Religious rules about what people might eat and drink. Most religions order and regulate what people eat and drink. Sometimes they make consuming and ingesting into RITUALS. Examples include the Japanese tea ceremony and the Christian EUCHARIST. Sometimes they train their adherents to slaughter animals in particular methods or dedicate food to spiritual beings or for spiritual functions. That is, they SACRIFICE and make choices. Sometimes they ask followers to surrender consuming, ingesting, or each, both partially or solely, for a restricted time period. This is FASTING, which Muslims, for instance, do in the course of the month of Ramadan. Religions additionally make guidelines about strange consuming and ingesting. That is, they've dietary legal guidelines. Dietary legal guidelines reply such questions as what meals people ought to and shouldn't eat, who might put together and serve food, and when and how a lot people might eat. There might be no merchandise on which all religions agree.
REGULATIONS CONCERNING MEAT
One of the most typical subjects for dietary legal guidelines issues the consuming of meat. Some religions don't enable the consuming of meat in any respect. Traditionally, most Hindus of the very best spiritual standing haven't eaten meat. Other Hindus take into account some meat and animal merchandise, corresponding to milk, extra acceptable than others, corresponding to beef. Many Buddhists have practiced vegetarianism. So have Jains, the Pythagoreans of historic Greece, Manichaeans, and some Taoists. In the final many years of the 20th century a lot of North Americans adopted vegetarianism. They typically did so as a result of they needed a nutritious diet, a food regimen that was accountable to the atmosphere, or each.
Other religions enable the consuming of meat however strictly regulate which meats could also be eaten. The Jewish legal guidelines of kashrut—extra colloquially, kosher meals—are a great instance. Traditional Muslims observe lots of the similar restrictions on meat merchandise as Jews. Christians don't.
Observant Jews eat water animals so long as they've scales and ﬁ ns. Therefore, sole and trout are kosher or acceptable; lobster, shrimp, eels, and catﬁ sh will not be. Observant Jews additionally eat birds that meet sure necessities. But the very best recognized kosher legislation issues land animals. These animals should chew the cud and have cloven hoofs. Pigs don't chew the cud; subsequently, observant Jews don't eat pork—and many different meats as properly.
Observant Jews additionally don't eat blood. This regulation requires particular preparation of meat earlier than cooking. The BIBLE forbids boiling a child in its mom’s milk. The RABBIS prolonged this rule: It is just not correct to eat meat and dairy merchandise in the identical meal. Thus, cheeseburgers and pepperoni pizzas will not be kosher. Observant households typically have two units of kitchen ware—one for meat meals, the opposite for dairy meals. After consuming a meat or dairy dish, observant Jews additionally let an applicable interval—say, six hours—move earlier than consuming meals of the opposite selection.
REGULATIONS CONCERNING OTHER FOODS
Religions have had much less to say about plant food and dairy merchandise, however they haven't ignored them. The followers of Pythagoras have been forbidden to eat beans. Members of the Nation of Islam are supposed to keep away from sure greens that recall the experiences of slavery. Technically, Jains might eat solely dwelling beings which have a single sense. This precept prohibits them from consuming some crops in addition to meat. (Most North Americans restrict senses to animals, however Jains don't.) Traditional HINDUISM distinguishes between two kinds of food, pakka and kacca. Hindus who're most involved concerning the purity of their food regimen eat solely food that's pakka. They keep away from onions and garlic in addition to animal meals. They additionally eat food that's ready with clariﬁ ed butter, referred to as “ghee,” quite than with oils from crops or animals.
Many religions additionally regulate the consumption of alcohol. One of the ﬁ ve precepts of BUDDHISM rejects alcohol altogether. Some Buddhists, nonetheless, ignore this principle, particularly in Japan. JUDAISM permits alcohol sparsely, however ISLAM strictly forbids it. Christian attitudes range. Some Christians drink to extra after they rejoice sure rituals, corresponding to CARNIVAL. Some Protestants, nonetheless, keep away from alcohol altogether. They even rejoice the EUCHARIST with unfermented grape juice. After World War I this Protestant angle, represented by teams just like the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, helped to move a constitutional modification that made alcohol unlawful within the United States. This began the period of Prohibition (1920-33).
OTHER DIETARY LAWS
Many dietary legal guidelines element what meals could also be eaten. But religions additionally inform their followers who might put together, serve, and clear up food, in addition to when and how a lot an individual might eat.
In conventional Hinduism dietary guidelines assist deﬁ ne ritual courses (varnas) and castes (jatis). According to these guidelines, an individual ought to eat solely cooked food that's ready by somebody of equal or larger standing. Similarly, people ought to clear up solely food that has been eaten by somebody of equal or larger standing. Buddhism teaches that MONKS AND NUNS shouldn't eat after midday. MANICHAEISM taught that its elite, known as “the elect,” should eat all of the food that laypersons introduced to them.
WHY REGULATE DIET?
People typically marvel why others observe dietary legal guidelines that they don't. Some people attribute these legal guidelines to medical issues. For instance, some people suppose that observant Jews don't eat pork as a result of pigs carry trichinosis. However, when the Jewish dietary legal guidelines of kashrut have been established, nobody knew that pigs carried trichinosis.
Many fashionable students hint dietary legal guidelines to a special trigger. They say that these legal guidelines assist create group id. For instance, the legal guidelines of kashrut assist distinguish Jews from non-Jews. There is one thing to this declare. During the 20th century people all around the world moved into fashionable, pluralistic cities. When they left their conventional communities behind, a lot of them gave up their conventional dietary practices. But group id explains solely when people observe dietary legal guidelines. It doesn't clarify the actual legal guidelines that they observe.
It is necessary to notice what the religions themselves say about these legal guidelines. Buddhists say that it takes a transparent, crisp thoughts to pursue enlightenment, or understanding. Someone who's intoxicated doesn't have such a thoughts. Therefore, they chorus from alcohol. Jains don't eat meat due to their devotion to the precept of AHIMSA. Many observant Jews say that there's just one good motive for training the dietary legal guidelines. GOD instructed them to accomplish that. Who are human beings, that they need to second-bet God?