Changing Values and Culture Shock

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Changing Values and Culture Shock

“Kids today have no moral values or sense of culture!” – a very common grievance of parents today whose parents -in their time- lamented about their lack of ethics and whose parents in turn complained of their unfavorable attitudes, whose parents again worried about the decline in tradition. This cycle of change in culture dates back even to times when what we now call ‘our culture’ and ‘our ethics’ were not even formed. It is evident that man has constantly felt the breath of changing values and cultural shock breathing down his neck, following him relentlessly over ages and posing him the same apparent danger that we claim to face today. Many have felt it, seen it, hated it and feared it. We have sung about it over ages and many before me have endeavored to write on this very topic. So, I cannot guarantee to offer you more on this subject than you have already heard before. I can only elaborate on what my predecessors had to say and give you my point of view.

Everything around us is changing. Change -as we maintain- is the side effect of growth: growth, which may be physical, mental, economic, social or just plain overall development. But, the change that we talk of has a wider connotation and a much greater role to play in our lives than any other kind of transformation. I would rather term change as both the result and the precursor of growth. Growth depends on man’s willingness to change, to take risks and to dispose of damaging beliefs. The extent of change defines the degree of growth. So this change in culture or values can be either adverse or favorable. Wasn’t the abolition of Sati and Female Infanticide a cultural shock and a change in values to many? But do we categorize this ch...

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...much foreign culture, alienating them from their own traditions? Or the confused youth who throw away their customs and prefer modern ideals? What is to be done? Should we sit back and watch our tree uproot it self and fall to decay? Or should we act and once and stop all development and pull our society down? Some people write to make you think. Some write to make you act. But this essay was written to make you think before you act. Wherever you are hold firm to your ideals. If you are away from your land, then remember who you represent and maintain your traditions. At home keep the national spirit alive while seeking intellectual, social, economic and overall growth. The world and times are changing and values will continue to change and cultural shocks will persist, but it is up to us to decide what it is we wish to change and what it is we would die defending.
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