Role of Family in Human Values

A family is a social institution with the bond of common belief, religion, customs, culture, language and way of life. It carries on the heritage and traditions as legacies from the earlier generation to the next generation. Child Rearing Practices (CRP) adopted by parents shapes the child’s personality both consciously and subconsciously. A child from a family acquires self-knowledge, self-confidence, self-satisfaction, self-worth, and the capacity for self-sacrifice. They realise themselves as competent to show kindness, friendship, generosity, compassion, tolerance, responsibility and service to society.

Techniques of value inculcation by family

  • Family is the first informal agency for socialisation. It is said that family is the first school and mother is the first teacher.
  • The family shapes a child’s attitude toward people and society, assists in mental development and supports the child’s goals and values.
  • Values formation is very high through family because of high emotional attachment.
  • Private relation – Contact comfort studies– Those baby monkeys who stick to their mother’s belly are more Emotionally secure and confident; Attitude of sharing- among siblings and cousins.
  • Child-rearing practices– democratic and authoritative; children raised authoritatively will show less concern for democratic values.
  • Role modelling– Children subconsciously and consciously learn from their parent’s behaviour. Gandhiji said he knew the technique of Satyagraha and fasting from his mother and wife, respectively.
  • Observational learning – children observe the behaviour of their parents and other family members.
  • Values of service class and business class.
  • Orthodox versus liberal families.
  • Unaware versus aware families.
  • Patriarch versus matriarch families.

Strengths of the family for value inculcation:

  1. It is the first place of socialisation
  2. Family is forever
  3. Person spends the highest time in the family in general.
  4. Family consists of diverse people.
  5. Presence of trust among the members.
  6. Family can teach whatever it wants because the child is like a blank slate.
  7. It uses both hard and soft tools of socialisation.
  8. It can observe progress minutely.

Problems in the Role of Family

  • It can promote regressive and unjust values ex. Casteism, patriarchal, orthodoxy etc.
  • Different members of the family may impart conflicting values (Papa- aggressive values, Mom- unassertive)
  • Family often fails to practice what it preaches (bol de papa ghar pr nhi h, and then preaching honesty).
  • Changing family structure now in nuclear families, family members barely spend time together.
  • Prevalence of materialistic values like competition, rather than care, love etc.
  • It imposes values on children irrespective of their choices/inadequate autonomy.

Methods of promoting values in Family

  • Promoting fundamental values such as tolerance, love, sympathy, nonviolence, sympathy, and companionship, as well as Dharma.
  • Positive Attitude and Constructive Actions: Suppressing negative actions while enhancing positive ones.
  • Family peace and harmony: To eliminate dominance, we must ensure family peace and harmony.
  • Improving social life and equality through cleanliness, a good home environment, hygiene, and good health.
  • Food is shared and eaten together.
  • Gentleness, good manners, cooperation, and respect for women and elders.
  • Offering prayers to one’s god and respecting the beliefs of others.
  • Participating in and enjoying family gatherings.

An ideal society promotes opportunity-

  • To each individual’s physical, intellectual, and moral development.
  • To discover our potential.
  • To mould people’s opinions, beliefs, morals, and ideals.
  • To instil values such as hard work, honesty, tolerance, national integration, secularisation, and responsibility.
  • To reject negative values such as dowry, Casteism, communalism, alcoholism, and drug use.
  • To improve the quality of life by ignoring social tensions, unrest, prejudices, and other factors.
  • To ensure justice and equality for the nameless, faceless, and voiceless.
  • To cultivate individual and group discipline.
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