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The Great Experiment in Vegetarianism and Meditation

great experiment in vegetarianismQ: I eat meat, however I have decided to adopt a strict vegetarian diet for sixty days. If it does enable me to go deeper into meditation, I will never eat meat again. My question is, is sixty days long enough for me to experience a difference? Or how long (approximately) should it take for me to see results?

In yoga everything is individual, and that includes yogic diet. The present condition of your bodies, gross and subtle determine your usual state and function of mind. Therefore I could not at all say when a perceptible change will come about from a vegetarian diet.

Many years ago I taught a two-week seminar on yoga at a university in northern California. A friend had been slated to teach, but asked me to take his place. I agreed to do so, free of charge, on one condition: everyone in the seminar would have to be purely vegetarian for the two weeks. This was worked out with the university and accepted by the nearly twenty students in the seminar. To my surprise, after only one week they had noticed such a difference in their minds–which included better functioning in their other classes and even one examination–that they declared they would be vegetarians for life. Three years later I met some of them in India, and they were still vegetarians.

For a really dramatic change I find that six months and three years are somehow magic numbers. By that I mean that after six months of being a vegetarian a very marked difference is noticed, and after a total of three years as a vegetarian the change is seen to be astounding. The bacteria in the digestive tract of meat-eaters is anaerobic. Since oxygen is inseparable from evolving life, such bacteria are literal death-bearers, and one of the reasons that vegetarians have been proven to have at least three hundred percent stronger immune systems than non-vegetarians. Anyhow, if a person becomes a strict vegetarian (no lapses and no cheating), after three years the bacteria in the digestive tract have completely changed over to aerobic bacteria: oxygen-based and life-giving. This is, I expect the reason for the three-year period.

So enter upon the Great Experiment and see what happens. This I can tell you: if you eat junk food, even if vegetarian, do not expect much improvement. And if you use nicotine or alcohol, both of which are much more harmful than meat, then who knows what will result?

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