Incredible India-‘Rich’ cultural heritage, fading moral values

New Delhi January 11, 2011 (Calcutta Tube): ‘Incredible India’ that is how we proudly describe our nation on television networks having millions of viewers. Yes, it is truly incredible in many ways but there is a need to hold back in the brisk life we are witnessing today and make India truly and completely incredible in the eyes of world.

India is a land of various cultures, traditions, religions, and art and so on as people of various religions live together.  Indian society is considered as one of the most cultured in the world. What makes Indian society cultured and popular world-over is the fact that people of various religions here live together like a well-knit family and celebrate festivals with joy and festivity.

This makes India unique in its own way. However nowadays’ Indian culture is facing a serious threat as western culture is fast spreading in India and the essence of Indian culture is slowly fading away. The impact of western culture eating the very vitals of our rich cultural heritage in metro cities and is now slowly spreading to other parts of nation.

Change is inevitable to take place in any society and at anytime but one should strive for a change for good. Indian society is modifying in the name of getting modern at a very fast pace. Impact of westernization can be seen in the changing lifestyles of Indians. Well, there is no harm in adopting lifestyles from other culture but forgetting our own moral values is something wrong and could have a negative impact in the long-run. It is sad to know that today’s generation is bending more towards the west and moving away from its own cultural values.

India is a developing country and the advent of technology is leading our nation towards modernization. Going modern is not bad otherwise; in fact, it symbolizes advancement. Our lives are becoming more independent and self-sufficient. We have innovated ourselves in the field of knowledge, science and technology that pre-existed in our society. Moreover, our lifestyles are becoming broader and hence we are progressing in a positive sense. When the people of the society get enhanced and advanced in all aspects like education, relationships, attitude, thinking it automatically brings in the element of modernization in the society.

Unfortunately, today’s youth get befuddled with modernization and westernization. They are adopting everything from west and label themselves modern. Western culture came in India with a cost. It is okay to say that adopting modern means in living has improvised our society but unfortunately our youth have adopted only the awful side of it. Be it clothing, food, media, fashion, everything seem to have got affected by the advent of western culture. “Western culture has made a great impact over Indian culture and it has its pros and cons too. There are many valuable things that we have adopted in our lifestyles so why do we always mention negatives of it? Even our culture has influenced the western world. The world is shrinking and it is very natural for us to adopt their ways and for them to adopt ours” argues Rajni Arora, a student.

However there is much, more than what meets the eye if one can observe changing trends keenly. The concept of joint families, which is the typical reflection of Indian culture, is decreasing at every step. The love and affection for each other, sharing happiness and sorrows together have been replaced by western thoughts and many describe this change as modernization. People now don’t believe in living together. Nobody bothers anymore to make close connections with their loved ones as they are so busy in their own lives. Even the youngsters desire to stay alone which is totally contradictive to our Indian culture.

Westernization has promoted the single families. Marriages are breaking up at a fast rate. Individuals are living stressful lives as they are more in materialistic world and no one is around to take care of them. Grand parents who demands love and care are being sent to crutches and someone else take care of them. It is very unfortunate that we are running away from our moral values and sanskaars. In today’s scenario, both husband and wife earns so it gives them less time to spend together at home especially with their children. In many cases it becomes common among children to stay away from their parent which is very inopportune.

It is not only the young generation which has got adversely affected by the western thoughts even the parents feel proud in getting their children exposed to western culture. Shockingly, our youth have least knowledge of the culture and values in which they have grown up. They aren’t very keen to learn Sanskrit language rather show great interest towards the other languages like French, German and many other languages.

In India, majority of youth could be spotted following western trends. Wearing skinny jeans, shorts, t-shirts are the first preference over Indian clothes. Youngsters’ finding themselves more in nightlife and drinking alcohol and smoking is the way to lift up their fashion statement. They try to copy almost everything from west which is leading them to an immoral path. They believe to be independent at a very early age.In the world of entertainment, bollywood movies present a reflection of Hollywood. They have left no stone unturned in spoiling the youth by screening sex before marriage, consumption of drugs and alcohols, making fun of relationships. Even the teenagers tend to have pre-martial sex. When it comes to marriage, they believe to choose their own life partners rather going with parent’s choice.

Surprisingly, people from outside approaching India to seek peace by meditation and yoga, which has gained the name all over the world. And we Indians are following them and forgetting our own values. It is good to keep knowledge of other cultures and traditions but we should not get swayed away by western trend and forget our own. We should not forget that world is valuing India for its honesty and rich cultural heritage.

Even though we have accepted modern means of living but we are still Indians from heart. Our lifestyles, eating habits, clothing may have changed but the rich values, which we have received from our culture, are deeply rooted within heart, mind, body and soul. We should feel proud that we are born in the land of rich cultural heritage and it is our moral duty to spread the true meaning of our culture and inherit the same for future generations. (AIP)

Taru Bhatia / Agence India Press

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