Diet For Transcendence

by Steven Rosen

Exposing the truth about vegetarianism in the world religions — the further we go back in religious history, the more respect we find for life in all its forms. Rosen shows that one of the original intents of the world’s major religious scriptures was to encourage a meatless diet.





Reviewed by: Tom Regan
Mr. Rosen’s insightful book could not arrive at a better time. We are just now beginning to see the first stirrings of serious religious concern about the rights of animals here in America. His book will help insure that the religious community is fully aroused from its dogmatic slumber.…If animals could talk, they would thank Steven Rosen.
—Tom Regan, Associate Professor of Philosophy
North Carolina State University Author, The Case for Animal Rights
Reviewed by: Peter Singer
I hope that all those who eat animals and yet consider themselves to be living religious lives will read this book, and that it will lead them to see that the exploitation of animals is incompatible with any religion which professes compassion.
—Peter Singer, Professor of Philosophy, Monash University
Australia Author, Animal Liberation
Reviewed by: Dr. Vibhakar Mody Director
The Indian community at last has a book that successfully describes its vegetarian heritage. Author Steven Rosen deserves the appreciation of all true Hindus and that of true believers from all the world’s great religions.
—Dr. Vibhakar Mody Director, Hindu Alliance of America
Washington, D.C.
Reviewed by: Anant S. Tiwari
Mr. Rosen has done a splendid job in presenting the merits of vegetarianism in the world religions. Sanskrit (Hindu) literature has endorsed the non-meat diet for millennia. And now Mr. Rosen’s work may indeed supply the ‘Diet For Transcendence’ so much lacking in contemporary society.
—Anant S. Tiwari, Professor of Sanskrit
University of Gorakhpur, India
Reviewed by: Ven. H. Gunaratana Thera
The book entitled Diet for Transcendence is a most timely addition to the promotion of vegetarianism. Cultivating the thoughts of non-hatred and non-injury and abstaining from killing of any living being are so crucial for an individual’s peace, harmony, serenity, concentration and attaining liberation from suffering that the Buddha has included these principles in the Noble Eightfold Path, which is the Fourth Noble Truth in Buddhism.
—Ven. H. Gunaratana Thera, Director, Washington Buddhist Vihara
Reviewed by: Roshi Philip Kapleau
No practicing Christian, Jew, Buddhist, Hindu or Muslim can ignore the imperative of this inspiring book that the founders and patriarchs of all these higher religions renounced the killing and eating of our four-footed and feathered kin.
—Roshi Philip Kapleau, Abbot, The Zen Center, Rochester
New York Author, The Three Pillars of Zen
Reviewed by: Rashid L.R. Mahmud
All true believers should read Diet for Transcendence with an open mind. While it is true that Islam does not traditionally require votaries to abjure the use of flesh-foods, author Rosen, in his scholarly study, shows us another side of our great religion.…Drawing upon the esoteric Sufi tradition, the Holy Qu’ran and the life of the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH), the author makes a convincing case for vegetarianism in Islam. As a result, in fact, I am now de-emphasizing meat products from my own diet!
—Rashid L.R. Mahmud, Director, Center for Higher Islamic Studies
Los Angeles, California
Reviewed by: Al-Hafiz B.A. Masri

Existing dietary evidence shows that meat, with its ingrained fats, is harmful as food, and religions such as Islam…have left the choice of food open to an individual’s option according to circumstances and environment.…The author of Diet for Transcendence, Mr. Steven Rosen, knows his subject well enough to help those who would like to change their traditional culinary habits and tastes in favour of vegetarianism.

—Al-Hafiz B.A. Masri, Retired (Sunni) Imam
The Shah Jehan Mosque
Woking, England

Reviewed by: Rabbi Joseph H. Gelberman

“…a book such as Diet for Transcendence is greatly needed, and the teaching of compassion in Mr. Rosen’s book should be embraced by Jew and non-Jew alike.”

—Rabbi Joseph H. Gelberman
Tree of Life Synagogue, President, The New Seminary
Founder, The Kabbalah Center, New York

Reviewed by: Philip L. Pick

Judaism is founded on a compassionate way of life and provides a complete philosophy for non-killing in relationship to one’s food.…We hope this book will be widely read and help to encourage the trend toward a more spiritual outlook in relation to food and, consequently, mankind’s outlook in general.

—Philip L. Pick, President and Founder
The International Jewish Vegetarian Society
London Headquarters

Reviewed by: Father Thomas Berry

Vegetarianism is a way of life that we should all move toward for economic survival, physical well-being and spiritual integrity….As a Catholic priest, I highly recommend this book.

—Father Thomas Berry
Founder, Riverdale Center of Religious Research
Former Director, History of Religions Program
Fordham University, New York

Reviewed by: Rev. Alvin V. P. Hart

In this book Steven Rosen has recalled the followers of all the world religions to their vegetarian roots. We now have scientific evidence that vegetarianism is good for the body. The greatest spiritual teachers have always known that it is good for the soul.

—Rev. Alvin V. P. Hart, Episcopal Priest and Hospital Chaplain
St. Lukes-Roosevelt Hospital, New York

Reviewed by: The American Theosophist

This wonderful book provides a real service, covering the whole range of rea- sons for changing to vegetarianism…and one can incorporate as part of that intentionality the theosophical perspective that all life—human and non- human alike—is related in an interdependent whole.

—The American Theosophist

Reviewed by: On the Issues, Vol. III

To those in whom a concept of universal compassion and awareness of the sacred nature of all creation is still somewhat of a radical concept, Rosen’s book will certainly be educational. For others who are already committed to following a path of spiritual growth, and have discovered that being a vegetarian is a major step along this road, this book offers reinforcement and inspiration.

—On the Issues, Vol. III

Reviewed by: Vegetarian Times

The Western world has produced few books on vegetarianism and religion. Therefore, Steven Rosen’s book, written from a vegetarian perspective, is a welcome effort….Those who already are vegetarians will be further bolstered in their beliefs.

—Vegetarian Times

Reviewed by: Hinduism Today

Diet for Transcendence …makes it clear that all religions teach compassion and that not eating meat is much more than just a healthy way to eat. It is the basis of a profound spiritual life.

—Hinduism Today