You may have noticed that my blog (and instagram etc.) is more and more focused on ethicality and ethical living. But even the rising trend of veganism and this type of lifestyle, there are still some misconceptions about what an ethical lifestyle is…
It’s different for everyone
Keep in mind that there are as many definitions as there is people practicing this way of living.
Wikipedia: Ethical living is the philosophy of making decisions for daily life which take into account ethics and moral values, particularly with regard to consumerism, sustainability, environmentalism, wildlife and animal welfare. At present it is largely a personal choice, and not an organized social movement.
No matter if the question is about veganism, minimalism or anything else, you make your own version of it. Many don’t like the use of “ism” behind those words and I personally know people who hate everything “ism” involved. I think that people are just stuck with some negative words like nazism and fascism and therefore think that everything kinda sounding like those words are the same. Sometimes it’s helpful to have labels and boxes where you can scoop out the information that you need on a topic and then move on. It’s also clarifying for other people to know what you are all about. But you don’t have to tattoo it onto your forehead…if you don’t want to.
Lifesquared.org: So, what does ‘ethical living’ really mean? This term is often used to simply mean ‘living your own life in a way that is considerate towards the wider world beyond you’. In this context, the wider world includes other people, animals and the environment.
Things and ideas that bring us and to our surroundings joy, happiness and peace are good whether or not there is an “ism” behind it. This is not a cult. This is not an exclusive gang. This is just the way I want to live in order to bring peace into my life and into the world I live in.
It’s a journey
Yes, that’s correct. I’m on a journey and I don’t need to require myself to be 100% ready at this or at anything. Nobody is perfect nor will ever be.
For example there is certain percent of nuclear power heating up my stove at my parents house where I live at the moment. Can I make a difference about what type of electricity comes to our house? Unfortunately not. I could just start to eat a raw vegan diet that doesn’t require a heating process but in Finland and for me as an unemployed, that is not sustainable. So I can go raw or wait until I move into my own house and have the chance to really make a decision about my own electricity.
Sadly some people have a problem with making your life sustainable for you. “So you allow nuclear power but cry for the dairy cows. How can you say that you’re ethical when you are just choosing what type of ethical things you do? That’s hypocrisy and labeling yourself as a better person than everyone else. You are just being passive!”
Not everyone want or can go to live on deserted island with no electricity.
Not everyone can go and save all the starving African children.
And fiy, living a more ethical life is not passive.
It’s extremely active. The effort of every time I go outside, check my instagram or even turn on TV (which I don’t do very often). Every time I need to be conscious about who is trying to sell me, what and in what cause? What ideas these mainly huge corporations are trying to plant in my head? That I need something ’cause I’m not good enough? That it’s okay the slaughter innocent beings for my appetite? Because bacon tho’ ??
Being conscious and living a more ethical lifestyle is the least we can do, living in a first-world country where we vote with our money for the reality we want to see.
But it’s also realizing that you don’t have and cannot save everyone at once. Many people have the dissolution that you would have to do everything once in order to live more ethically. And as a result, people don’t even start ’cause they think it’s too hard. Guys, this is not true. Allow yourself to go on to this journey. If you are new to this whole idea, don’t freak out that the world is a mess and you cannot change anything. We’ve all been there and it feels horrible. But the shame and quilt from living in a privileged world is still not helping anyone… Not you, not the fast fashion slaves and not the dairy cows. Open your eyes and take action.
At the moment in life I can be charge at least these things: what I eat, what I wear and what I buy. So here is my short definition of what an ethical lifestyle holds for me:
- A plant-based diet is the obvious choice: nothing is more sustainable in the world. If you want proof go and watch Cowspicary on Netflix! Harming other beings and this planet is a very un-ethical way of living. Being a vegan is really a no-brainer.
- Not buying from fast fashion brands: the fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. We always want the newest version of everything and don’t think about the origin of the garment. In my other blogpost I shared some handy questions whether or not you should buy a certain item, so if you are having problem with impulse shopping, I highly suggest you read that. But hail thrift shops, vintage and trashion!
- Always keeping in mind the origin: Every item we purchase has a story. That story can be sad and scary or relatively okay. Making a habit of buying fair trade, organic and local when ever I can is a way of consuming I want to continue.
- Learning all the time: It’s not about buying the latest fair trade coffee or just being “vegan” for the sake that it’s popular atm. This is about learning continuously about new ways of doing something ethically. Keeping your mind open for new ideas and exposures ’cause nothing is like it seems. Living ethically is more about the mindset not the shopping list.
Now it’s up to you
I have laid out my thoughts on what an ethical lifestyle holds for me. A way of living that bring peace and joy for me and for others. Now it’s up to you to define it to yourself. Some things that I hold valuable may not be so relevant in your life. But I encourage you to ask yourself about your values: what type of world do you want to live in? How can you make an impact to really make this world a better place?
Thank you for reading and of course if you have any comments please leave them down below. I would love to hear your thoughts!
You are awesome!
Take Care <3
If you want further reading / watching :