Do Plants Have Feelings, Too?


If your choice to be vegetarian or vegan has anything to do with the yogic principle of ahimsa, or non-harming, you probably think you're doing less harm to living things and the environment by choosing to eat plants instead of animals. But how often do you consider the harm you're doing to the plants--also living beings--when you eat your vegetables?

"Just because we humans can't hear them doesn't mean plants don't howl," writes Natalie Angier in a recent NYTimes article about the ways plants fight off their predators. For example, plant scientists have found that plants release chemicals to attract large predatory insects in hopes that they will eat the smaller insects that prey on the plant.

It's a compelling argument. Maybe plants really do want to live, but we have to eat something to survive. Is eating plants the lesser of two evils? Or are we doing harm either way?