Vegetarian by choice?

Ribbing vegetarians comes easy to me. I know, that isn't nice, but the wicked me can't control the urge. Like yesterday a student was telling me she was vegetarian. My ribbing got her to retort it was 'out of choice'. That she enjoyed being a herbivore. That the sinful pleasures in being a carnivore wasn't strong enough a temptation. That she wouldn't budge no matter how much her carnivore friends tried.

Fair enough. In fact, I think beneath the ribbing I have this grudging sense of admiration for ones who can keep off, what's staple for the likes me.

But then again, was her choice truly hers?

The 'Theory of Reasoned Action' suggests that, a person's behavioral intention depends on the person's attitude about the behavior and subjective norms (BI = A + SN). If a person intends to do a behavior then it is likely that the person will do it. Furthermore a person's intentions are themselves guided by two things: the person's attitude towards the behavior and the subjective norm. Behavioral intention measures a person's relative strength of intention to perform a behavior. Attitude consists of beliefs about the consequences of performing the behavior multiplied by his or her valuation of these consequences. Subjective norm is seen as a combination of perceived expectations from relevant individuals or groups along with intentions to comply with these expectations. In other words, "the person's perception that most people who are important to him or her think he should or should not perform the behavior in question."

The student in question told me she was a Jain. Now I may not know too much about them, except that they steer clear off stuff that's even remotely carnivorous. Moreover, even as herbivores they have their reservations with certain kinds of food (Wikipedia calls it, the most radical form of religiously-motivated diet regulation in the Indian subcontinent). Therefore guess what happens if you grow up in such a diet regulated environment? Your diet attitudes will for sure be fashioned by your family that acts as a normative reference group. Plus the subjective norms that kick in reinforce what then turns into exhibited behaviour.

One of vegetarianism.

Termed by Herbivores as a choice that's 'deeply personal'.

Convinced?

Comments

Krishna Sagar said…
Ah, the eternal popular topic ! Reams of paper have been consumed, millions of webpages have covered this topic. Being vegetarian might be due to various factors such as religious,social,health, economic et al. However some vegetarians might feel its more pleasurable to remain so, rather than to convert to non-veg. Could be a case of strong habitual consumption (Like the ubiquitous Iyer uncle sticking to his early morning cuppa of filter coffee!) or the strong normative reference groups. Habits die hard and it demands for a monumental effort from marketers to change the consumption patterns. There has to be a strong force/reason/emotion for the potential change in habits.
jaishikha said…
Hello there! Long time. How are things? After reading this post, just got reminded of the tenet that you firmly espouse and I would heartily negate: Society is built on debate. Why are you so fond of Verbal volleys,if I may ask at the risk of sounding impertinent :)?
nikhil said…
where you have gone?

without informing your fans,we are waiting for your next blog?
Prof.Ray Titus said…
KS,

I agree...habits die hard!

Jaishikha,

Its been some time...great to hear from you...Impertinent? You kidding?

The way I remember, the verbal volleys drew great returns...the game's what am so fond of! Weren't you?

Aren't you? :)
Prof.Ray Titus said…
Nikhil,

Good riddance to bad rubbish? You seem to think otherwise... :)

In Cochin, back home...back on the blog too...

Cheers.
jaishikha said…
I would say that I skirt conversations that try to get the better of me. And it's bad right if conversations or volleys put one of the participants on the defensive? Loss of perspective? But I daresay we will both stick to our respective guns in an attempt to co-exist till 2012 at least :). Right?
Prof.Ray Titus said…
'Co-exist' sounds 'accomodated'...vocal and at it till kingdom come is more like it...never mind Roland Emmerich n other doomsday idiots... :)

About defensive play, ever seen Ivan Lendl and his clay court baseline play?
jaishikha said…
Please enlighten me. And as for the movie, I am still tempted to watch it. A world of debris on screen...

Please be vocal. I will listen.
Prof.Ray Titus said…
Baseline play -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tennis_strategy

Ivan Lendl -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Lendl

The movie is a surely a good watch, especially for its sheer scale of destruction...will try n catch it too...

Your response to my vocal 'efforts'...appreciate it...truly :)

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