International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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Congress Logo 33rd World Vegetarian Congress
Chiang Mai, Thailand, January 4 - 10, 1999
'Vegetarianism is the Way'
an unforgettable visual, cultural and gastronomic experience

Hello! My name is Gabriel Buist and I am attending the Congress. I have been travelling in the USA and Japan during much of the past 3 months and have not been able to write this sooner. I had the good fortune to be born into a vegetarian family, so I am a life vegetarian, vegan for the past 15 years. My wife, Rosemary, and our 2 sons, David and Ian, are also vegetarian/vegan. David will be joining me at the Congress - he will be flying from Japan where he is a graduate student at the University of Tokyo (he speaks and writes Japanese fluently). I became interested in science at an early age and I studied chemistry at University College London.

After a period of research in the USA, I became a lecturer in the Chemistry Department at the University of Surrey, Guildford, England. Now I am retired, and although Guildford is still my home, I spend much time travelling, particularly in the USA and Japan. I also visit a friend in Denmark and in 1997 I went to Australia and New Zealand. My son Ian works in Santa Barbara, California, and Rosemary and I visit him 2 or 3 times a year.

The guiding influence in my life is the teachings of the Order of the Cross, probably the only Christian "Church" (we call ourselves a Fellowship rather than a Church) whose members are required to be vegetarian. Compassion for all life is a central theme of our teachings. Meeting other members of the Order of the Cross as well as anyone interested in vegetarianism and the welfare of animals is very much part of my travels. Another of my interests is the relationship between Science and Religion. I look forward very much to seeing something of Thailand and to meeting you. I will be in Bangkok for the stopover on Jan. 3rd.