03.07.2022 Feature Article

Traditions: a blessing or a curse?

Traditions: a blessing or a curse?
03.07.2022 LISTEN

Humans are social and cultural creatures depending on others for their well-being visible in times e.g. pandemics.

Traditions give humans directions and comfort, often a sense of life. They are embedded in economic and political structures never the same at all times. Based on religious beliefs and inherited from generations long gone live on in the hearts of people and their societies.

Traditions are constantly on the move even as it takes a long time to abolish, modernize or get them replaced altogether by newly developed traditions pushing their ways through the crowd of emotions, need for orientation, and desire for security and certainty.

Traditions hold progressive changes in society down and in check. Progress is only possible when people and society are ready to move forward. The strings attached to the past, of traditions to the future, make the future blossom impossible but remain a patchwork a building site waiting eagerly for repair after repair.

Traditions are in the framework of political and social change a stabilizing factor, the emotional glue holding people together as a people, as a nation on the move in time and space. Time means constant change and constant change means finding and inventing the best working traditions of the past in new clothes and designing new traditions supporting the move into a better future for society.

Traditions face challenges and clashes in societies welcoming migrants from different parts of the world and their expectations. As traditions depend on religious beliefs and the location in times of history blending them into a new common tradition is not always the best way forward, it does not come out of the heartland of the people but rather remains an artificial habit forced onto them.

Traditions like "The place for the wife is home" or asking parents for permission to get married must constantly be reviewed under the premises of historic progress. Fundamental values humans and society depend on like "You should not ly, cheat, murder, honor others as you want to be honored, etc." are in most cases universal values as not attached to time, space, or religious beliefs. Others were created by societies in their own time and regional settings. Outsiders might argue against them by force and by might but can only see change when the change comes truly from within the people and society.

To keep traditions alive in their core values or their shapes and sizes only benefits society and mankind when the progress wanted does not stand in its way. On this note, traditions are as much a blessing as they are a curse.

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