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Religious views on the fur and ivory trade

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Most Christian’s are against the fur and ivory trade. For starters, they believe they have a stewardship towards animals; therefore it is their responsibility to protect animals and not exploit them which is what occurs within the fur and ivory trade, so they see it as wrong. They are taught this in the teaching that “God made the world and gave humans dominion over it” consequently the welfare of animals is their responsibility and as animals in the trade are treated awfully it is very wrong. Another reason they disagree with it is that Proverbs 12:10 – a good man is kind to his animals. This teaches that humans should show respect for created life and not cause harm to animals unnecessarily, hence they disagree with the fur and ivory trade because humans don’t need fur to keep warm in the modern world (we have new methods such as central heating and cotton) fur farms are very cruel so they don’t show any respect towards God’s creations and elephants are killed simply for their ivory and usually in an inhumane way which does not apply to the Assisi Declaration that “animals are part of creation and deserve respect”.

All Buddhist’s disagree with the fur and ivory trade, mostly because they believe in ahimsa- which means not to harm any living being- and the First Precept is to not harm other sentient beings, but as the fur farms are very cruel and elephant are killed just for the ivory in their tusks these methods show harm and are therefore seen as wrong acts by many Buddhists. They also believe in metta which states that loving kindness should extend to all living things, hence supporting the fur and ivory trade would be wrong because it does not tend to treat animals fairly and not cause harm. The Dhammapada states “All living things fear being put to death- let no one kill or cause others to kill”; this teaching emphasises how important it is for Buddhists to show respect to all living things as they believe in the cycle of rebirth so therefore they are against the fur and ivory trade because it causes animals to suffer under pain unnecessarily and unjustly. ď‚· Metta – loving kindness should extend to all living things ď‚· Protecting the natural world and living in harmony with it ď‚· Reference to Eightfold Path, i.e. Right Action/Mindfulness

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