We started the talk with one very basic question – what does vegan actually mean? “Being a vegan is essentially living in harmony with nature,” she started explaining. It’s a simple way of life of respecting the universe and all the living beings that are part of it, and that means not harming them, much less killing or slaughtering them. Vegans are not only defined by what they eat, but the principle of not eating animals extends further – they also don’t consume food or ingredients that are produced by exploiting animals such as eggs, milk and honey.
Ms. Solomon has lived in Bali since the late 1990s, and fell in love with how Bali celebrates life like no other place in the world. After settling in, Ms. Solomon built her enterprise of healthy living and natural consciousness, Down to Earth – where she produces, distributes and caters everything that reflects her macrobiotic principles - organic food, vegetarianism and healing through food. Earth Café is one of Bali’s best known and well established healthy eating establishments and serves organic vegan food in its two locations of Seminyak and Ubud. As more and more people are becoming aware of the environmental and health benefits of going plant-based and the vegan culture has grown, Ms. Solomon initiated the first vegan festival in the Southeast Asian region in 2015.
Fast forward to this year’s festival itself, we’re eager to know how those joyful ethics translate into a three-day event? In her gracious words, Ms. Solomon answered calmly, “The vegan lifestyle goes hand in hand, if not close to the heart, with spirituality and expressing the vibes that came out of it. Bali Vegan Festival is basically a celebration of life, one that we share and spread with all the community.” She explained further about what we should expect from the weekend festival, from spreading knowledge through speeches and film screenings, doing many physical and mental activities together with yoga and Qi Gong, sharing great food from the countless vendors as well as enjoying groovy music freely. But most importantly, it’s a gathering of consciousness, one that transcends age, gender, race and nationality.
Lastly, with the marvelous agenda, we were curious about what Ms. Solomon personally expected from this year’s festival. She closes with a beautiful message, “We invite everyone from all over the world to join us in this celebration of animals and the earth. Regardless of whether or not you are vegan or just curious about this way of life, the festival is open to all. It’s a celebration of life, so we wish for all the community to take part – entry to the main Ubud soccer field part of the festival is free (The Vegan Village) and festival goers can enjoy free yoga sessions, music, kids activities and entry to the marketplace. With so many awful things happening in the world, we are here to give balance.”
Bali Vegan Festival 2017 will be held on October 6-8 at Paradiso Ubud, Taksu Spa and the Ubud Soccer Field where entry will be FREE.
For more info, go to http://www.baliveganfestival.