and that justice prevails in the end, that everything works out for the best, despite what a miserable hell this world is for so many innocent ones, as well as for those of us who empathize and suffer continually for the most persecuted and suffering of others.

I of course don’t know for certain where I’ll go after this life, but certainly hope it’s heaven (who wouldn’t?), or if I’m not pure & good enough yet, to a human life here again but in an enlightened, healthy, secure family that is already reliably vegan for ethical reasons, so that I can more effectively help to get this extensive and excruciating process to completion. Or maybe I need to live an animal existence to perfect my soul…and I would certainly hope to be a companion animal for someone like myself or better, and never victimized by evil. Another (selfish) reason to fight for animal rights and human kindness everywhere.

Most importantly, I believe the animals and other innocent victims of evil here are in bliss, safe forever at the end of their “processing.” Back home. But a far, far better home. A perfect home.

A personal memory and hard-learned lesson…

chasing_ghosts_at_cha%cc%82teau_de_vianden_3940080719My grandma’s spirit somehow communicated all of this to me in brief seconds the night after she died in our home, although I was typically slow in catching on, all caught up in teen angst and a custom brand of misery. She was my first close family death and it was beyond sad, it was life-changing. On that strange night and afterward, she spiritually got through to me that animals are far more important than people realized and that everything will be made perfect in the end. She came to me as I lay in bed (scared the living daylights out of me) to get this message through, probably because she was soon to be reborn as an animal to be purified. After that brief appearance as a ghost in late 1973 and then for awhile as a part of my mind, grandma was then not heard from again, even though I needed much more guidance.

Guide yourself, young doofus, it all seemed to say.

I first went vegetarian for awhile in the year following grandma’s ethereal message, but it didn’t last and I was still somewhat of a malignant asshole for many years, interspersed with being the opposite (and vegetarian off & on), as if to compensate. But that important seed was firmly planted, and here I am, a far better person than ever possible before that. So, I’m one of these many obsessed vegans and animal liberation blatherers of today. But it is vital. Thank you, grandma, for that salvation.

So in conclusion…

516396125_1280x720The real God is good. Goodness is its own reward. Evil requires retribution as in banishment. Reap what you sow. Have faith and be kind and fight for it. Live by the Golden Rule. Clichés, yes, but meaningful and true. Earn your way back to our newly perfect…Home. Best of all, to be with all of your loved ones once again…perfectly devoid of evil, suffering and death.

Animals are awesome · Animals in Nature · Karma · Love · Photography · Souls · Uncategorized

May all the tortured become forever free as birds in flight

I find birds magical, of the world but free from it as well, as long as their wings are intact and they remain unharmed. So much easier to remain unharmed when you can simply fly into the sky and far away. Except for firearms, that is, used by envious people to totally unfairly bring down these amazing, beautiful creatures. And except for the pet trade and such, which puts them in little cages and leaves them there for life…which is too unspeakable for me to write about. What could I possibly say to make that go away?

Birds are an ancient life form still reminiscent of dinosaurs. Most birds are omnivores, but they range from strictly carnivorous to vegan (grain/seeds/fruit), and of course the carnivores must do so to avoid torturous deaths from starvation. Unlike people. Birds are amazingly tough and brave. Able to soar through the skies with that special view of this mad world, contemplating us all, thinking what, I can only guess at. A “bird’s eye view” I’d love to have…

Country House - Pesaro, Italy
Country House – Pesaro, Italy

I want such powerful wings owned forever-after by all who’ve suffered unjustly while trapped in this world. Of course, no one would be tearing apart and eating anyone else in this new sort of life, devoid of suffering and death. The way I’d have created if possessing such power.

Flightless birds like emus, ostriches and others (ratites), I feel terrible for. Such a cruel thing, to have too small wings (or too heavy bodies) which won’t let them fly. They deserve nothing less than compassion from us.

As for what cruel, abusive humans deserve…humans who should know much better? Simply whatever exacts justice for their deliberately, sadistically ruining existence for others. Certainly the opposite of magnificent wings. Away with them, to somewhere else entirely, to never inflict their awful hatred on others again. Yes I dream a lot. Why not?

Some lovely photos & thoughtful quotes:

american_robin
American Robin

“The robin flew from his swinging spray of ivy on to the top of the wall and he opened his beak and sang a loud, lovely trill, merely to show off. Nothing in the world is quite as adorably lovely as a robin when he shows off – and they are nearly always doing it.” ~ Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Red-Crowned Amazon Parrot – Olympus Digital Camera
rose_crowned_fruit_dove_m12
Rose-Crowned Fruit Dove
pigeon
Pigeon

“Birds were created to record everything. They were not designed just to be beautiful jewels in the sky, but to serve as the eyes of heaven.”  ~ Suzy Kassem, The Writings of – Rise Up and Salute the Sun

black-headed_gull_-_st_jamess_park_london_-_nov_2006
Black-Headed Gull – St. James’s Park, London, Nov. 2006
starling
Starling
prothonotary-warbler
Prothonotary Warbler
common_kingfisher
Common Kingfisher
two_gannets
Gannets

“Somewhere a bird sang, its chant hanging plaintive and melancholy in the still air…I think it’s a sort of lark or something. Our tradition has it that they sing with the voices of lost lovers. If the stars are smiling on them, you will hear its mate call back in a moment.” ~ Jane Johnson, The Tenth Gift

kittiwake-gulls
Kittiwake Gulls
vanellus
Vanellus
beautiful-firetail
Beautiful Firetail
curlew-sandpiper
Curlew Sandpiper

The sun’s rays have vision and give us vision. However, it is the birds’ eyes and the two invisible angels by your side that record everything. Nothing goes unnoticed throughout the universe. Wherever there is a vibration, there are eyes and ears. Some energies don’t need ears or vision to see or hear, they can feel what is in your heart and tap into all your sins and fears.” ~ Suzy Kassem, The Writings of – Rise Up and Salute the Sun

superb_fairy_wren2_liquidghoul
Superb Fairy Wren
allens_hummingbird
Allens Hummingbird

“I pray to the birds because they remind me of what I love rather than what I fear. And at the end of my prayers, they teach me how to listen.” ~ Terry Tempest Williama, Refuge, An Unnatural History of Family and Place

Broad-Billed Hummingbird (Male), Santa Rita Lodge, Madera Canyon, Near Green Valley, Arizona
Broad-Billed Hummingbird (Male), Madera Canyon, Arizona
Glossy Ibis in Quintana Winters
Glossy Ibis in Quintana Winters

“The stork is voiceless because there is really nothing to say.” ~ Will Cuppy

egret_tasmania
Egret – Tasmania
atlantic-puffin
Atlantic Puffin
great_egret_on_morro_strand_state_beach_morro_bay_ca_great-egret-morro-strand-6-17-06036_324317356
Great Egret on Morro Strand State Beach, Morrow Bay, California
crested_tern_tasmania
Crested Tern – Tasmania

“Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter, In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore.” ~ Edgar Allen Poe, The Raven

raven-ingrid-taylar-flickr
Raven – Ingrid Taylar, Flickr

[All images are public domain, free to reuse, or attributed to owner where required.]