International Vegetarian Union (IVU)
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The Vegetarian World Forum
No. 3 Vol. IX - Autumn 1955 pp.53-55:


FROM the Chair, Mrs. Gasque said that when considering what womanhood has done for the vegetarian movement it should be remembered that “as woman thinks, humanity unfolds,” and “women have come into their own through the work of women during the last fifty years.”

As mothers thmk to day so will their influence be seen in their progeny. If we have wars or negativity it will be because mothers did not think positively.

If parents become more understanding the children will unfold in a more constructive way and their lives will improve. This can be done!

It is the responsibility of parents, and particularly of mothers, to know the laws of life and the unseen forces of thought. The vibrations of the individual mould the pattern for those unborn. Mothers must not take on the vibrations of massacred animals through flesh foods. They must be taught that their thoughts can attract more beautiful children and that women have ten times more power in this direction than any father, however enlightened!

Let the mothers and all women hold the thought of peace - for governments only reflect the thoughts of the people.

As the mother thinks, so will be the quality of the child - the home should be a temple where the woman is queen.

A reading was made from Richard St. Barbe Baker’s recent book on the Kikuyu to whom a message was sent as from the I.V.U. Congress.

Representatives from the following countries were then called upon to make brief speeches: Belgium (Mrs. Boesnuch), Canada (Miss R. Payle), Denmark (Miss E. Jorgensen), England (Mrs. E. Shrigley, Mrs. Isabel James and Mrs. F Henderson), France (Mrs Olga Kahler), Finland (Miss Nieminen and Mrs.Eva Schrowe), Germany (Mrs Tellgman, Miss Sulkowsky and Mrs. Ecker-Lauer), Holland (Mrs Sypkens), Israel (Mrs. Gila Guri), Italy (Miss Emma Thomas), Norway and Sweden (Mrs. Svennedal and Miss Margit Holst), Austria (Mrs. Fliess), Spain - , Russia (Miss Birkoff), Switzerland (Miss Anne Martin).

Throughout, the importance of the work of women in the home was stressed, particularly the responsibility they had in maintaining the health of the family unit. Mrs. Isabel James also indicated a special responsibilty in the wider field of catering and the necessity to understand simple dietetics, food values and well balanced meals. “Having practised at home, why should we not go out and teach others?” she asked. “The Education authorities in Britain are sympathetic, electricity and gas showroom lecture theatres are frequently available free for cookery demonstarions, and women have opportunities for ttalks on vegetarianism in Guilds and in their own homes where they can give simple instruction to those interested. They also had tremendous opportunities to reach the public by starting restaurants and guest houses.” Ms. James, who is the proprietor of a well-known vegetarian guest house in the Lake District, reported that 40 per cent to 60 per cent of the visitors were not vegetarians.

Mrs. Fay Henderson said that women in orthodox homes accepted anything the shops had to sell but the vegetarian housewife had learned to be selective and subjected all food products to a sharp scrutiny to see that they had been produced without injurious chemicals.

Frau Ecker-Lauer (Member of the I.V.U. Executive Committee) said

“A woman is closely related to the world around her as much through family as through professional activity. At present, her interest in external events is keener than ever before in history. In the past half century, her mental ability has developed radically, while she retains a youthful vitality and appearance. A woman no longer submits to matronly shelving on reaching fifty. Quickened interest, and participation, in public affairs is the. natural result of this evolution and its furtherance will lead to equilibrium and harmony in human government.

The summit of feminine achievement will always be expressed through womanly attributes and never through vain imitation of masculine qualities. Expression of the truly feminine nature must be strengthened and inspired by examples out of the past, mothers of eminent children and the women pioneers in science and higher education, whose endeavour bears fruit
in the present emancipation.

Man’s position is not coveted. Woman’s claim is equality of rights in the employment of her unfettered powers in co-operation with man’s, that the application, of their balanced effort may eradicate the very thought of strife or carnage and the lust for domination. Balance between the sexes generates constructive morality in the governing body.

