Focus 2013 – Development of Values Among Youth

Various articles, interviews and tweets have been come after the incident of the 23 year old young girl’s gruesome rape in Delhi. This is without doubt a dastardly crime and rapists must be punished with an iron hand.

An interesting post on the subject came in Firstpost – titled “Why 2013 should be made the year of the boy-child” . The author has brought about a few points about how the male child needs to be trained to respect women from childhood. This is true.

However, by and large, families teach children to respect women in the childhood. The issue comes up when they reach adolescence and move towards youth. In childhood, impressions are formed but the opinions are really forumaled during youth. It is in this age that young boys and men make opinions about everything in life. They are very largely influenced by the quality of the discourse that surrounds them, the company they keep including friends and peers, the books they read, the films they see, the sites they watch on the internet and the heroes they try to emulate. It is probably here that the society is failing.

Whether youth power is a positive or a negative depends on what the core content within them is. With positive and higher goals, they can be a huge asset to a country and with negative goals can create mayhem and anarchy. Atleast 2 of the rapists who are accused seem to be coming from poor families whose parents seem to have a high value for human life. They have sought death sentence for their own children. One of the accused rapists is a boy-youth who is just a few months to reach 18 years. Therefore, there seems to be a bigger issue at hand.

For example, a recent news item regarding drug abuse across the country esp those near the borders is a matter of concern. http://www.deccanherald.com/content/10456/punjabs-bitter-harvest.html

While the above article highlights Punjab, the same is true about many border states where drug trafficking is common and many cities which form the markets for the drug users.

The old saying goes, ” A persons character is determined by the company he/she keeps”. The importance of Satsangati ( good company ) in such an age cannot be underestimated. The government must be supporting organizations which are working towards building character among the youth. If the governments of the land are a non-player, the people at large must support organizations that are working towards inculcating patriotic values among the youth, support organizations that spread value based education.

Ofcourse strong laws are a detterent against crimes, but the guarantee of long-term safety and progress of a nation comes from youth who not just educated to earn but educated to know about what our country stands for, confident and equipped with values. One of the biggest values that Bharat has stood for is respect for womenhood. “yatra nAryastu poojyante, ramante tatra devataaH” ( Where the women is respected, the devas reside there ). We must introspect why this aspect of our culture is fading. If we lose this aspect of our culture, then we would be putting our ancestors to shame.

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16 thoughts on “Focus 2013 – Development of Values Among Youth

  1. Confused Krishna Bhakta in Canada

    I am a 2nd generation Desi-Canadian born to parents from India. I visit the US frequently and this, “In the contrast, the Western world, represented by USA is supposed to be an open society with a tight crime control system and yet on the face of it, the type of sexual crimes being committed there are heinous. ” simply is not true if you are comparing to the sexual crimes being committed in India, they are of about equally horrific.

    I mentioned elsewhere that for the past 30 years violent crime in the USA has been steadily decreasing while the percentage of non-married live-in partnerships have been steadily increasing.

    I agree with Theuntoldtheunsaid. Sexuality is severely suppressed in India and it manifests itself in perverted ways. I also partake in Sat Sangas but I have never heard any of the Sat Sangis give a class on healthy sexuality. The issue is completely ignored. At most they might talk about “grihasta life” (meaning marriage and family) but that doesn’t happen for most of us until we are already in our mid-20s or 30s. In the meantime we pass many years (from puberty til marriage) wherein we are awakening sexually. What to do about that?

    Dating is frowned upon if not outright culturally forbidden in many areas of India, even for grown adults in college and beyond.

    Some of this is covered in this article written by an American born Hindu who lived in India
    http://www.elephantjournal.com/2012/04/dont-copy-india-toongi-dasi/

    Reply
    1. skandaveera

      Crime numbers in US are carefully manipulated and one can argue many ways. First, crime in general has several arguments – why can you not attribute falling crime rate in US to increasing Asian population? While “family” institution is mostly broken, the Asian families in US largely remain intact.

      Secondly and more relevant to this topic, rape in US is way, way higher than in Asian countries including India. That is a direct result of weak family system.

      As for pre or extra marital relations, their biggest challenge to society is the challenge of commitment and the way it breaks the foundation block of the society – family.

