So cosmic skeptic, one of the most vocal advocates of a vegan diet, stopped being vegan.
So normally my reaction to when a celebrity is not vegan anymore is the following:
But this one here, this CosmicSkeptic one, is actually hitting me dead center in the feels.
I’m Florian, award-winning personal trainer, published author and vegan for 8 years. And in this article, we’re going to address the CosmicSkeptic situation.
But first, let’s start with a quick background on Alex O’Connor
Alex O’Connor Background: Youtube Channel And Philosophy
Alex J. O’Connor (born: March 27, 1999) is the founder of the “CosmicSkeptic” YouTube channel.
The videos are largely focused on philosophical debate and ideas. He has produced videos on topics such as free speech, rationality, religion, and – of course: veganism.
His most notable videos on his Youtube channel arguably include talks with notable experts in respected fields, such as Peter Singer, Richard Dawkins, Bishop Robert Barron, and William Lane Craig.
Alex O’Connor is a graduate of philosophy and theology from St. John’s College, Oxford University, Alex is an international public speaker and debater.
Alex made a video once he went vegan 3 years ago quite publicly. And that is where CosmicSkeptic’s vegan situation starts:
CosmicSkeptic Vegan Story: From Peter Singer To ExVegan
After going vegan 3 years ago in 2019/2020 – he had a speech at an animal rights conference, and talked with Peter Singer, and Earthling Ed.
Now, after about 2 and a half years of going vegan, Alex is not quite sure about the effectiveness of the boycotting of animal products – and has doubts about the health side of things.
Let’s address these 2 points rationally, and then go into the emotions that cause them:
1. The truth about the effectiveness of boycotting
Capitalism is driven by supply and demand. Contrary to popular belief, entrepreneurship or a company is not creating demand, instead – companies are harnessing demand.
Companies are very much reactive. It starts with the customer, and their needs – and it ends with the companies, and their solution to that need.
You can imagine this like water. Companies are not the wells of water or the springs. They do not create water. Instead, companies are the turbines that harness the power of the already existing water flow.
If there’s less water, there’s less need for turbines. If there’s less demand, there’s less supply. This is a fundamental law of markets that one cannot argue with.
In regards to the individual effects of boycotting – well, Alex is an Influencer. So he’s not only boycotting the production himself, he’s also influencing hundreds of thousands of people to do the same. Right?
According to animal kill clock, 6 billions of animals have already been killed this year in the United States for food alone. Given that the United States has 300 million in habitants, the average person has already killed 20. 
So even if you do not make a huge difference, you make some difference. You reduce the net amount of suffering that is on this planet.
The second argument are the health effects of veganism:
2. Health effects of veganism
The position of the academy of nutrition and dietetics clearly show that veganism is an adequate way of feeding yourself for all stages of life. 
We see that both vegans and omnivores have a similar amount of protein intake. 
We see that a plant-based diet is the only diet that has ever reversed heart disease, one of our leading killers. 
In one of the largest nutritional data, the China Study, we see that cancer is geographically localized, the more plant-based foods – the less cancer risk. 
So rationally, health shouldn’t really be a determining factor as well.
So what happened?
Let’s look at the emotions behind Cosmic Skeptic’s decision:
1. The cold breeze of being in the arena
Only a small digit percentile of the population is vegan, so fundamentally – being vegan is being different.
Peter Thiel, best-selling author and business genius writes in his book ‘Zero To One’:
“The prospect of being lonely but right—dedicating your life to something that no one else believes in—is already hard. The prospect of being lonely and wrong can be unbearable.”
The absolute hardest part about being vegan is the social alienation that comes along with it.
Former US president Theodor Roosevelt had this man in the arena speech. When you stop being a spectator and you head into the arena – you start to increase your chance of winning and fulfillment, but so do you increase your chance of public ridicule and defeat.
You do not really appreciate the warm comfort of the crowd while you’re in the spectator seat, until you’re confronted with the cold breeze in the eerily empty arena.
2. The gold bag of being exceptional
Being vegan is lonely, because it’s exceptional. And exceptional by it’s definition, is far from average.
Not dissimilar to financial success and being in shape.
When you develop yourself as a person and ultimately become non-average – you typically have less time to spend to be at the bar with your homies, but…
… you also typically start to think differently so you can’t really resonate with your homies in the first place.
Becoming exceptional is like getting handed a bag of gold, that once opened releases the snakes of envy, shame and resentment.
It’s a double edged sword that you can conceptionally understand beforehand, but only when you get it do you understand the full breadth of it.
The solution to this dilemma is to understand that there’s no feasible alternative. Misery loves company, and company loves misery. To a certain extent.
3. The art of pain
Cosmic Skeptic’s decision is certainly also influenced by him being in pain. Apparently he has a stomach virus, that he assumes has been caused by veganism.
Now – when you’re in pain, generally emotionality is kicking in the front door while logic is hiding out in the basement.
Even more so, pain is a magnifying glass that exposes your deepest insecurities. It’s hard to be in the arena when you’re in top physical shape, it’s unbearable to be in the arena when you’re wounded and all the spectators are urging you to retreat or die in combat.
In those situations, the best thing to ask yourself is how high are the chances that in the absence of veganism – you’d got sick as well? As humans, we periodically get health issues throughout our life. That is normal.
So to blame it entirely on veganism is an easy conclusion – but not entirely fair.
What is my advice to Alex?
My advice to Alex is the same I’d give to every ex vegan:
1. Get some good advisors
that can help you with your health situation. You gotta listen to the few, and not the many. Because as the philosopher George Berkely said: “Few men think, all will have opinions.”
2. Be an ex vegan – but do it right
If you are truly dead set that the absence of animal products is causing you health problems, eat either cell-based meat or oysters. Oysters do not have a brain, and therefore do not have a computer that processes sensory input – and as a result, do not have proper pain or pleasure receptors.
So to any vegan that is dead set on becoming an ex-vegan:
- Get some good advice first, and…
- If you can’t do it – either go for some cell-based meat or oysters, as it’s the lesser evil.
One of the quickest way to get good advice in the area of health and fitness is to check out my free ebook ‘The Fit Vegans Secrets’.
How would you like to download new software into your brain that helps you get in shape quickly and sustainably?
That new software, is better information. And the better information – is my ‘Fit Vegans Secrets’ book.
It has 109 pages and helps you re-wire your brain using cutting-edge psychological tactics – so you finally do what you know you should do.
You can get it for absolutely free by heading over to fitvegans.com/secrets
 Animal Kill Clock: https://animalclock.org/
 Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Vegetarian Diets: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27886704/
 Nutrient profiles of vegetarian and nonvegetarian dietary patterns: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23988511/
 Can lifestyle changes reverse coronary heart disease? The Lifestyle Heart Trial: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1973470/
 Atlas of cancer mortality in the People’s Republic of China. An aid for cancer control and research: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7287273/