Abel Counseling Services, LLC: Spirituality-Psychology "The Beginning of All Sanity is Spirituality" Dr. Steven Dwight Abel,M.Div., M.S., Ph.D.
Abel Counseling Services, LLC:   Spirituality-Psychology "The Beginning of All Sanity is Spirituality"                                                    Dr. Steven Dwight Abel,M.Div., M.S., Ph.D.

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"The Beginning of All Sanity is Spirituality."


Dr. Abel believes that without the spiritual experience as an intregal part of your life, it is virtually impossible to know what LIFE truely is. More than 2/3rd of the human population on earth believe in some form of spirituality. And though spirituality is not a popularity contest, its adherents are certainly witnesses to the reality that something exists within all human beings that begs for experession in some form which we universally call spirituality. What, then, is spirituality?


Spirituality is the personal awareness of an unspeakable Presence whose transcendental nature prohibits individual possession of its inarticulate Being, yet whose omniscience encourages all who will to approach it, with reverence and awe, to
find, in one’s own unique way, Peace, Understanding, & Direction in a world filled with changes and surprises. Contiguously, spirituality is that existential, cosmic reality that bridges the chasm between the most sacred and the mere profane. It is at once, a struggle for soul-fullfilment attainment, while, concurrently with the events and circumstances of life, it is phenomenologically appearing as the thing itself. And juxtaposed to the transitions of life, spirituality beckons faith toward the possibilities of a vailed and gentile spirit reaching out in hope and anticipation of giving succor and sustenance from its inimitable womb of Present-Being, which mothers knowing-truth, to the yearning Soul longing to make its journey home..

The Spirituality-based counseling process, therefore, is a subjunctive  experience between the client and his or her practitioner... the DEEP speaking to the DEEP, two Souls spiritually speaking, speaking in the midst of the Dark waters of coginitive dissonance and spiritual chaos. And these speaking spirits, now in relationship, ultimately find healing in Being There, a ministry of Presence, a "there-for-ME.ness" when I was most in need of help.



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Yahwist Veganism & the Vegan Body


Yahwist Veganism and the Vegan Body

By Dr. Steven Dwight Abel, B.A., M.Div., M.S., Ph.D.


Vegan vegetarianism is gaining popularity at a phenomenal rate in recent years, although it has been around at least since 1944. This was the year that The Vegan Society was organized in London, England. Its founders coined the term Vegan from the word VEGetariAN[1].  The fundamental intention of the Vegan Society was, and continues to be, the promotion of a vegan-vegetarian diet and lifestyle. The Vegan Diet is a non-dairy vegetarianism. That is, the Vegan diet is a form of vegetarianism that excludes the consumption of all dairy foods such as milk, butter, cheese, eggs, and all produce derivatives of dairy foods.  Also excluded are any and all animal by-products such as honey produced by bees, animal based gelatin, etc. Contiguous to the vegan society’s promotion of the vegan diet is their promotion of the vegan lifestyle.


   The vegan lifestyle is a behavioral culture that advocates the non-exploitation of all animal life. In this regard, the breeding of animals as livestock for profit and human consumption, inclusive of cows, pigs, chickens, goats, sheep, (in some places on the earth horses[2], dogs[3] and cats[4], rats[5], frogs[6], and insects[7] are kept for profit and human consumption) rabbits, farmed-fish and all other forms of fishery, and birds, is considered exploitative of these animals compelling the vegan ethic to advocate for animal rights and protection. An obbligato vegan lifestyle behavior is to be an advocator for environmental conservation and protection.  These foundational behaviors, then, were the backdrop for the rise and growth of the Vegan Society.


This perspective of the early Vegan movement raises the question of whether or not Veganism is a response to the need for animal care and environmental protection. If so, then one becomes a vegan because he or she wants to protect the environment and save the animals from cruelty and exploitation. These, of course, are laudable motivations for a sensible and rational preoccupation with the aforementioned concernments. What seems peculiar is the explicit assumption that animals, and the environment, are of central value. The human body, it seems, must be sacrificed for the good of the former and latter causes. Moreover, there is no spirituality-centric ethic to traditional Veganism as defined by the 1944 Vegan Society’s Articles of Association[8]. Veganism, according to the original founding organization of 1944, was and still is a philosophy and way of life “which seeks to exclude – as far as is possible and practicable – all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, it promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment.