      In India, late marriage is primarily a result of increasing careerism and not proportionally increasing career opportunity. The fear of marriage commitment is an American fad imported to India of late, and is more of a problem than anything. In not so well-to-do families, marriage still happens at smaller ages and hence “repression” if you call it, is a problem of those careerists.

      Yes, dating is culturally incompatible in India and the onus is on you to demonstrate otherwise if you disagree. Ultimately it is not a virtue to date several individuals and marry one. It is a fateful thing to do in the absence of a well cultured society that avoids your hit and trials.

      Before raising questions like this, one needs to understand not merely what “happens in India”, but what is the Indian outlook to these issues. You are trying to superimpose western definitions on India, which is what Indians have a problem with.

      Reply
      1. Confused Krishna Bhakta in Canada

        “First, crime in general has several arguments – why can you not attribute falling crime rate in US to increasing Asian population?”

        South and East Asians combined comprise less than 7% of the total US population.

        “While “family” institution is mostly broken, the Asian families in US largely remain intact.”

        What would this have to do with the US crime rate rising or falling?

        “Secondly and more relevant to this topic, rape in US is way, way higher than in Asian countries including India.”

        Where are the statistics for that and how do you account for unreported rapes, including those that happen amongst family members (child molestation)?

        Rape statistics should also account for a certain number of false reports also, so again, how would you account for this?

        “Before raising questions like this, one needs to understand not merely what “happens in India”, but what is the Indian outlook to these issues.”

        There is no one monolithic Indian outlook on relationships. My partner and I experienced a wide variety of reactions to our relationship when we recently went to India, visited my family and friends and travelled extensively across the country.

        I conversed with hundreds of people and some of them are dating. We even double dated with some couples, great fun. Back in Canada I’ve introduced several people to Hinduism via dating them.

      2. skandaveera

        Asian population being around 5% is hardly a point. Decline in crime as you mention, is also gradual, and so is the increase in Asian population and their effect on the outlook to life in US. On one hand you talk of decades of observation and on the other hand you are talking of current numbers of Asians.

        As for rape or crime, I am talking with the same published stats you are talking of. You were not talking of unreported crime in US either, correct? So lets stick to the topic without hairsplitting.

        “What would this have to do with the US crime rate rising or falling?”

        For that you need to understand crime-social stability-social morality underpinnings. How US had invested in understanding the limitations of its broken society and raising burden on state to control the problems in society, how it had over time tried to cope up with the problem by overtly downplaying but covertly encouraging Asian life principles to retard the fall of its society, is something you need to study. There is no sudden fit of police action that got crime under control in US. In fact during recession it had even reduced police forces – still if crime could be kept under decent limits, the credit goes to the long term planning done by the state – which is totally lacking in India.

        “There is no one monolithic Indian outlook on relationships. ”

        You are confused between individual opinions of Indians and *Indian outlook*. Indian outlook is what its ethos comprise, and what concepts like dating are from that viewpoint. Individual reactions are always diverse, which is not a point of discussion. Society’s overall outlook
        is shaped over centuries, and based on a lot of factors.

      3. Confused Krishna Bhakta in Canada

        “On one hand you talk of decades of observation and on the other hand you are talking of current numbers of Asians. ”

        No. It was you who brought up the subject of Asians in the USA and tried to tie it to the decrease in crime rate.

        You keep referencing “broken families” as a cause for crime in the USA so I am assuming you are under the impression that because divorce rate is high in the US compared to India, that the neighborhoods, towns, suburbs and every inch of the cities and even rural areas are dangerous? From where you would have gleaned this wrong impression?

        Or perhaps you are referencing the inner city urban ghettos, such as those in Chicago and Detroit, that are in fact the REAL high crime areas. Those areas are comprised mostly, if not entirely by a certain segment of African Americans who, due to ignorance, poverty, lethargy and a whole host of personal issues have created a sub-culture wherein decade after decade, generation after generation, their children are born into complete dysfunction.

        This situations is by no means representative of all African Americans, nor is it representative of the entire United States. Throughout the US’s towns, suburbs, cities and rural areas you will meet a great many children of divorced parents or even parents that were never married, who are not joining gangs and committing crimes but are behaving as fully functional law abiding citizens. That is because the level of ignorance and dysfunction that is seen in the inner city ghettos is not at all widespread in the US.

