I am told of a mother with her daughter who went shopping and there were some freebies being given to families, but only one freebie for each family. The mother told her daughter, “You are not my daughter, go collect the freebie!” So the mother-and-daughter family unit ended up with two freebies.
On the way out, the daughter turned to her mum and asked, “Am I your daughter now?”
A true event, but no laughing matter!
As someone has remarked, values are caught, not taught. And parents especially carry the primary burden in inculcating values and virtues in their children.
The Chinese say that we can look at the character of a kid at three years old and have a fairly good sense how he/she will be as an adult. And psychologists have said that children are very much formed in their attitudes and beliefs for life by the time they are four – which is even before the kids turn up in kindergarten!
This blog starts what I hope will be at least a weekly blog on Honour in its two meanings of:
- Being people who honour our word. We keep promises. We are reliable and trustworty. Think of this in our personal lives: We usually decide who we want to have as friends according to whether we can trust them to look out for us and to keep secrets. In other words, are they reliable? Are they people of character? This forms the basis of long-term relationships. So being known to honour our word is a critical first step to getting people to trust us and to start a long-term business or personal relationship with us.
- Being people who honour each other. By honouring each other, it means we respect each other as persons who have the right to be themselves. But as members of a society, it also means that our right to be ourselves can only be to the extent that we do not undermine society. So we should not be trading insults, imposing our views on others, creating avoidable racial or religious disharmony. Our interchanges should edify character, develop trust, build relationship, strengthen society, uphold community, evoke loyalty to the country, honour our elders, build the future, and enhance Singapore’s resilience and capacity to succeed? Or our remarks should at least not detract from one or more of these outcomes.
But what we would like to do is to also share your thoughts and anecdotes on Honour. We want to address the issues of the day and ask that you also help to enrich our lives with better ways of conducting ourselves and encouraging each other. So if you have any ideas you wish to share or uplifting stories to tell, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. In so doing, you agree to let us have the discretion to decide whether to publish what you write and to do so in full or in modified form, and if we were to publish your input, it will be as a public good with no payment to you.
Let us Honour Singapore….our HOME, WHERE WE HAVE HOpe and MEmory