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  1. #1
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    Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    So ever since I was a kid my parents required me to not eat meat on Fridays during lent; however fish was acceptable.

    Anyone is free to answer this, but I would like to ask this: why is fish not considered meat, yet chicken is (and all types of foul), pork is, and beef is.

    A fish is living, it bleeds, it has organs, it is a living breathing animal, you need to kill it in order to eat it. Why is it not considered meat?

    I have heard many things, the most interesting of which (and would not surprise me the least) would be that a particular Pope had owned a fish market, and to increase his sales he would allow fish to be eaten during lent (paraphrasing obviously).

    So, why is it not considered meat?
    Witty puns...

  2. #2

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by DevilPup John View Post
    I have heard many things, the most interesting of which (and would not surprise me the least) would be that a particular Pope had owned a fish market, and to increase his sales he would allow fish to be eaten during lent (paraphrasing obviously).
    Doesn't surprise me either. The Church has historically been very strict in ensuring that other people adhere to the rules it sets whether they want to or not, but has had no problem with frequently breaking them itself, proving that it only uses religion as an opiate to subjugate people.

    So, why is it not considered meat?
    It's not a mammal.

    As a generic culinary and butchery term of art, "meat" refers to the muscular flesh of a mammal. This is the definition most commonly applied by governments in meat product regulation and food labeling, and in religious rites and rituals. Edible birds and fish/seafood are not "meat" under this application but are treated separately from mammals. Likewise, amphibians and reptiles, not to mention the "meat" of edible insects, arachnids, and so on.

    Religious rites and rituals regarding food also tend to apply this distinction, classifying the birds of the air and the fish of the sea separately from land-bound mammals. Sea-bound mammals are often treated as fish under religious laws. Following is stated in the Code of Canon Law of the Catholic Church.
    http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Why_is_fis...at_during_lent

    You're in good company though:

    http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=45195

    Quote Originally Posted by JGheen
    Here is something that I don't quite understand - why is fish not considered a meat? Even vegetarians eat fish but fish is an animal, so why isn't its flesh considered meat?
    Quote Originally Posted by SeekerJen
    See, I've always wondered this too. Every biology course that I took indicated that fish are vertebrate animals (as are birds and mammals) and the part of the fish that we eat is the muscle tissue. So if "meat" is defined by the Church (so I've been told) as the muscle tissue of a vertebrate animal, why is fish not "meat"?
    Quote Originally Posted by Loboto-Me
    My 20 yr old has asked me this several times and I've never had a satisfactory answer for him

  3. #3
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    In order to be meat, does something NEED to be considered a mammal? To me it just needs to be something that bleeds and has organs, and must be killed in order to eat.
    Witty puns...

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    A Hindu friend of mine is vegetarian, presumably for religion reasons and we've had some tongue in cheek discussions about it - she knows I'm a staunch atheist. I had some problems with the idea:

    1. Usually, the plant is still alive when being eaten, so that makes it even more cruel than a eating an animal.
    2. She would not eat lab-created meat even though it has not been anywhere near an animal.
    3. And she eats eggs.
    4. But not fish roe.

    Basically, I think the whole point of these 'rules', including the Jewish dietary rules, serve two functions. Firstly, a public, visible declaration of adherence to the law and secondly, the notion of a personal sacrifice.

    So like most religious questions, the answers are probably deeply personal and likely not 'logical'.

  5. #5
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    of a mammal
    Chickens are not mammals either.
    When the power of love becomes stronger than the love of power, there will be peace..........jimi hendrix.

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by SharmaK View Post
    [LIST=1][*]Usually, the plant is still alive when being eaten, so that makes it even more cruel than a eating an animal.
    No, when you eat a plant, it's usually been cooked or something, and is thus dead. If not, it's getting there, having been cut off from its nutrient source. Also, plants don't have feelings or emotions like animals do.

    [*]She would not eat lab-created meat even though it has not been anywhere near an animal.
    I dunno...lab created meat reminds me of spam or mystery meat.

    And she eats eggs. But not fish roe.
    Well, we're all more familiar with eggs; we use them to make omelets and other egg-based dishes, as well as other stuff like cakes. People are more familiar with what eggs are, where they come from, and what they can be used for. Roe, on the other hand, looks weirder; its more alien.

    Basically, I think the whole point of these 'rules', including the Jewish dietary rules, serve two functions. Firstly, a public, visible declaration of adherence to the law and secondly, the notion of a personal sacrifice.
    Hindu dietary "laws" (more like guidelines) are not to create a notion of self-sacrifice, but to promote spiritual growth. Some foods make it harder for us to focus on God, because they promote dullness, laziness, and ignorance, as they are not fresh. These include meat, fish, eggs, garlic, onions, alcohol/drugs, sweets, food with excessive additives, leftovers, etc and are called tamasic foods (tamas = ignorance or darkness).

