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Pork: The Other White Meat?

In folkloric terms, eating the meat of the pig is said to contribute to lack of morality and shame, plus greed for wealth, laziness, indulgence, dirtiness and gluttony (Ed: ??? Some weird folk tales they read). We insult a person by calling him or her a "Pig" when they demonstrate these characteristics (Ed: and we call people "chicken" when they are cowardly, "fox" when they are sly and cunning, "worm" when they are cravenly, "bitches" when they are bitchy and "Horse" when they look like a Horse and so on). Muslims are forbidden by God to eat the meat of the pig (pork). This is detailed in verses 2:173, 5:3, 6:145, and 16:115 of the Qur'an. An exemplary verse is quoted here:

"He has only forbidden you dead meat (Ed: All meat is by definition dead. Why should 'dead' meat - which comes from Allah too - be any more haram?), and blood (Ed: But even killing animals the Halal way necessitates leaving quite a bit of blood in the animal! Aren't Muslims in a quandary, then?), and the flesh of swine, and any (food) over which the name of other than Allah has been invoked (Ed: They pray over food consumed by people of other religions? That's why it's important for Christians to say grace, and for other theists too to pray over their food before eating it...). But if one is forced by necessity, without wilful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits, then Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."

Is Pork Forbidden to Muslims Only?

The Jews and Christians are also forbidden from eating pork. Here is a quote from the Old Testament to that effect: "And the swine, because it divideth the hoof, yet cheweth not the cud (Ed: Isn't chewing the cud disgusting and shouldn't that make Cows Haram?), it is unclean unto you: ye shall not eat of their flesh, nor touch their dead carcase." Deuteronomy 14:8 Many Christians believe that this verse was directed only at the Jews (Ed: Most. And how many Christians do not eat pork?).

But Jesus himself says during the Sermon on the Mount; "Think not that I am come to destroy the Law, or the Prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. (Ed: So we should follow all the intricate laws laid out in Leviticus and Deuteronomy too, then? And have our males be mutilated [male genital mutilation ie circumcision]? And worse, besides? Which also conveniently ignores how Jesus supposedly proclaimed all food fit for consumption)" Some Christians say that, after a vision by St. Peter, God cleansed all animals and made them fit and lawful for human consumption. If ALL animals are cleansed by Peter's vision, this includes dogs, cats, vultures, and rats: but you just don't see people getting excited about a cat-meat sandwich like they do over barbecued pork or bacon (Ed: Just because you don't like something doesn't mean that it is forbidden to eat). Others say that it was Paul who rescinded the law forbidding pork to humans, in order to appease the Romans, who enjoyed the taste of pig-meat. Many excuses have been given, but none are very sound (Ed: Neither is this essay).

Many Far Eastern traditions also discourage the eating of pork. The 3,000 year old Confucian Book of Rites says, "A gentleman does not eat the flesh of pigs and dogs." (Ed: Much Chinese cooking is done with lard, and the Chinese love their pork) Although many Chinese are avid eaters of pork today, physicians of ancient China recognized pork-eating as the root of many human ailments (Ed: ???. And they recognised mercury consumption as the way to a long life!). Buddhists, Jains and Hindus usually avoid eating any kind of meat (Ed: So why not make everything Haram?).

Bad effects of pork consumption

Pig's bodies contain many toxins, worms and latent diseases (Ed: That's what cooking is for. And other animals have diseases like BSE, Salmonella et al). Although some of these infestations are harbored in other animals, modern veterinarians say that pigs are far more predisposed to these illnesses than other animals (Ed: Where do these people get their scientific information?). This could be because pigs like to scavenge and will eat any kind of food, including dead insects, worms (Ed: Chickens eat worms), rotting carcasses, excreta (including their own), garbage, and other pigs (Ed: Rabbits are like this too, eating their own excrement and other unsavoury 'foods'. Anyhow, modern pigs are raised in hygenic conditions).

