Living a vegan lifestyle can be tough sometimes. With 98% of the country eating, wearing and/or exploiting animals, sometimes it can feel very lonely. Burnout is common and something we all should be aware of. If you’re like me, most of the books you read have to do with nutrition or animal rights. It’s time to nourish your soul and choose a book that will recharge you.
Feeding the Hungry Ghost: Life, Faith and What to Eat for Dinner, by Ellen Kanner
This book will draw you in with its storytelling style and tempting recipes at the end of each chapter. Ellen Kanner makes her readers feel as if you’re spending a long weekend together while she weaves tales about her grandmother, her life and her views on veganism all the time cooking up warm, nourishing food from various cultures. Your soul and your body get fed at the same time as wholesome recipes are interspersed throughout the book.
Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works–A True Story, by Dan Harris
Technically not a vegan book, Dan Harris’ story is one that will teach you balance. Dan hit the lowest part of his life right before having a full-on panic attack on national television. This event set him off on a journey searching for the answer on how to reduce stress in his life and still be productive. He found the solution through meditation and believe me when I say, if Type A Dan Harris can meditate, anyone can. You’ll love this story and Harris kindly provides lots of links to resources at the end of his book.
Beg, by Rory Freedman
Have you ever read a book you wish wouldn’t end? That is how you will feel when you read Beg, beautifully written by the co-author of Skinny Bitch. Rory Freedman’s love for animals shone all through her writing and you will love seeing how she makes the connection between veganism and her own spirituality. Rory Freedman writes, “So I’m speaking to you honestly and earnestly and trying to address the highest common denominator – the divine seed in your heart. The part of you that maybe lies dormant, but is stirred by truth and beauty and the chance for elevated spirit. The part of you that might not have known existed but is quickening now with an ancient remembrance. The true you.”
Where the Blind Horse Sings, by Kathy Stevens
Kathy Stevens is the founder and president of Catskill Animal Sanctuary in Saugerties, New York. Many people have heard of Catskill Animal Sanctuary but reading Kathy’s book will open up many more perspectives about the work they do there and the impact they’re having on the animals in their care. In this book, Stevens introduces you to the animals at CAS as you learn about their distinct personalities through funny, inspiring and sometimes sad stories. You can’t help but be uplifted by Kathy Stevens’ words to new sanctuary residents, “We’re so happy you’re here. And you know what? You will never, ever be unhappy again. Only love from now on, for the rest of your lives.”
Vegan Freak: Being Vegan in a Non-Vegan World, by Bob and Jenna Torres
This last book is not a touchy-feely soul nourishing book. It is a book that will tell you to pull yourself up by your bootstraps, put on your best Kale Yeah! t-shirt and scream, “I’m a vegan!” through the nearest megaphone. Unabashedly direct, the authors assures their readers that there is nothing wrong with being a vegan freak and we should, “embrace this freedom, be at home with it and fully own it, not only for your own sanity, but also for the efficacy of building a vegan social movement as a whole.” Let your freak flag fly, my brothers and sisters! This book will give you much needed validation and strength to fight the good fight.
During those times when you’re struggling for the balance between living in the real world and being an advocate for the animals, pick up one of these books to lift your spirits and be reminded that there’s a whole lot of compassion in the world and you’re a part of it.
Christine Day is a Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Educator (VLCE) living in Vestal, New York with her vegan husband, teenaged daughter, a retired racing greyhound and two cats. She is world traveler as well as a freelance writer and owner of A New Day Vegan Lifestyle Coaching. Check out her website at www.anewdayvegan.com