Family is a primary group of members in a society, living collectively, in a residence (home).
A nuclear family consists of parents and their offspring sharing a dwelling, food and several common resources concerned for each other.
While the genetic inheritance and blood bonds serve as great anchors, economic and safety factors keep the members together. However, emotional bond is the strongest which binds them as a close-knit unit forever, even when living apart.
Joint or extended family is a social unit of many members, including nuclear family along with blood relatives or kin of three or more generations.
This enlarged version of family comprises grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and niece, for which all the members work typically and live together to share their household duties. Families are legally bound through duties, rights and obligations.
To be mutually beneficial, all the members of family must participate with righteous aims of improving communications amongst them to foster close relations, rising above narrow individual gains.
Good family is due to splendid interaction amongst its members to enjoy each other’s company and spend a lot of time performing amiable functions. A true ‘FAMILY’ is when ‘Father And Mother Intimacy (Interest) Lives for Years.’
Properties of Family
Ordinarily, the family starts with the marriage of a man and a woman. The changes occur in family life through time, tasks, income, successive stages, religious concepts, health, education, political status and many more factors.
The properties in a family differ due to castes, religions, country, financial status, education, health, age group, the presence or absence of children, number of children and many more factors.
During matrimonial ceremony, the spouses generally wear specific attires and perform particular rituals devoted to their religion and social norms. But every family should try to follow basic humanitarian norms which bind all members in a single fabric.
7 Vows with 7 Steps
The bride and bridegroom generally take certain pledges to make their married life strong and committed. The guidelines given through Hinduism are mentioned here:
- We shall give our love, friendship and regards to each other due to mutual emotions.
- We shall share health and wealth.
- We shall live together under all situations of happiness and sorrows.
- We shall remain faithful and committed to each other.
- We shall draw strength from each other to protect and promote ideal principles of family with children.
- We shall embark together as associates on our spiritual journey. We shall promote our moral and spiritual strength for delightful family life.
- We shall work together in carrying out our duties to the society.
As all formal marriages involve one or the other type of mutual commitment, it is therefore necessary for both the life partners to follow certain code of conduct which helps to sustain the bond between them forever.
Mutual Duties of Husband and Wife
Respecting the personal space of every individual is the basic requirement for nurturing healthy and sustainable inter-personal bond. Mutual respect and acceptance should be maintained even during each other’s shortcomings. Confer regards, love and pleasure to each other.
It is solemn duty to live in quietness and peace. Avoid occasion of violent anger and discard. Descend to harsh words, aloofness and any form of abuse.
Mortify pride and strong self centered feelings. They must pray for a humble, meek and quiet spirit because they are not angel for one another but blissful life partners. Control your words, do not speak hurtful and taunting words; rather be calm and rational.
Ask for forgiveness to each other if you act sinfully and confess your faults. Join prayers to God for pardon. Be careful, skillful and diligent to help each other in knowledge and worship. Determine to live together as inherits of Divine Creator and be helper to one another’s soul.
They should co-ordinate in worldly business and estates. Assist each other in charity. Help and comfort one another in safe, disease free happy life and death.
Never think to go apart through divorce. Take full care nature, nurture, nourishment, education and progress of your generation. Pay full regards and reverence to the parents of extended families.
Little adjustment is better than tortuous argument, meaningful reliance is better than meaningless words. Perform collective celebrations of religious festivals so as to strengthen the family relations.
Righteous Qualities to have Virtuous Family Life
Respect for all, duty conscious, truthful and pleasing behavior, rightful high destination, regards for elders, develop faith in spiritual guide and God, pay respect to all religions (sovereignty), help the poor and needy; adopt tolerance, justice, honesty, righteous thinking, self confidence, humility, contentment and tenderness;
earn through self toil, rely on intelligence and skill, sweet conversation, amiable behavior, spend less than earnings, pray for universal peace.
