Thursday, December 6, 2007


I guess its only inevitable that when you talk about "hypocrisy" and contradictions in lifestyles, you are bound to get comments. Ive heard stuff about not being pure because I mentioned that it was the first time going out to dance without drinking or smoking. This might sound like a big deal, but I have gone out 4 times in the past 12 months. Most of it included drinking wine. Instead of saying:
"Hey! Awesome that you had a great time dancing and not having to drink!
Not bad for a white guy!".....I hear:

I have no right to get on your case, but geez, your "Monday" post from December 4th has been bugging me since I read it. Maybe I completely misunderstood what you were all about. Maybe I just didn't read all your previous posts carefully enough. But nowhere do I remember seeing any other references to recreational drinking and "herbs". I'm disheartened, to say the least. Now I'm wondering all sorts of things. Raw is great, raw is wonderful, raw gives you a natural high... yeah. But have you honestly been practicing what you've been preaching? You said, "Im glad that I enjoy it enough now that I can do it totally sober and high on the experience." Was the first experience so awful that it had to be augmented with something? Was drugging the system really necessary? Or have I completely missed something and are wine and "herbs" a part of the raw scene that nobody talks about?

I'm not giving you a "don't do drugs" lecture. You're welcome to do what you like; you're an adult. But I am concerned that you could be misrepresenting the whole raw thing. If you want to do this self-medication or reality escape (or whatever it is for you) thing, just come clean about it. Judging by the great comments you receive, you're a role model to a lot of people, especially those who are just starting out with the lifestyle. You're young, good-looking, and "in-the-loop" in the NYC raw scene; people are going to assume you know what you're talking about. If doing this stuff is what helps get you through the day, just say so. But don't just say it's all the diet and the great company if that isn't the whole story.

Sorry if this sounds confrontational. I'm just not one to let things go. And if I'm completely off-base here, let me know. Blogging (and most forms of Internet communication) are kind of notorious for misinterpretation.


Now...reader, you know I like you. Hopefully youre not upset that I posted it.

Here was my response:


I really appreciate all the time you took to write to me.

I'll clear everything up tonight. I dont smoke now, but you have to be realistic about things. Just the fact that I even mentioned it shows that Im not a hypocrite. I usually have two glasses of red wine during dancing, and it DOES make a difference. I dont care if you are 100% or not, a little wine in the system makes the music sound a little bit nicer.

I was sad reading everything, because I felt like I let you down. Maybe I'll just post our emails for the next issue. And I never trashed smoking or drinking. Its totally unnatural to inhale burning plant matter, but tell that to all the indigenous cultures that do it every so often in ceremonies with all different kinds of plants.

I am completely for cannabis consumption, but I would recommend simply eating it instead. Im not sure where he ranked it, but David Wolfe said that cannabis flowers are one of the Earth's most perfect foods.

I am 100% raw, and its great. But there are other things to experience in life on top of that. Combinations. What if I ate peyote or mushrooms and went dancing? No unnatural fire involved there...who makes up the rules that a raw foodist must be completely pure of every mind altering substance available...that RAW should be enough?

Anyone who tells you that hasnt done anything else. Ive experienced complete bliss while 100% and with nothing else, but I had to have tons of sunshine, be doing breathing exercises, doing skin brushing, and getting adequate physical activity. Only then would I be SOARING at 100%. I could be doing massive amounts of raw smoothies and if I was missing other elements that I just listed, I wouldn't feel as good. So what are we aiming for? Its not just food. I believe that raw plant food is essential for getting there, but its not the only pilot if you know what I mean.

I would only recommend very small amounts of whatever a person likes to do (as natural as possible, preferred...) I have done other substances while 100% raw, and it is different, but occasionally (once a week dancing?) might be alright.

Id much rather see someone who drinks coffee and is raw than someone who is cooked and drinks coffee. Same for alcohol, drugs, and whatever.
At least they are doing 90-100% raw plant foods.
Should we negate all the positives if they happen to not be perfect?

I am without a doubt completely for 100% raw veganism (does that include bugs?) and getting fresh air and growing your own food and being physically active...but there are other experiences out there that one should try. Some yes, some no, but I dont make the rules. If you like what I am for, then its cool. I just want you to keep reading....

Im actually surprised that I havent heard more yet, honestly you were the first to mention this. I really do appreciate the thoughts though. I like reading your words and I always think you have good things to say.

I hope this helped...



california girl said...

