Suffering under peer pressure? || IIT Bombay (2022)

May 5, 2022 | Acharya Prashant

Questioner (Q): Man is typically a social animal who seeks to coexist with the society around him. I am a vegan but many people around me are not, and that creates a difficulty for me. I want to speak out my thoughts on animal cruelty and get into animal activism, but as I am already perceived as an outcast by friends and family, there is fear that if I honestly express myself, I may move even farther away from being accepted by them. This fear stops me from doing what I really want to do. How can I be free of this fear?

Acharya Prashant (AP): Let me understand what you are saying. You are saying you love animal activism but you cannot openly speak of it because of peer pressure. Is that what you are saying?

Q: If I express my thoughts and get into animal rights activism, I am afraid that I will be judged even more because I am not doing the kind of activities that my peers are into. That fear stops me from moving forward.

AP: See, this is the typical nature of the ego mind: it wants to change things with the things remaining within its old unchanged structure or paradigm.

Let me explain. So, you have a structure, and what is that structure? You are there and you are surrounded by your peers, your friends, your family, your social media network. That is what surrounds you, right? Now, you want to bring about a change. What is the change you want to bring about? In the middle of this structure, there is you—you who is not an animal activist currently, right? You want to change the center. You say, “I am not an animal activist, but I think it is the right thing to do. So, I will be an animal activist. I will change. I will change the center.”


Acharya Prashant is an emerging champion of socio-spiritual awakening in the world today. An alumnus of IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad, and a former Civil Services officer, Acharya Prashant is an acclaimed Speaker, Vedanta Teacher and author of over 50 books. Apart from that he wears various hats: a veganism promoter, an environmental activist, a science activist, a campaigner against superstition, and a champion of essential human freedom. Know More