    Some foods are too hot, pungent, sour or salty, like tacos, fries, pizza, etc. These may cause health problems like heartburn, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and because they can also cause emotional volatility, they interfere with our attaining a calm, peaceful state that helps us focus upon the Lord. Thus, these foods are called rajasic (rajas=passion).

    The foods that we must eat are the ones that promote clarity, of mind, and wellness of being. These foods are called sattvic foods (sat = truth) and include fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, beans, grains, bread, milk, butter, yogurt and other fresh food.

    Not that eating tamasic or rajasic can't be enjoyable; it can. But if we make a habit of eating these foods, then we might consume them to the exclusion of healthy, sattvic food, which will not only keep us from praying and meditating properly, but also damage our health.

  7. #7
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    No, when you eat a plant, it's usually been cooked or something, and is thus dead.
    That came up in the context of a salad or fresh herbs from a plant but I understand the point about feelings and such.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    I dunno...lab created meat reminds me of spam or mystery meat.
    It's definitely a mystery but at the end of the day, it doesn't have feelings or emotions either. Other than being gross, which is fixable, what would be the real objection? And what if one day we made animals with no minds or even in the case of Douglas Adams' Restaurant at the End of the Universe, one that wants to be eaten?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    Roe, on the other hand, looks weirder; its more alien.
    So it's more of a personal than a religious law that's deciding?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    Hindu dietary "laws" (more like guidelines) are not to create a notion of self-sacrifice, but to promote spiritual growth. Some foods make it harder for us to focus on God ...
    That's a pretty interesting summary though I can't believe anyone can say anything negative about garlic! The ideas are much like the ideas of how the Chinese thought about food. My parents would cook certain foods when we have a fever, and other foods in other circumstances with all sorts of theories and mysteries around them. I didn't pay too much attention to the details but the concepts sound similar to what you describe - a folk history of food and how it affects us.

  8. #8

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by SharmaK View Post
    That came up in the context of a salad or fresh herbs from a plant but I understand the point about feelings and such.
    Exactly; we cannot live without eating plants. They must die for us to live. But we can live without eating animals. So many Hindus abstain from meat and eggs for that reason.

    It's definitely a mystery but at the end of the day, it doesn't have feelings or emotions either. Other than being gross, which is fixable, what would be the real objection?
    One thing you have to understand is that for many Hindus, simply looking at meat is disgusting because it bring to mind death, blood, pain, etc. In India, butchers (mostly Muslim) usually have their own place in town where they sell meat; they don't mingle with other street vendors, contrary to open air markets in other areas of the world. In contrast, Indian open air markets have many more vegetable vendors due to the wide variety of vegetables used in cooking. As such, most middle class Hindus never see, touch, taste, or smell meat ever, and this aversion to meat is firmly ingrained in their minds (though, don't get me wrong. There are some very good Indian meat dishes in North India especially), and thus, even artificial lab-made meat is automatically associated with killing.

    And what if one day we made animals with no minds or even in the case of Douglas Adams' Restaurant at the End of the Universe, one that wants to be eaten?
    Well, if we made animals with no minds or ones that wanted to be eaten, I think Hindus would still refuse to eat them. The point of vegetarianism in Hinduism is to do the least harm, or ahimsa. (himsa = harm, ahimsa = no harm). Killing an animal with no mind or one that wanted to be eaten would still be doing harm, sort of like whipping someone who likes being whipped still causes them pain.

    So it's more of a personal than a religious law that's deciding?
    Yes. Jews adhere to kosher, Muslims to halal, where there are clean and unclean animals and foods, these divisions being mandated by God. But because Hindu theology is more about an inner God rather than an external God, Hindu dietary laws are more about facilitating inner peace and health rather than pleasing an external deity.

    That's a pretty interesting summary though I can't believe anyone can say anything negative about garlic! The ideas are much like the ideas of how the Chinese thought about food. My parents would cook certain foods when we have a fever, and other foods in other circumstances with all sorts of theories and mysteries around them. I didn't pay too much attention to the details but the concepts sound similar to what you describe - a folk history of food and how it affects us.
    It's not as folk as you would think. People who meditate actually do find it difficult to do so if they eat meat, drink alcohol, or eat too much spicy food, and find it easier when they adhere to a sattvic diet.

  9. #9
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    I think it might have something to do with fish coming from the sea...
    "The hottest places in Hell are reserved for those, who, in times of great moral crisis, reserve their neutrality."-Dante

    !@#$%^&*()_+Loller65+_()*&^%$#@!

  10. #10
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    It's all made up.

    At one point, the Roman Catholic Church declared the beaver were fish so that they could be eaten during Lent.
    Ezekiel 4:12 (King James Version)
    And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight.

