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Aug 27
2023
9AM-1PM PST
9:00 am - 9:10 am
Welcome: introduce hosts and sponsors
10 mins
The Interconnectedness of Human, Animal, and Planetary Health
Presiding: Jina Shah
9:10 am - 9:30 am
The Paradox of Dairy Consumption in the Jain Community
20 mins
One of the principal teachings in Jainism is non-violence and reducing harm to living beings as much as possible. The paradox and challenge that the Jain community faces is connecting the consumption of dairy products to the violence toward animals, as well as concerns with human and planetary health.  Asha will address the questions: WHY do we consume dairy products? WHAT are the benefits of giving up dairy products? HOW to change (It's not as hard as we think!)
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9:30 am - 9:50 am
Animal Agriculture and the Global Ecological Impact: Scientific Truths, Willful Ignorance, and Heinous Lies that We All Need to Know
20 mins
Dr. Tushar Mehta will conduct a concise overview of key facts and mechanisms by which animal agriculture impacts biodiversity, land use and deforestation, ocean health, water use, climate change, global food security, and food justice.  Appropriate plant based diets have massive benefits in comparison to diets that include animal products, but there are complexities.  We will review topics in which the plant based and vegan movement must understand key areas which are often ignored and need serious improvement in order to optimize benefits and prevent other forms of damage.  Also, we will briefly comment on the increasing misinformation and confusion generated by the animal agriculture industry.
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9:50 am - 10:10 am
A Holistic Approach to Ahimsa and Health
20 mins
Dr. Shah will discuss the ways we can keep ourselves, other beings, and the planet healthy using an approach based on ahimsa and prevention. The Jain wisdom of Parasparopagraha Jivanam, translated as all living beings are interdependent, gives cultural and ethical meaning to a more limited scientific approach called One Health, in which various professional disciplines work together to address threats to the health of animals, humans, and the planet. The Jain Declaration on the Climate Crisis suggests what we can do as individuals, community members, and citizens. We'll also discuss the practical aspects of changing our tastes and behaviors and for those times when we must rely on supplements, drugs, and modern medicine, how we can make the most beneficial choices.
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10:10 am - 10:40 am
Questions & Answers
30 mins
Keynote Speaker
10:45 am - 11:35 am
Facets of Veganism in Jainism
50 mins
Veganism has become a popular movement encouraging justice for animals over the past several decades. But advocating for the well-being of animals is not a novel concept. Its roots are in fact deep-seated in ahimsa, the most important tenet of the ancient tradition of Jainism. As Ruchika will show in this talk, Jainism’s teachings, whether with regard to karma theory, particular foods proscribed for aspirants, or the tradition’s 5 ethical tenets, all lead to and support the path of living a vegan life. 
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A Vision of the Future: Advancing Ahimsa in Practice
11:40 am - 11:55 am
Meet Arihanta Institute, learn about Ahimsa
15 mins
Arihanta Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization whose mission is to democratize Jain Studies worldwide. The organization’s online platform offers self-study and live courses in Jain Studies and allied fields of inquiry including animal advocacy and biodiversity, climate change and environment, social justice, professional ethics, as well as yoga, self-care, and spirituality. Arihanta Institute also offers an MA- Engaged Jain Studies program covering all of these topics in collaboration with our partner Claremont School of Theology.
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11:55 am - 12:10 pm
Meet the Jain Vegan Initiative
15 mins
The Jain Vegan Initiative (JVI) is a global collective of like-minded Jains with the mission to push the needle towards veganism in the global Jain community. Recognizing the profound interconnection between our food systems, the exploitation of animals, the health of our planet, and our own well-being, JVI believes the collective shift towards veganism represents an unparalleled milestone in contemporary Jain culture.
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12:10 pm - 12:25 pm
Meet Compassionate Living
15 mins
Compassionate Living is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization working to end farmed animal suffering and encourage vegan living. Through educational activities, community building, compassionate and inclusive outreach, always focusing on the animals, Compassionate Living hopes to be part of achieving a just, compassionate, non-violent, vegan world. The organization’s Ahimsa Living Project was created to reveal how ethical veganism is a modern extension and expression of ahimsa (non-violence) and the dharma traditions.
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12:25 pm - 1:00 pm
Questions & Answers
35 mins