        I have travelled the length and breadth of the US, as well as lived there for some time in different areas and I have never once felt unsafe or bothered like I have in India. And that is EVEN in the inner city.

        As far as “Asian values” yes there are some very good things that non-Asians can learn from them. There are also some bad things. A wise person takes the good from any culture and leaves behind the bad. But I don’t see Asians, either South or East, doing much to share what are the good aspects of their cultures with non-Asians here in Canada or the USA.

        I do what I can. I told you that through dating non-Indians I have turned many people on to Hinduism.

        Do you live in US or Cananda? If so, what are YOU doing to share the good parts of Indian culture with non-Indians? If you don’t live here but have family or friends that do, what are THEY doing to share the goods things about Indian culture with Americans or Canadians?

      4. skandaveera

        “No. It was you who brought up the subject of Asians in the USA and tried to tie it to the decrease in crime rate.”

        Of course I did – my point was you should talk of rise or fall in both and not one for numbers and one for gradient.

        “You keep referencing “broken families” as a cause for crime in the USA so I am assuming you are under the impression that because divorce rate is high in the US compared to India, that the neighborhoods, towns, suburbs and every inch of the cities and even rural areas are dangerous?”

        I understand the overall distribution of crime incidence in US. But in all fairness, since the main article and topic is about India, there is no need for a more elaborate discussion on crime in US. Just to clarify, by “broken family” I do not mean divorce alone – it is about the commitment of the society to the institution called family and household. That overall, becomes the building block for communities, and communities the building blocks of society. Where you do not have both these levels, social fabric will be pretty weak. Social self-regulation comes from that fabric.

        As for sharing of values *at the private level*, it is not a new phenomenon. Whether it was Vivekananda or Yogananda or Sivaya Subramaniya Swamy (Hinduism Today) or HAF and many other organizations today, they do their bit to share what they think is good in their system. But as a matter of fact, the physically strong society wants to believe its philosophy and religion are superior and shows the tendency to foist them over others. And for that tendencey, and for the amount of anti-Hindu propaganda US-sponsored church does in India and US, there is nothing surprising that I do not have my sympathies with US. But at the socio-political level, what is happening today is not sharing of good. Their bad is coming to us (like fallen values and outdated technology), and our good is going to them (right from thorium-rich sand to philosophical knowledge) – so if you wake up to this, think what should be done about it. Of course, the blame again goes to weak Indian state and strong state in US, so lets not get stuck on that point.

      5. Confused Krishna Bhakta in Canada

        “And for that tendencey, and for the amount of anti-Hindu propaganda US-sponsored church does in India and US, there is nothing surprising that I do not have my sympathies with US. But at the socio-political level, what is happening today is not sharing of good. Their bad is coming to us (like fallen values and outdated technology), and our good is going to them (right from thorium-rich sand to philosophical knowledge) – so if you wake up to this, think what should be done about it. Of course, the blame again goes to weak Indian state and strong state in US, so lets not get stuck on that point.”

        Actually we have some bad coming from India too. In Canada the Punjabi Sikh community (and some Hindus) has introduced sex selective abortion because of their fetish for sons and laws had to be drawn up in both Canada and the UK over this issue. Desi Muslims have ghettoized themselves in the UK which has created social problems. Male Indian immigrants to the US have a horrible reputation for “eve-teasing” even here!!! and there have been issues with forced (what they call “arranged”) marriage in the UK and laws are in the making to prevent that.

        At the same time while there are also some negative aspects of globalization and Western influence in India there has been some very positive things too.

        The knife cuts both ways.

      6. skandaveera

        “Actually we have some bad coming from India too. In Canada the Punjabi Sikh community (and some Hindus) has introduced sex ”

        There is nothing in absolute terms – there is some bad coming from Asia to West, and some good coming the other way round. Examples can be many – but by proportion the amount of bad coming to Asia from the west and the amount of good going the other way is proportionally huge, huge. And it is quite logical – water naturally flows downslope. So civilizational, philosophical and moral things go from place that has more to what has less. And in this encounter the more civilized societies pick up the forceful and shortsighted practices of the less civilized one. Over centuries this is what happened to India. The overall process still remains the same – civilizing of the west and undoing civilization in Asia.

