FEATURE: Amani Michael


“You can’t call yourself compassionate and spiritual while still eating animals.” 

This is all it took to begin my journey with veganism: a little bit of relationship drama.  Around 4 years ago, my partner at the time was upset with me and – during an argument, in a moment of lashing out – showed me the very real truth that I was not living my values consistently.
Though they were surely just trying to hurt my feelings more than offering anything helpful or insightful (they’re not at all someone who consciously identifies with veganism), their words resonated with me, and continue to resonate today.  I have always identified with being a very reflective, honest, and sincere person, always named myself as someone deeply committed to not only knowing my truths, but also to keeping both inner and outer truths aligned.  With that one sentence, they had cut right to the simple fact that I felt and thought of myself one way while practicing a life to the contrary.
Immediately, I set myself to researching and exploring every question that felt uncomfortable in my spirit.
In that moment, I ‘became vegan’ – not meaning someone different from myself, not some distant and removed identity, but rather exactly myself, the person I had always felt and known myself to be.  The person I had not yet been able to consent to being, because I had been unwilling to permit myself space to engage in my own truths.  In that moment, I committed to truth, and found what I identify now as veganism: a practice of radically questioning, reflecting, learning, and feeling.  A practice of realigning and reimagining.  A practice of liberation.
Now, as I am working each day towards the liberation of all animals – including myself –  I find that there is no place in my life where my practice of veganism does not reach.  It touches on the question of what it means to exist as animal, to exist as Black/black, to exist as queer, to exist as femme, to exist as spirit while also existing in a body.  To exist on this earth which I am sharing with others, and which shares itself with me.  To exist honestly, vulnerably, intimately, accountably. 
Though many perceive veganism as a restriction and a limitation of experience, I know it to be what gave/gives me my own liberation, and I am full of gratitude.  I am endlessly thankful to be learning to exist more as my full and aligned self, and that someone knew to tell me when I wasn’t.


(3) BIO:

Amani Michael is a queer Black vegan liberationist, writer, and healer - they are the founder of intuit.hue, an online community centered on healing through art and spirituality, especially centering minoritised identities and experiences. 

As they have come into their practice in recent years – intuitively exploring tarot reading, chakra healing, relational astrology, and dream interpretation – they have come to see it as offering spaces of quiet, reflection, and reclaiming in a world full of noise and trauma.

Along with this intuitive work, they are also deeply passionate about language and relationships; in their writing on narrative/discourse, they are constantly deconstructing the question of identity and imagination, how we use language to tell stories about what we are and aren’t, and – like any other Piscean spirit – what we dream of.

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