In dietary terms, it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.[9]” And although it may not be quite clearly explained by the society’s articles just precisely how the use of animal-free alternatives benefit animals and the environment, it is explicitly and implicitly explained to be of nutritional value to the human body. This begs the question, why, then, is not the Human body the central thesis of veganism with care of animals and the environment its obbligati? As it presently stands, it seems as if eating a vegan diet is the port of entry to animal rights activism and environmental protectionism, which leaves the vegan diet as the adlibitum to these admirable activist movements. However, Biblical spirituality has always been at the fore of veganism (at least since 4004 BC), with the Human Body as the core focus of interest. For, in the very beginning of the Bible (Genesis 1:27; 2:4-9), the Yahwist (YHWH) writer of that scripture makes the unmistakable point that from the beginning of human existence, the human body was such an important creation of God, that He explicitly instructs His human creations (Man & Woman) on how to properly care for the divinely created HUMAN BODY: “See, I give you every seed-bearing plant all over the earth and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit on it to be your food; and to all the animals of the land, all the birds of the air, and all the living creatures that crawl on the ground, I give all the green plants for food. Gen 1: 29. And Gen. 2: 16, “The Lord God gave man this order: ‘You are free to eat from any of the trees of the garden except the tree of knowledge of good and bad. From that tree you shall not eat; the moment you eat from it you are surely doomed to die.’ “ NAB.

The Human body, from the biblical spirituality, is holy because it is the reflection of God, the anthropomorphic creator of the cosmos. And the human body is understood to the reflected image and likeness of the anthropomorphic creator-God. Thus, the body-centric cosmology of the bible informs us that the only law from the beginning given to humans by God was to eat vegan and to avoid eating what is forbidden. The biblical knowledge of eating vegan for the life of the body could be interpreted, without much of a stretch of the imagination, to be the knowledge of GOOD. And since the only thing left to eat after the vegan food would be the animals of the land, all the birds of the air, and all the living creatures that crawl on the ground. Noticeably, these animals were given green plants for food, and not each other. It could be assumed that since the knowledge of good has to do with eating vegan food, the knowledge of BAD may be the knowledge of the eating the animals as a food source. Eating animals give us the knowledge of GOOD (vegan food) and of BAD (the forbidden consumption of the animals. By any stretch of the imagination, it is the act of eating something that gives us the KNOWLEDGE of GOOD and BAD. Once we start eating the bad, we start to die. Of course, this interpretation of the Knowledge of Good and Bad is subject to scrutiny, and rightfully so. What can not be denied , however, is that the act of eating is presented to us in the bible as the means toward Life  (or eternal Life ) or dying for the human body.     How do we eat, then, to live the GOOD LIFE? The vegan diet portends a life of dying for those who consume the animals as a dietary source for the nourishment and strengthening of our bodies.




[1] Watson, Donald. The Vegan News. Quarterly Magazine of The Non-Dairy Vegetarians.  No. 1.  24 November 1944.

[2] The Huffington Post, Huff Post Business. “9 Countries That Actually Love Horsemeat.” Posted 02.17.2013. TheHuffingtonPost.com Inc.

[4] Clifton, Merritt; Bartlett, Kim (September 2003). “How Many Dogs and Cats Are Eaten in Asia?” AnimalPeopleNews.org. Animal People, Inc. Retrieved  14 December  2013.

[5] Nawaguna, Elvina  (10 March 2005). “Rats for Dinner, a Delicacy to Some, a Taboo to Many.” NewVision, Uganda’s Leading Daily. Co. ug.  www.newvision.co.ug. Retrieved 28.12.2013.

[7] Cassimally, Khalil A.  “Why Should We Eat Insects? It’s the Future of Food. Scitable by natureeducation. Blog.  http://www.nature.com/scitable/blog/labcoat-life/why_should_we_eat_insects. (June 6, 2013).

[9] The Companies Acts (1948 – 2006) article 3.


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