        Child sex ratio is another complex topic and we need to understand many factors come together. Where situation of women deteriorates because of undoing of civilization, the natual preference would be a male child. That is not necessarily because male child is liked more, but simply because male child is deemed safer. The bigger reason is population control. In the last thirty years, there is a steep fall of CSR in two countries that went about population control – China and India. There are several other factors. The value-neutral and sectarian way of Indian leadership’s awareness campaigns about population control happens to not address any of the problems. It is more a problem in India than a *bad of India*.

  2. bhoga rao pappu

    It is a good perspective given about how to address the issue at hand, which is not just an incident out of context, but a mindset being moulded by every player in the society such as:
    1. government depending on monetary benefits of license fees on tobacco and liquor, censor boards encouraging constantly tempting movies, licensing pubs and other such tempations,
    2. Movies built on only topic but love, misnomer for lust; encouraging untraditional and violent ideas of eloping, killing, projecting saddistic and torturing attitudes in the lead characters.
    3. No other higher goals set among intellectual families except studying for the sake of going abroad or if possible to work here for merely making, if not minting, money

    BTW, there is a typo in the aapta-vaakyam. It should be: “yatra nAryastu poojyante, ramante tatra devataaH” meaning wherever women are worshipped, in other words treated with respect, there gods enjoy (or are happy – ramante).

    Good article.

    Reply
  3. theuntoldtheunsaid

    This issue is not about respect for women, this issue feeds on a basic animal instinct…lust. India is a closeted society, sexually frustrated as expressing sexual desire in the course of life is almost taboo. Don’t be fooled into thinking that it is only the girl/woman who is defiled.

    Child abuse in India is gargantuan and both the unsuspecting young boys and girls are prey to those their parents trust most. The death penalty and speedy justice are the only two factors that can prove a strong deterrent, all else will fail.

    Reply
    1. arisebharat Post author

      For a country of 1.3 Billion, the safety of people is ensured by positive samskaras. Laws are definitely important and they will help in reduction of crime bu the guarantee to safety is the family and organization of youth with samskars.
      India is not a closeted society . Fulfilling of desires is incorporated as part of the Chaturvidha Purusharthas – Dharma Artha Kaama Moksha. Fulfilment of Artha ( wealth) and KAma ( Desire ) have their rightful place in our society. The issue is of communicating this.

      In the contrast, the Western world, represented by USA is supposed to be an open society with a tight crime control system and yet on the face of it, the type of sexual crimes being committed there are heinous.

      Law and Sanskars have to go hand in hand to have a balanced society.

      Reply
      1. theuntoldtheunsaid

        Yes, samskaras are important…no doubt about that…and most indian families are great at instilling samskaras since a new child is born, yet we see such heinous crimes being committed.

        I agree with you that our ancient culture had a place for fulfilling desires, but common day society has been misled by years of rule of prudish foreign powers, stripping our original culture for a toxic cocktail which we consume on a regular basis.

        I beg to differ on your assessment of USA or western society. Crimes committed in the west have a greater chance of the perpetrator being caught and brought to justice, this is a stark contrast from our indian system where there is no accountability.

  4. Chandra Singaiahgari

    I completely agree with your thoughts. If we consider films alone, which is one of the big influencers on youth today, for one Raju Hirani there are 100 Mahesh Bhatts to influence youth in a negative way….so is the case with writers, adfilm makers and other creative media who portray woman nothing more than an object!! Either these stupid ppl should change themselves or they should be forced to….to make this great country a better place to live!!!

    Reply
    1. theuntoldtheunsaid

      Actually this is the type of thought process that has led us here. We indians want to keep sex under wraps. A nation of a billion plus people doesn’t happen without sex.

      We have created a society of frustrated, twisted, rabidly horny people with no outlet for their sexual urges. So these wild animals then seek to satisfy their lust by child abuse, rape and other dastardly acts. We need to be more open and tolerant as a society, we need to punish rape, child abuse by the death penalty and fast track courts….only this can possibly provide a deterrent.

      Reply

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