Call Any Vegetable: Philosophy and Language
1. Vegging out: This means to relax without any intellectual stimulation or demands. People usually use it to describe much of their television consumption. Since humans are not vegetables, such descriptions are not apt, however intellectually and spiritually impoverished one might be in such a state. Moreover, why would a human want to engage in activities that reduce him or her to the level of a vegetable? Recreation is one thing; vegetating is something else.
2. Vegetative state. This is used to refer to certain conditions in which a human being is severely compromised with respect to mental abilities. The term is never appropriately applied to humans, though, since human beings never cease to be humans to become vegetables. The human essence or substance remains, however damaged that poor human may be. Therefore, human beings should never be considered vegetative and should always be treated with dignity. This is because they are made in God's image and likeness--something not reducible to a level of functioning.