Hi everyone, I'm new here, and have a few questions that I'd like to hear your opinion if you want to give it! Thanks for reading this even if you don't have a reply!
Firstly, I've always been a sort of...rigid person with my morals, even before I was reading about Buddhism off and on for about 6 years. I'm a vegetarian (Vegan for about 6 months last year, but there was nothing to eat!) and I've always had WAY more compassion for animals than for humans. Mostly because, well, humans cause their own suffering. I realized that even when I was a teenager. Of course, bad things happen to good people, but a lot of the times, bad things happen to people because of their actions or the type of crowd they are surrounding themselves with. But animals...have done nothing. They just live, which is much like Buddhism, I think. They just live in the moment, day to day, I don't think they worry about the future too much. And yet we factory farm them, give them horrid conditions, over breed our pet animals until they are suffering on the streets, torture them for amusement and medicines, test them for beauty products...etc....I've always had sort of a bleeding heart for animals, because they don't know why anything is happening to them like that. I'm wondering if this practice will give me more compassion for people (Of course, I feel the same way about say, starving kids in africa as I do about animals, both just had the misfortune of being born where they were) or is it okay to be sort of...distant from them? I feel that I'll always feel more about animals than people, but I'm not sure if that's good, or okay, even here in Buddhism?
The second question is kind of silly, probably a personal preference for everyone. I drink coffee every morning. I've read some Buddhists don't drink caffeine because it's seen as altering the state of mind, so I'm wondering what you guys think about this? I've limited myself to 1 cup (most days) and am thinking about quitting, but it's something I enjoy, it doesn't wake me up really. I can drink it and go right back to bed, but I like the smell and taste, it is the part of day I look forward to most, do I really have to give it up?
Thanks for reading this,