Women must enter every branch of public service. Women must have numerical equality in the Council of the United Nations Orgainisation and this is a point to be attained when the renewed 1955 Charter is drawn up. They must become versed in all matters rerated to education, infant and adult welfare and care of old people. Feminine sensibility and intuition is apt in the solution of the human problems involved by such organisations and can overcome them more swiftly than specifically masculine qualities.

Emphasis is to be laid upon a woman's responsibility for the health alike of family and community. All women’s associations, great and small, must campaign for the distribution of healthy foodstuffs, be they groceries from a factory, cereals from a warehouse or the garden produce on the daily market. Use of harmful chemicals in the processing and preservation of food and pollution of the soil by wrong fertilising can no longer be tolerated. In many countries, especially in Germany, gardens, fields and orchards are still poisoned with manure derived from human and cattle excrement. Animals and men must be liberated from resultant epidemics and conditions of chronic disease. Let the demand be created for wholesome, unbleached, undyed, uncontaminated food. The more wholemeal cereals, brown sugar, pure honey and composted vegetables appear on the market, the more rapidly will vegetarian habits spread and bless mankind.

More infant schools are required. Ever increasing intellectual demands in all grades of the curriculum must be balanced by physical exercises. Five minutes of rhythmic breathing and gymnastics preceding each lesson suffice to keep children bright and attentive through the period. Not only will rhythmic movement improve carriage and neutralise the evils of prolonged desk work: it will also further physical and mental development, leading to discovery of innate gifts and talents. Once adopted in the educational system, the graduating student will find himself thereby prepared to face life in full possession of the awakened powers resident in his being. May mothers and physicians take the matter to heart.

Everywhere, the world’s products call for equitable distribution. Necessary food, clothing and shelter must be available to each individual and their supply considered a basic pre-occupation of statesmanship. Just repartition promotes peaceful aims and mutual respect between nations, sole guarantees of the human right to free choice and free will.

Mothers shape the destiny of coming generations and determine mankind’s future. An harmonious community, wherein life’s latent possibilities may unfold, is worth building. Women and men are to share rights and duties equally. Mothers must be empowered to create conditions suited to the happiness, well-being, health and freedom of their children.

Eugenical laws, including those of prenatal education, conscious conception by both parents and determination of sex must become generally known all over the world. True culture and deference for racial characteristics arise therefrom, leading humanity to a phase of universal progress. All branches of science will then be applied to constructive ends, to the exclusion of destructive thoughts.

Mankind is now faced by two alternatives: the release of chaos leaving the world a desert or, in its stead, the sole pursuit of peace and order until the whole earth’s surface blooms again as a Garden of Eden.”

Mrs. Stephania Sypkens (Holland) said:

“In general it is not known that the male and the female principles in nature exist in order to co-operate and thus establish manifestation, progress, and finally perfection. The atom already shows these two principles as centripetal and centrifugal powers: the nucleus consisting of neutrons and protons, which emanate the power, fixing the circling electrons in their orbs. The electrons in their centrifugal tendency, represent the male principle. Therefore, as in the atomic world, also on earth and in the United Nations, women have to have an influence in the affairs and interests of humanity as powerful as that of the male individual (50-50).

In the world only the male opinion about life is heard; only man makes the laws for individuals, family and society. Time has come that the naturally thinking wise woman is going to use her innate power. It is woman who is in closest daily relation to nutrition, agriculture and horticulture, even to economy.

The more vegetarian women assert themselves in the diverse public bodies - and the vegetarian man should help and sustain her in the first place - all the earlier vegetarianism may show its cultural influence all over the world.

Woman is striving to a higher level in life, for the male, his side of life seems more important. That is because woman, more than living from out her inner being and follows the voice rising in her heart, whilst man thinks his mere intellect is towering above it all! A perfect mingling and mixing of the female and the male principles of necessity causes a mutual complementation in thinking and feeling of each party, so much so that also their words and deeds will show greater harmony and perfection which then may equal up to the spirit of the times, which demand co-operation."


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