Contemporary knowledge about God, Evolution, and the meaning of human life.
Methodology of spiritual development.
How God Can Be Cognized/The Initial Stage
The Initial Stage
It was the first, the initial stage — stage of reading books, learning of theory, acceptance of ethical concepts of the School. After the reading of book “How God Can Be Cognized” and full acceptance of all that is written in it — I immediately began to reconsider my entire “system of values”.
One of the first major steps was the transition to the killing-free nutrition. What struck me most at that moment — that I have never thought myself about it!
I remember, as a child, I was read the story of someone from the Russian classics about a sentimental young lady, in front of whom a pig was killed. She was shocked and fainted, but was eating the meat of that pig with an appetite in the evening of the same day. I despised her and was very proud of the fact that I am not such as her. What a slap in the face my ego got when the understanding came that I was no better than she!...
For all of us give our tacit permission for the killing of animals when we buy meat or fish products...
Why when we hear about the murder of man we cry out in horror: “How can man encroach on someone’s life?! For life is — holy!” Or, if someone killed a dog or cat, we again are indignant: “Oh, he is a monster, subhuman!”
Why then do we so easily accept the killings of other animals? I could not understand: “why does it not hurt us?”
When I was trying to answer myself on this question, I saw that only thought patterns hide the horror of this problem from heart and mind. Most people perceive the world as if being blindfolded. And they are put on since the early childhood, when parents give a child the first view of the world by saying: “Oak is — a tree, grass is — green, meat and fish are — food”. And this initial information becomes an axiom requiring no proof. This information turns into a solid foundation on which a person builds his or her further relationships with the environment.
When I realized what a crime against animals I had been committing during my whole life — I was shocked to tears! I was not a heartless person! How could I allow animals to suffer because of my tastes?!
I was repenting for a very long time and my throat was being compressed from crying…
In the future, I met a total absence of understanding and the rejection of this ethical concept among people when I tried to explain to them why I refused to eat the flesh of animals. I heard a lot of absurdity! For example: “The animals eat meat! And what distinguishes animals from people? Nothing! We all are mammals”. It turned out that not all people even understand the meaning of the word “mammals”*.
... One of my friends liked to repeat that the most important thing for her in life was love. But when I offered her to switch to a cruelty-free diet, she said:
“Ah, yes... I feel sorry for the animals. But it is so convenient — to eat a cervelat at breakfast*!”
And others just started yelling angrily:
“Why do you not eat meat? It's sectarianism!”
They were mostly perturbed by my rejection to eat meat on the basis of ethical grounds! If I had referred to doctor’s orders or just due to a whim, they would not say anything against this.
It was a mystery for me why the anti-spiritual motto of “We have to love ourselves!” was met with "hurrah!” among most people, while actions, which are based on love for others, were causing a “righteous anger” or... terrible suspicions...
For a while, I was trying to maintain relationships with some of those people: for we were relatives... But I soon realized that the true relatives are not the people who have common biological ancestry or who form family clans due to other aims. Such people possess just kindred bodies. But real relatives are — soul mates: people who have the same aspirations in life and are directed by common spiritual principles!
By the way, it is a very rare case when soul mates live together under the roof of one house. I was extremely lucky: my daughter and my father accepted the basic ethical principles described in the books of Vladimir Antonov! And I perceive this as another invaluable gift of God!
… So I was learning to live a new life: I was learning to live in a state of love and trying to perform those initial exercises, which were described in the book “How God Can Be Cognized”.