KVE301/KVE401 Universal Human Values and Professional Ethics
Chapter 8: Harmony in Family – Understanding Values in Human Relationships
“Affection is the feeling of being related to the other.”
Affection comes when I recognize that we both want to make each other happy and both of us are similar. Then for the first time, I feel that I am related to the other that the other is a relative of mine. This feeling is called affection.
The feeling of affection comes only if trust and respect are already ensured. Without trust and respect, you feel the other is trying to make you unhappy, does not wish well for you and hence you can never feel affection for him/her. You always see the other as being in opposition. And that is why today in the family, you find that people have been living together for years and years and still don’t feel related to each other, because that basic trust and respect are missing.
“The feeling of Care is the feeling to nurture and protect the body of our relative.”
Or in other words, a state of mind in which one is troubled; worry, anxiety or concern is called care. Care is level of active concern, or lack of negligence, towards avoidance of possible dangers, mistakes, pitfalls, and risks, demanded of a party as a duty or legal obligation.
We understand a human being as a coexistence of the self (‘I’) and the body, and the body is an instrument of ‘I’. Based on this understanding, we take the responsibility of nurturing and protecting the body of our relatives.
“The feeling of ensuring right understanding and feelings in the other (my relative) is called Guidance.”
We understand the need of self (‘I’) for the right understanding and feelings. We also understand that the other is similar to me in his/her faculty of natural acceptance, the desire of wanting continuous happiness, and the program of living in harmony at all four levels. The other is also similar to me in the potential of desire, thoughts, and expectation.
“The feeling of acceptance of excellence in the other is called Reverence.”
We understand that we aspire for continuous happiness and to realize it, we have to understand harmony at all the levels of our living and live accordingly. When we see that the other has achieved this excellence- which means to understand and to live in harmony at all the levels of living ensuring continuity of happiness, we have a feeling of reverence for him/her. This feeling of accepting the excellence in the other is called reverence.
Each one of us wants to live with continuous happiness and prosperity. Each one of us has the similar faculty of natural acceptance, has the same goal and program and we have the same potential to realize this.
“Glory is the feeling for someone who has made efforts for excellence.”
We find that there have been people in history, or even around us, who are investing their time, energy, and their belongings to achieve excellence (to understand and to live in harmony at all levels of living ensuring continuity of happiness), to make others excellent. This gives us a feeling of glory for them.
We understand that each one has the goal of continuous happiness and prosperity. Each one of us has to work towards increasing our competence to realize our intention and in this process, we are helped and guided by others that have the right understanding. When we understand this and begin to recognize the feeling in ourselves, we feel gratitude in our relationship.
“Gratitude is the feeling of acceptance for those who have made efforts for my excellence.”
Today, we find that generally what we call ‘gratitude’ is a feeling coming out of assistance at the level of physical facilities. This feeling is short-lived since the happiness we get from the right understanding is permanent.
Gratitude is an emotion that occurs after people receive help, depending on how they interpret the situation. Specifically, gratitude is experienced if people perceive the help they receive as:
- Valuable to them
- Costly to their benefactor
- Given by the benefactor with benevolent intentions (rather than ulterior motives)
“Love is the emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. In other words, love is a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, as for a parent, child, or friend.”
In a philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of the human kindness, compassion, and affection. In a religious context, love is not just a virtue, but the basis for all beings (“God is love”), and the foundation for all divine law (Golden Rule).
The word love can refer to a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes, ranging from generic pleasure (“I loved that meal”) to intense interpersonal attraction (“I love my wife”). “Love” can also refer specifically to the passionate desire and intimacy of romantic love, to the sexual love of eros (cf. Greek words for love), to the emotional closeness of familial love, or to the platonic love that defines friendship, to the profound oneness or devotion of religious love. This diversity of uses and meanings, combined with the complexity of the feelings involved, makes love unusually difficult to consistently define, even compared to other emotional states.
This feeling or value is also called the complete value since this is the feeling of relatedness to all human beings. It starts with identifying that one is related to the other human being (the feeling of affection) and it slowly expands to the feeling of being related to all human beings. The feeling of love leads to an undivided society, it starts from a family and slowly expands to the world family in the form of love.
Harmony from Family to World Family: Undivided Society
Justice (recognition of feelings in a relationship, its fulfillment, evaluation leading to mutual happiness) starts from the family and slowly expands to the world family. In family, we learn to recognize relationships, definite feelings, or values and learn how to fulfill them. If we do not understand the values in relationships, we are governed by our petty prejudices and conditionings. This leads to a fragmented society while our natural acceptance is for an undivided society and universal human order.
Undivided society (Akhanda Samaja) – feeling of being related to every human being.
The feeling of being related to every human being leads to our participation in an undivided society (Akhanda Samaja). With the understanding of values in human relationships, we are able to recognize the connectedness with every individual correctly and fulfill it. When we understand the value in relationship with other units in nature too, we are able to recognize our connectedness with them and fulfill it. This enables us to participate in the universal human order (Sarvabhaum Vyavastha).