Do you know the cultural and moral values of the Japanese? In this article, we are going to look at some cultural values that are seen and taught in moral learning classes in Japanese schools and also in everyday life.
Like everyone else, the Japanese are individual, each with their own way of life, hopes and desires. Still, there is a certain popular pattern that can define the Japanese way of life that we are going to cover in this article.
How do the Japanese view their cultural values?
Cultural values are highly regarded in Japanese society, although it is not the total reality, it is much more visible to find these Japanese cultural values being applied in Japan than other countries that have their cultural values. We know this because Japanese people follow the rules to the letter, whether they like it or not.
As the Japanese have suffered many hardships over the years, their history is considered a major factor in the foundation of their values. Some Japanese traditions are based on their deep cultural roots in the Confucianism and in Buddhist and Shinto religions.
Nature is also highly valued in Japanese culture. Core Japanese values are seen through the meticulous care they put into gardening and landscaping.
Japan's cultural values related to behavior
Self-control and self-discipline – The Japanese will try to maintain their self-control and self-discipline no matter what. They are able to hide feelings, emotions and reactions in any critical situation. Self-discipline is the ability to pursue what feels right despite temptations to do otherwise.
endurance and patience are essentials of a good member of society. This means putting aside your own desires and doing what is expected of you. The Japanese tend to try to find an appropriate way to adapt their own desires to the demands of others and thus avoid offending or harming their image and others.
Silence – In Japanese culture, those who speak very little are considered credible. Your non-verbal cues and communication are more important than verbal communication. They believe that indirect language creates social harmony.
The mouth is the cause of calamity.
Think first about how your actions will affect others around you.
- The group is stronger than the individual...;
- Group harmony comes before individual needs;
- Don't stand out, know your place, don't try to change how things are done;
- Form and process are more important than results;
- Harmony is understood to mean avoiding direct confrontations in daily life;
Social hierarchy and respect for age – We owe a lot to our elders. As such, they must be respected, valued and considered first and foremost.
do not question people “above you” (teachers, bosses, politicians, people from certain families and professions, etc.);
show gratitude in everything you do. Despite your own talents and hard work, any success you have would not be possible without the kindness and help of others.
THE family is significantly valued in its social point of view. Family members are always placed before others in society.
THE education is highly valued in Japanese society. This often defines a person's social position and status.
The nail that sticks out is the first to be hammered
Japanese values surrounding the organization
Life is contained in all things, even objects. So use objects in such a way that it meets their full potential.
- Don't waste food;
- Reuse old objects;
- Keep your environment clean and tidy;
All things are connected. A disorganized and disharmonious environment leads to a disorganized mind and conflict.
Subtlety in all forms is harmonious and contributes to the general good. Aesthetic expression, opinions, business – everything must be conducted with discretion and decorum.
Striving for perfection. This value is responsible for Japan's high level of quality and service. The Japanese strive to do everything correctly and perfectly, they know that it is not always possible.
What can we conclude from Japan's cultural values?
There are values that are significantly used to build and maintain a social and business relationship. The Japanese are informed and prepared to apply reciprocity, harmony and organization.
If we are to summarize Japanese cultural values we can list:
- Harmony – 調和 (chōwa);
- collectivity – 集団主義 (shūdanshugi);
- Hierarchy – 序列の秩序 (joretsu no titsujo);
- impermanence – 無常観 (mujōkan);
- Respect for elders – 年配者尊敬 (nempaisha sonkei);
Of course, many other values may end up being left out, as there are thousands of Japanese ideas, codes, lessons and proverbs that we can apply in our lives. What do you think of Japan's cultural values? Do you remember any that weren't mentioned?