KVE301/KVE401 Universal Human Values and Professional Ethics
Chapter 1: Understanding Value Education
Need for Value Education
- Correct identification of our aspirations. The subject which enables us to understand ‘what is valuable’ for human happiness is called ‘Value Education’. Thus, Value Education enables us to understand our needs and visualize our goals correctly, and also indicate the direction for their fulfillment. It also helps to remove our confusion and contradictions and bring harmony at all levels.
- Understanding universal human values to fulfill our aspirations in continuity. Values form the basis for all our thoughts, behaviors, and actions. Once we know what is valuable to us, these values become the basis, the anchor for our actions. We also need to understand the universality of various human values, because only then we can have a definite and common program for value education. Then only we can be assured of a happy and harmonious human society.
- Complementarity of values and skills. To fulfill our aspirations both values and skills are necessary. When we identify and set the right goals and produced them in the right direction. This is known as the value domain, the domain of wisdom, and when we learn and practice to actualize this goal to develop the techniques to make this happen in real life, in various dimensions of human endeavor (struggle). This is known as the domain of skills.
Hence, there is an essential complementarity between values and skills for the success of any human endeavor.
For example, I want to lead a healthy life. Only wishing for good health will not help me keep my body fit and healthy and without having understood the meaning of health, I will not be able to choose things correctly to keep my body fit and healthy.
- Evaluation of our beliefs. Each one of us believes in certain things and we base our values on these beliefs, be they false or true which may or may not be true in reality. These beliefs come to us from what we read, see, hear, what our parents tell us, our friends talk about, what the magazines talk of, what we see on TV, etc. Value Education helps us to evaluate our beliefs and assumed values.
- Technology and human values. The present education system has become largely skill-based. The prime emphasis is on science and technology. However, science and technology can only help to provide the means to achieve what is considered valuable. It is not within the scope of science and technology to provide the competence of deciding what really is valuable.
Value Education is a crucial missing link in the present education system. Because of this deficiency, most of our efforts may prove to be counterproductive and serious crises at the individual, societal and environmental level are manifesting.
Hence, there is a strong need to rectify this situation.