A Lesson in Love and Kindness and a Cookie Recipe

The Pillars of Health by John Pierre

The Pillars of Health by John Pierre

This weekend we attended a vegan Thanksgiving Potluck in Boulder that had over 200 people in attendance. It was

an amazing event with delicious food. It was so nice to be around those like-minded people. As an added bonus, John Pierre, a well-known vegan fitness and nutrition consultant who just moved to Boulder was the guest speaker.  John is possibly best known for being Ellen DeGeneres’ personal trainer. He gave a really eye-opening and inspirational talk about some of the concepts in his new book, “The Pillars of Health, Your Foundations for Lifelong Wellness.” We were lucky enough to get a signed copy.


John Pierre with Ellen DeGeneres

The part that resonated most for me was when he spoke about how not only can food cause disease, but anger, rage, hostility, jealousy and other negative emotions cause dis-ease, and they attack our cells in much the same way that unhealthy foods (i.e. animal products, processed foods, and dairy products) attack our cells.


He then talked about how if someone has advanced heart disease it would be irresponsible to feed them a meal full of saturated fats and cholesterol. In the same manner, if someone approaches us with anger it is similarly irresponsible to respond to them with anger, rage and hostility as it feeds their dis-ease. JP said he never gets upset or takes it personally when someone gets mad at him. He just realizes it is coming from whatever difficult life situation they have had and what they really need is to be given love, kindness and understanding.

Bam! That hit me hard! This is a lesson I’ve heard many times during my life but something about the heart disease analogy really drove it home for me. Of course, the universe promptly provided me a GREAT opportunity that night to practice this lesson. Doesn’t it always work that way? When the student is ready, the teacher appears. I’m still working really hard not to feed my own dis-ease by not responding to the situation in anger.

I’ve been “trying” to meditate every day for the past few weeks and it hasn’t really happened. This was the motivation I needed to get started in earnest. I have now meditated twice in the past 15 hours. And it really helped to calm me down and think of the other person from a loving, ok, at least not in a hateful way. I still have some work to do on this.

What tactics or techniques do you have for cooling down or not getting amped up when someone directs anger, rage or hostility at you? Do you take it personally or are you able to let it go?

In lighter news, one of the dishes we brought was the Cranberry, Apricot and Pecan Wild Rice Pilaf from Oh She Glows that we featured in our last post on Plant-Based Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipes. I have to tell you it was phenomenal!

One of the other dishes we brought were the Pumpkin Cookies with Oats, Nuts and Chocolate from Healthy. Happy. Life. I wasn’t able to bring any home because they were polished off by all my new friends.

I’m still working on the next few Thanksgiving posts on side dishes and desserts but in the meantime here is the recipe link to these yummy pumpkin cookies. Please be sure to visit the Happy. Healthy. Life blog for a million more great recipes!

Vegan Pumpkin Cookies

Vegan Pumpkin Cookies

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