  11. #11
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    Exactly; we cannot live without eating plants. They must die for us to live. But we can live without eating animals. So many Hindus abstain from meat and eggs for that reason.
    But nowadays, one can survive on water and protein / vitamin powders. So there's no need to destroy any life at all because we can generate all the necessary chemicals needed.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    One thing you have to understand is that for many Hindus, simply looking at meat is disgusting because it bring to mind death, blood, pain, etc. I
    I think that's true for most people though we are removed from the process nowadays.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    and thus, even artificial lab-made meat is automatically associated with killing.
    Do meat-flavoured, even artificially flavoured, foods have the same association? It does seem very personal.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    Killing an animal with no mind or one that wanted to be eaten would still be doing harm, sort of like whipping someone who likes being whipped still causes them pain.
    But what if there were no pain sensors and the meat grew back quickly, sort of like skin or hair, would that be OK? There'd be no pain, no physical harm, just shedding of extra meat. That should be fine.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Great Khan View Post
    Yes. Jews adhere to kosher, Muslims to halal, where there are clean and unclean animals and foods, these divisions being mandated by God. But because Hindu theology is more about an inner God rather than an external God, Hindu dietary laws are more about facilitating inner peace and health rather than pleasing an external deity.
    This makes sense. It all does sound personal which means that one can work around it - are there examples of Hindus eating meat and being able to justify it?

  12. #12

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by SharmaK View Post
    But nowadays, one can survive on water and protein / vitamin powders. So there's no need to destroy any life at all because we can generate all the necessary chemicals needed.
    Vitamin pills and water can give us nutrients, but they can't give us calories.

    I think that's true for most people though we are removed from the process nowadays.
    Exactly; We call it beef, or pork instead of "dead cow flesh" or "dead pig meat." In India, when you ask for a butcher to give you beef, you literally say "give me a piece of a dead cow."

    Do meat-flavoured, even artificially flavoured, foods have the same association? It does seem very personal.
    Perhaps. I was raised here in the US so I have less of an aversion to it, but simply smelling meat or fat disgusts some people.

    But what if there were no pain sensors and the meat grew back quickly, sort of like skin or hair, would that be OK? There'd be no pain, no physical harm, just shedding of extra meat. That should be fine.
    It still damages the animal's body. That's harm. Plus, you actually gotta wield a knife and stab a living thing, even if it does grow back and feels no pain, and some people don't have the guts to do that. (Though by this point of technological advances, I'm sure many Hindus would have figured it's "close enough to harmless". It's really a personal thing.)

    This makes sense. It all does sound personal which means that one can work around it - are there examples of Hindus eating meat and being able to justify it?
    Yes. Meat is an excellent source of protein. Many Hindus eat it and say that it's the easiest way for them to get the necessary protein, which makes sense. Again, there are no hard and fast rules, because it's all about your own personal enlightenment, not about appeasing God.

  13. #13
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by DevilPup John View Post
    why is fish not considered meat, yet chicken is (and all types of foul), pork is, and beef is.

    A fish is living, it bleeds, it has organs, it is a living breathing animal, you need to kill it in order to eat it. Why is it not considered meat?

    So, why is it not considered meat?
    I honestly don't know, because eating fish IS eating meat..
    I can tell you that I'm a vegetarian, and I don't eat fish.

    ---------- Post added at 02:48 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:58 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by SharmaK View Post
    we are removed from the process nowadays.
    Yes...many people have no idea how their meat is produced, and don't really know what happens on modern factory farms.

    Below are some reminders of how factory farms produce their "products".
    If your meat is not USDA certified "organic", and you purchased it at a local grocery store, it probably came from a factory farm.
    Be warned, there are some graphic images.

    Please think about these next time you purchase your meat:










    Last edited by Scarlett44; March 11th, 2010 at 11:14 AM.
    "As long as I have a voice, I will speak for those who have none".

  14. #14
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Sorry folks -- but reading all these posts I see nothing but ignorance on the practice of fasting and abstaining. And a lot of re-telling of old catholic-bashing lies.

    The abstaining from meat is a very old Christian tradition going back to the first century and the first monks known as the desert fathers, and the first followers of the Apostles.

    At that time, in that place meat was only eaten very rarely and often was associated with a feast or celebration. The monastics were in constant repentance so they tended not to partake of meat. Traditionally Christians have abstained from meat almost every Wed. and Friday of the year.



    Meat is considered anything with fur or feathers -- usually any creature that had a mother that cared for it. Fish are not usually cared for and so therefore are considered "fair game". Also fish in those days -- unless you lived by the Sea -- were usually dried and not exactly the sort of thing one would associate with a "good time".

