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At the time I wrote this story, I was very interested in comparing world religions and fascinated by the idea of keeping kosher and how such a guideline for a diet had developed. Having taken some courses to fulfill the requirement for a minor in Philosophy, I was also interested in vegetarianism and felt that keeping kosher might be an interesting step in that direction without having to give up all meat.
When I tried putting myself in the shoes of those who came up with the rules of Kosher, it made sense to divide fish into two categories, those with and those without scales, in that even children can tell the difference. The idea of sparing shellfish made sense to me in that people can become fatally ill from eating raw oysters which would also apply to fugu http://en.wikipedia.o... but I couldn't understand why fish like sharks were spared. Could it have been because they are dangerous to hunt? But what about less dangerous fish, like catfish?
Also, eating only farm animals and sparing wild animals made sense from the viewpoint of promoting herding and farming societies. Since many of the livestock have split hooves, it made sense again that this would be a good way to distinguish animals that are set apart for human consumption from those that are not. Also, in light of cannibalism practiced by some early civilizations, it seemed like this would have been a good way to protect humans, who clearly do not have hooves.
So, I imagined a prehistoric couple, a hunter and his wife, who live on fertile land with plenty to eat in the ways of animals to hunt and fruits to pick.
Something had to happen in order for them to change their eating habit.
Imagining different scenarios led to this fable which I'm happy to call my own. It's inspired by the rules of kosher but not specifically meant to promote kosher dietary laws, although it would be nice if people were to eat more organic vegetables and fruits and less meat after reading this story, just because it's better for health, better for our small planet, and also more compassionate.
If you'd like to comment on this post, please consider answering the questions below. :-)
Question 1: Would this be a good book for teaching philosophy to children? Why or why not?
Question 2: What would be a good philosophical question to ask children, based on the content of this book?
Question 3: Please rate this book as a reading material for teaching philosophy to children on a scale of 1 to 10.