To Preach Or Not To Preach, That Is The Q
Posted by The Hammer at 04/26/2014
i am always amazed when vegan people desperately want to be with non veg people. I don't mean that you have to have a bad attitude towards non vegans, after all we, at least myself, was a regular non vegan meat eater also. But when i remind my meat eating days, i am always most grateful to other vegans who didn't it when i ate non vegan, at least they always made a sligght remark that eventually woke me up.
Ask yourself, all the great people who changed the ethical course of history, were PREACHERS, people who were so morally outraged that they did rub it into ANYONES face, no fear of being called .
Martin Luther King!
I know, very well from experience, that if I eat my lunch at work, and people comment how healthy it is, or how good my skin looks, a comment like "thanks, I eat a plant based diet, and follow a vegan lifestyle" is going to open a door to a conversation more than "Murder! Imprisonment! your lunch is morgue!" I'm more likely to get someone interested in being vegan buy making them a meal, or pointing them in the right direction about where to get information if they are really interested in finding out more about being a vegan.
Same with my church. If I start handing out Bibles, I'm going to quickly lose friends.
My son changed faith, and soon learnt that preaching at people just doesn't work, no matter how passionate you are about the topic.
The Hammer05/03/2014 23:13:09
so you are saying that leafletting (vegan outreach) and trying to educate people doesn't work?
Actually "preaching" does work very well. Bill Clinto turned vegan when his doctor told him about the relation of his diet and his heart attacks. Las Vegas tycoon Steve Wynn did change to a vegan diet the same day after his friend showed him a video about veganism.
Keeping silent NEVER works, only at the moment somebody starts a conversation and the silence ends, at that very moment, things can change.
All ugly things like rape, racism etc, needs a LOUD VOICE, not silence and "hoping" that things will change.
After a couple of years, I began to soften. I became more excepting of others; less judgemental. My approach changed and I decided to start leading by example. The dynamic shifted radically!
I found that people wanted to know more about my vegan lifestyle. They felt unthreatened by it; saw how happy and healthy I was - they were genuinely interested. I am a now vegan chef and cater for retreats and 20 years on I have seen loads of people go vegan as a result of my gentle non-preachy influence.
So, just to balance things out here. Preachy did not work for me - it made people feel threatened. In my experience, people might temporarily go vegan as a result of preachiness, but they rarely stay vegan.
And for me, Non-preachy helps more people to naturally turn vegan - and STAY vegan in the long term (which is the most important thing).
One person's "teacher" is another person's "preacher".
After lectures I've given over the years, I've had people say, "Thank you, teach me more!", while others say, "Don't preach to me!"
Just a quick count... umm... out of my 6 closest friends, one family has gone vegetarian and is looking at vegan (they've got three small kids)the other couple are eating vegan 5 times a week, and vegetarian the other two (and they were sworn carnivores until we went on holiday together), until they can get the hang of all the nutrition requirements and plan to go vegan within the month.
Quite frankly, I think my non preachy way is working really well.
I don't think leaflet handing out will actually change anyone to going vegan, but seeing a vegan 'in action' eating great healthy food, seeing how easy (eek) it is to eat out, and embracing a gentle lifestyle where nothing with a face or heartbeat dies for my dinner - I'm happy with that.
I think being passionate about something does lend itself to being preachy, but isn't the best way.