Unity of Greater Portland will finish its Season for the Earth program with several events presented by author and musician Dr. Will Tuttle and his wife Madeline.
On Saturday, June 25th, Tuttle will present a day long training that explores vegan living. The training delves more deeply into the vegan teachings of his bestselling book, The World Peace Diet, and will include lectures, role-playing and guided meditation.
After obtaining a bachelors degree at Colby College in the early 1970s, Tuttle said he went on a pilgrimage to discover more about what he should be doing with his life. He and his brother set out on a walking tour. Over a few months, they walked all the way to Tennessee, ending up at The Farm, which was at the time the largest commune in the world, Tuttle said. Though he only stayed in the community a few weeks, he said that things he learned there, and seeing the people who lived there thriving, led Tuttle to become a vegetarian himself.
Tuttle’s journey didn’t end there. He became vegan 35 years ago after learning more about the routine mistreatment of hens and cows for dairy products and eggs, he said. After earning a Master’s Degree, Tuttle went to Korea where he became a Zen Monk. In the monastery, he said he realized that there was a universal teaching that has been repressed. This teaching is that “We’ll never have happiness, and health and harmony in our human world as long as we are unnecessarily harming and abusing other animals,” Tuttle said.
When he returned from Korea, Tuttle earned a PhD at the University of California, Berkeley. He taught college courses in a variety of subjects, continued his research into the effects of animal agriculture, and wrote The World Peace Diet, which was an Amazon bestseller in 2010, and has been translated into 16 languages worldwide.
He and Madeline now travel extensively, doing workshops, lectures and concerts of original piano music composed by Tuttle. “We have a really deep love of nature, animals and human beings on this earth. We try to spread a message of kindness, compassion and caring for ecosystems and for animals, for future generations, wildlife and children through the lectures we give that promote a more sustainable and mindful eating,” Tuttle said.
“I no longer blindly believed all the official stories that I had been told by my society, and started to trust my inner wisdom, and I found it to be a great gift,” he said. The seminar will include techniques of meditation and imagery, original music and art.
Events will wrap up at 7 p.m. on Monday, June 27th, with a concert of original piano music. Madeline will play the silver flute and have her paintings on display at this event as well.
Tuttle said that the events are open to everyone, and emphasized that it is a non-threatening environment in which to learn.
“There’s no sense that there’s a right way and wrong way to be living, it’s just to understand more clearly ourselves and our society, and then for each one of us as individuals to make an effort to live our lives as we feel is right,” he said. “The problem is people don’t have information to be able to do that very well in our society,” he added.
The workshops are meant to provide this information, which he said is very liberating. “I think it’s one of the great adventures we can go on in our world today, this adventure of understanding ourselves and our society more deeply by understanding the impact of our food choices and by connecting more with our intuition.”
All of the events will be held at Unity of Greater Portland, 54 River Road in Windham. For more information, contact the church at 893-1233 or visit www.unitygreaterportland.org.