Good response, Anthony! I think "raw" is really about being pure and I think there is room for "recreation". I had a glass of syrah made w/ organic grapes tonight and that is a pleasure I don't intend to forego. I am a newbie but my experience so far has been that the more pure your intake, the more pure your thoughts and feelings and it fuels the desire to be more so. But I have no intention of completely passing by all of life's pleasures and senses. I'd say the more committed to this path, likely the more pure those indulgences become.

Cara said...

Excellent post. Refreshingly honest.

Anonymous said...

I guess I'll introduce myself. My name is Kara and I'm a freshman college student in Oklahoma. College life is great there's always events to go to and I go to a christian school so we sometimes have christian concerts. It's just kinda of hard to stay raw at the events. So I know what you're saying about that being the first time not smoking and drinking at a dance. Congrad on that accomplishment. Everyone needs support sometimes.
Anyway, You have the clearest face I've ever seen. What do you do or what do you eat to keep you skin so clear?
I don't have a huge acne problem, but I still have some here and there. Please help me!!!
Okay well thanks for your time, and I hope you have an awesome day.
God blessed,

alissa said...

dear anthony

you ARE a good role model, and I appreciate your honesty. I think a lot of people get really discouraged and disillusioned trying to live up to this purist ideal that doesn't necessarily exist. i think that's a very unhealthy and unbalanced way to be. we are all human. YOU are NOT responsible for someone else's level of RAW. you are responsible for yourself. if you inspire others, that's great. but other people need to take responsibility for THEMSELVES and take the experience of others as guidance - not the bible. if they don't agree with how you deal with things, they should implement that IN THEIR OWN LIVES - not berate YOU for not living out THEIR IDEALS AND MORALITY. After all you are only a human being. You clearly make a sustained and honest effort. And if that's not good enough for other people, maybe they should look elsewhere for support. Perhaps, within themselves.

Dhrumil Purohit said...

"50 said go ahead and switch the style up and if they hate, let them hate and watch the money pile up"

Just replace 50 with Dhru!

Dhrumil Purohit said...

Oh, and...

"Everything I'm not made me everything I am" - Kanye West

greenfeline said...

Bravo on your post. I love reading your blog because you think for yourself! I see so much dogmatism in this movement it is ridiculous!

wyldegirl said...

THANK YOU for posting this email (although i'm sure it's tough to read a comment like that directed at you and even harder to share it with others) because really. . . why does it all matter so much? You have a wonderful blog, full of inspiring and informative words/thoughts, and much more than the percentage of raw that you eat, it matters what percent postive energy you're releasing into the world. And you, my friend, are putting a lot out there.
I mentioned this at dinner the other night, and i'll say it again- that the rules and obsessive dogmatism that accompanies many people in their raw journey can be a bit disheartening. This is a way of being that has the potential to be life-changing and THE MOST nourishing, eco-friendly and glow-inducing lifestyle EVER. I hate to see people criticizing others, swirling in their own negative thoughts or feeling like they need to "police" everyone involved with raw foods.
Live and let live. Anthony- you rock.
We all do.

Mueller said...

I just stumbled across your blog from Great post. Very refreshing.

I have been vegan for a couple months and 100% raw for about the past 10 days. On another forum I brought up alcohol; whether it could be part of the raw food diet(I know Sarma serves raw wine and Saki) and I was just curious if other raw fooders ever drank.

Well, I got a couple, 'alcholol is 100% posion and doesn't belong in your body posts.' Some of these people need to wake up, look around at mainstreem society and stop being so elitist because it is going to hurt the movement.

I for one would rather be 100% raw and go out for drinks with friends a few times a month(umm hello going to concerts, having fun and being social is good for me!!) than not be raw at all because I'm not living up to some ideal.

Being raw for me, is about working on myself physically, mentally and emotionally and sometimes that includes having a few drinks with friends!!

Mueller, 26, NYC

Natasha said...

Anthony, I love this blog. I love the awesome sense of community whilst reading the comments. (Though, admittedly, I don't always have time to read all comments at present. I will soon, however.) I love your passion. You are an inspiration to many. I, too, appreciate your response. It is truly refreshing, indeed. Bless you, Child of Light.

Anna-Thea said...

About the alcohol thing, I was sure that wine is raw!?
I just learnt about that alcohol affects the sentral nerve system, which I found really grose, kind of, you know. I'm perfect, what does this stuff do to my nerve system? is what I'm thinking. Love your blog, GREAT pictures, so inspiering. I really wish I could socialize with young raw'ers.....Feel like moving to US or sumpm, ha ha:p