Cultivate common interest, try to set regular time to talk, be accountable to one other, read a religious book together to develop moral equality and refresh daily with God’s word.
Avoid Negative Attitude–Escape from superstitions, ostentations, pretentions, criticism, hatred, cheating, gambling, bribery, vanity, back biting, leg pulling, drinking wine, all types of intoxicants and non-vegetarian diet.
It involves the healthy responsibility of parents for supporting and promoting the physical, social, financial, intellectual and emotional development of child or children from infancy to adulthood. Parents with good skill are rightly considered as best parents.
Mother is the first to adopt healthy child development including the span of pregnancy, prenatal development, infant stage, toddler, adolescent and adulthood.
Authoritative parenting style should take more interest in child’s educational, cultural development, readying child for challenges, appropriate age development activities and tasks for skill development.
The children have to learn self regulation and co-operation; and later on communal culture and truthful communication.
Parent-child relationship has to be delightful and affectionate, desirable behavior, praise, encouragement and benevolent communication. The children ought to pay full regards to parents throughout their life. In India, Mothers day is celebrated on second Sunday of May and Fathers day on third Sunday of June.
Common Problems and Causes of Stress in Family Life
Lack of discipline; faults in communication; lack of respect amongst family members; frequent and general arguments; exhibition of anger, harsh conversation and even violence under certain situations; avoidance and hatred; conflicts among spouses or parents or relatives; conditions of illness, disability or accidents;
intake of smoking and intoxicants; financial problems due to failure in business, damage of property, loss of job etc.; involvement in superstition, ostentation, speculation; condemnation and abusing; confer un-necessary allegation or blames;
one member of couple may think of separation; Infidelity or lack of loyalty; absence of issue or having issue without choice; supporting the parents of husband or wife; loosing contacts with children; share family secrets with neighbors or others.
Suggested Solutions to Family Problems
Always try to avoid miss-concepts stated above; make your objectives on reconciliation; develop winning spirit for complete family; introspect the causes of conflicts to resolve what the issues are, but do not involve anyone for discussion, prevent it from happening in future; consider the every member in the family has a Divine spirit;
respect the old when you are young, help the weak when you are strong, confess the fault when you are wrong, one day in life you will be old, weak and wrong;
remember that your family members are human beings, therefore, do not behold their faults against them; family issues should not be devastating; keep the family as organized unit, staying as a close knit;
try to maintain a proficient balance between work and family time. The prominence of a good family depends on proper organization and not simple perception, not information but arrangement, not in laws but intelligence and mental grasp, not confusion but discipline and management, not insistence but respect, not exploitation but encouragement, not simple contact but true relations, not offering but dedication.
The family members should attend the festivals and celebrations as a complete unit. They can also manage certain ceremonies at their home. Best wishes for successful family life.
Family as a Great Unity
The best part of life is not just surviving, but thriving with passion, style, compassion, generosity, humor and finally with kindness. The love and admiration amongst family members is much more important than health and privilege.
Golden time of our life may not return back forever, but the good relations and valuable memories will stay in the heart forever.
Talk to the grandparents with reverence, talk to the mother lovingly, talk to the father respectfully, talk to the wife or husband truthfully, talk to brothers and sisters with restrain and affection, talk to the children with enthusiasm, talk to the friends freely, talk to the officials politely, talk to the spiritual guide with humility and talk the God silently with full devotion.
Moral Devotion of Family
The virtuous qualities of a splendid family conveys commitment, hard work, initiative, honesty, kindness, leadership, passion, positive thinking and behavior, respect, tolerance, contentment, thrift, initiative and innovation for different tasks. God truly dwells in the home where parents remain happy.
It is better to raise temple in your heart and let your parents stay there to seek you the Devine bliss. There is lot of difference between human being and being human. Every member of the family must follow the virtuous principles of humanity.
Dr. Triloki Nath Chugh Insan, DSS, Sirsa (Haryana)