    This monastic tradition of not eating meat ever continues today among Orthodox monastics who do not eat meat. Not so much so among Roman Catholic monastics.

    http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Roman-Ca...ish-on-Fridays

    Although there are a lot of adherants to the belief that a Roman Catholic Pope mandated fish on Fridays -- such claimants are usually few on details like which Pope and what year. It might be a bit of anti-catholic smearing designed to explain why Roman Catholics in the US tended to eat Fish on Fridays rather than meat like their protestant neighbors.
    There were cases where local authorities mandated "fish days" in conjunction with religious fast days -- but these were local laws enforced by the civil authority for local reasons. For example England had two mandated "fish days" a week -- but that was after Henry VIII when the Church of England was in favor.
    http://searchworks.stanford.edu/view/1242912

    Today observant Orthodox Christians abstain from meat on most Wednesdays and Fridays and all throughout Great Lent, Advent Lent and other Lenten periods.

    In Roman Catholicism "meatless Fridays" during Great Lent are still somewhat observed and are the cause for all the restaurant chains advertising specials during this period.


    SUMMARY --

    There is no requirement for Roman Catholics to eat fish on Fridays. Fish is for many a convenient substitute for meat protein.

    There is an ancient tradition of fasting and not eating meat on Wednesdays and Fridays going back to the early Christians that is still practiced among Orthodox Christians -- and not practiced much among Roman Catholics.

    ---------- Post added at 09:49 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:33 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by MrFungus420 View Post
    It's all made up.

    At one point, the Roman Catholic Church declared the beaver were fish so that they could be eaten during Lent.
    CHALLENGE!!!

    Either support or retract!.

    Sorry but this is just another piece of catholic-bashing propoganda.
    Last edited by Spartacus; March 12th, 2010 at 07:06 AM.
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Originally Posted by JGheen
    Here is something that I don't quite understand - why is fish not considered a meat? Even vegetarians eat fish but fish is an animal, so why isn't its flesh considered meat?
    For the record, that is not a vegetarian. A person who eats only fish and not other meat is called a pescetarian. They are NOT vegetarian.

    I subscribe to most Hindu beliefs and honestly if I could find some place around me that would welcome me, I'd become Hindu. I think a lot of people miss the concept of ahimsa. To do no harm is to also do no harm to the self. So lab meat would do harm to the self because it is unnatural. One of the reasons people subscribe to vegetarianism is to keep the "energy body" clean. Now, I'm not debating it. I'm just telling you one of the ideas behind it. To eat lab generated food, or meat, would distort the energy body.

    Anywho, my husband is Catholic and since I became a vegetarian, I stopped making him fish on Fridays and he has to eat the vegetarian meal I eat.

    To be completely honest, I came to believe that Jesus could not possibly be THE Savior of the world BECAUSE he ate meat. OR, he didn't eat meat and I'm just naive about what's in the Bible. Because to be the big J, you'd have to have a pure energy body and you couldn't achieve that eating dead, rotting flesh.
    Souls of the animal kingdom: eagle, fox, bottle-nose dolphin, octopus, house cat. Okay, let's jump this jump. -- Rod Kimble

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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by Spart
    "Pure energy body"??? Where did that idea come from?
    What's up with the ******** neg repping around here? Spart, I wasn't debating it. I even stated, "I'm not debating it". I was just mentioning one belief system. MENTIONING it, not DEBATING it. The thread title said, "Not so serious..." So don't take it so damn serious. God!
    Souls of the animal kingdom: eagle, fox, bottle-nose dolphin, octopus, house cat. Okay, let's jump this jump. -- Rod Kimble

  17. #17
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    I think it has to do with warm blooded vs cold blooded.
    Have you ever noticed that many traditional rules of religions are later scientifically proven to be good for you psychologically and physically? I find that interesting

    ---------- Post added at 10:40 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:35 AM ----------

    To be completely honest, I came to believe that Jesus could not possibly be THE Savior of the world BECAUSE he ate meat. OR, he didn't eat meat and I'm just naive about what's in the Bible. Because to be the big J, you'd have to have a pure energy body and you couldn't achieve that eating dead, rotting flesh.[/QUOTE]

    When religious zealots challenged Jesus about the purity of the food he ate, he replied by saying he felt it was more important to worry about the purity of what comes out of your mouth than the purity of what goes into it.

  18. #18
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    Re: Fish not meat? (not so serious)

    Quote Originally Posted by littlestrides View Post
    When religious zealots challenged Jesus about the purity of the food he ate, he replied by saying he felt it was more important to worry about the purity of what comes out of your mouth than the purity of what goes into it.
    LOL...that's a politician if ever I've heard of one. Way to avoid the issue, Jesus. lol.
    Souls of the animal kingdom: eagle, fox, bottle-nose dolphin, octopus, house cat. Okay, let's jump this jump. -- Rod Kimble

 

 

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