Lessons to be taught and lived
There are many more resources available to families today than there were when the UAE was born, but this can be as disorienting for children as it is liberating for their parents. At the nearest mall, one will likely share the car park with teenagers driving their own cars to the movie theatre. At the restaurants inside, nannies share the burden of supervising and caring for children. Parents should not be criticised for wanting the best for their children, or for receiving additional help in tending to a young child's constant need for supervision. But there are certain lessons that are best taught to children by parents or by their extended families and communities - the lessons enumerated by Sheikh Humaid among them. Sheikh Humaid, a member of the UAE Supreme Council, stressed that teaching morality should be one of the top priorities for the Ministry of Education. While he is correct, morality and good behaviour should be taught, they are best emulated. This is part of the "work" that Sheikh Humaid mentioned. A society is energised by the dialogue - and at times, tension - between generations. As Ms Khaled wrote: "While we take pride in and honour our traditions and culture, culture moves on; it's not static. Perhaps some of today's trends will become tomorrow's traditions." She is right. But a healthy respect for tradition must also be timeless.
Published: March 15, 2010 04:00 AM