Influenza (flu) is one of the most famous illnesses which pigs share with humans. This illness is harbored in the lungs of pigs during the summer months and tends to affect pigs and humans in the cooler months. Sausage contains bits of pigs' lungs, so those who eat pork sausage tend to suffer more during epidemics of influenza (Ed: That's what cooking is for. And sausages contain many things. Beef sausages contain spinal cord, brain tissue etc. And let's not even talk about Hamburgers). Pig meat contains excessive quantities of histamine and imidazole compounds, which can lead to itching and inflammation; growth hormone, which promotes inflammation and growth; sulphur-containing mesenchymal mucus, which leads to swelling and deposits of mucus in tendons and cartilage, resulting in arthritis, rheumatism, etc (Ed: ???). Sulphur helps cause firm human tendons and ligaments to be replaced by the pig's soft mesenchymal tissues (Ed: !!! This sounds like total hogwash. Replacement of your tissues by the pigs? This has already become worse than Creation 'Science'), and degeneration of human cartilage. Eating pork can also lead to gallstones and obesity, probably due to its high cholesterol and saturated fat content (Ed: Consuming palm oil leads to Coronary Heart Disease). The pig is the main carrier of the taenia solium worm, which is found it its flesh. These tapeworms are found in human intestines with greater frequency in nations where pigs are eaten. This type of tapeworm can pass through the intestines and affect many other organs, and is incurable once it reaches beyond a certain stage. One in six people in the US and Canada has trichinosis from eating trichina worms which are found in pork. Many people have no symptoms to warn them of this, and when they do, they resemble symptoms of many other illnesses. These worms are not noticed during meat inspections, nor are they killed by salting or smoking. Few people cook the meat long enough to kill the trichinae. The rat (another scavenger) also harbors this disease. There are dozens of other worms, germs, diseases and bacteria which are commonly found in pigs, many of which are specific to the pig, or found in greater frequency in pigs. (Ed: Modern pigs are not as sickly as ancient ones)

Pigs are biologically similar to humans, and their meat is said to taste similar to human flesh (Ed: By who? Has the writer tasted both himself? Anyway, why does that makes it wrong to eat pig flesh? For all we know, human meat could be DELICIOUS, and the only thing stopping us from eating human meat is the fact that it's taboo to eat one of your own kind. So, eating something that TASTES like human meat is perfectly fine. Vegetarian meat is similar in composition to real meat [proteins] and it tastes similar to real meat, does it make it any more wrong for a vegan to eat vegetarian meat?). Pigs have been used for dissection in biology labs due to the similarity between their organs and human organs (Ed: So have frogs and rabbits). People with insulin-dependent diabetes usually inject themselves with pig insulin (Ed: I sympathise with Muslim diabetics. Actually, porcine insulin isn't used anymore!). If you pour Coke (yes, the soda) on a slab of pork, and wait a little while, you will see worms crawl out of it (Ed: ???. This is really astoundingly grossly wrong. Maybe the pork used for the aforementioned experiment was left to rot for several days first).

Kindness to animals

Every creature was created by Allah for a purpose. The Prophet always encouraged being kind to animals. Although we should not eat the meat of the pig, it doesn't mean that we should hate pigs. We should show them the same kindness as any other animal, and not abuse or torture them. Pigs score high on tests devised to determine animal intelligence; in other words, they are very smart. It used to be that Europe people believed that pork would taste better if the pigs were kept in a state of filth, but this is not the natural inclination of the pig. When left to their own devices, it is said that pigs do not like to soil their sleeping quarters. As for their tendency to wallow in mud, that is done mainly to keep cool.


References: Animals in Islam, by Al-Hafiz B.A. Masri, Diet for a New America, by John Robbins, Islamic Dietary Laws and Practices, by M.M. Hussaini, M.S. and A.H. Sakr, Ph.D. Homotoxicology, by Dr. Hans-Heinrich Reckweg Muslims in Alien Society, by Muhammad Samiallah
(Ed: A very selective, biased and suspect bibliography, almost all by Muslims)


"You are what you eat" ------ American proverb

by Alyssa Samadi tzhre@tzhre.seanet.com


What a wonderfully fallacious article. Much of it was applicable in ancient times. Tim The Great says that is why many ancient cultures forbade eating pork. But with modern standards?


PS: My Muslim friend commented that this writer is very biased :)


Cheers to Xephyris for help in deconstructing this ridiculous article


NB: I also found this weird article on why keeping dogs is bad but I haven't gotten down to debunking and annotating it yet. Suffice to say - ware what you read, for not all of it is true, especially the use of isolated scientific studies by writers with vested interests to support suspect opinions! Starting with a conclusion and gathering disparate, unrelated facts of dubitable veracity to "prove" it is no way to construct a reasonable argument.