Reason Clash with Blind Obedience-Threat to Family Unity



The age of reason is the age where people distinguish between right and wrong through the assessment of logical reasons. This is the age of the younger generation. The age of blind obedience is the age where no one questioned authority. People were told to do as they are told without questioning, scrutiny or critical thinking. Children born in this age are not allowed to think for themselves. They are told to obey authority out of respect or fear. This age is the age of our fathers.

Many Parents today are products of the age of blind obedience. Parents born into this age demand blind obedience from their children just like their fathers. They practice blind obedience. And have adopted certain beliefs, values and traditions that they can barely defend. These beliefs which they have ingrained overtime has now become family untouchable sacred cows. And these sacred cows threaten family unity.

A sacred cow is any belief, ideology or concepts considered to be exempted from criticism, any form of questioning or open for negotiation. Children who grew in the age of blind obedience have dragged some of the sacred cows into their own families. But rather than a blind or fearful compliance from their children, they are facing a lot of thought-provoking questions.

Children of today’s parents are asking question and seeking reasons why they should obey certain believes. These children who now question authority are children of the age of reasoning. When a family comprises parents from the age of blind obedience and children from the age of reasoning conflict is inevitable. Children of this age are demanding reasons why they should adopt certain sacred cows.

They are questioning existing beliefs and reassessing its relevance in their lives. If a belief does not withstand critical scrutiny, they will violate it. The violation of certain belief will lead to conflict. The presence of conflict break family unity. And the absence of family unity destroys the long-term preservation of wealth. If parents must maintain the peace in their families and preserve wealth for many generations. They must reassess inherited sacred cows or find convincing reasons for children in the age of reasoning.

There are three major areas where family sacred cows cause conflict the most. These three areas are the choice of career, the choice of whether to join the family business or not, and the choice of who to marry.

When conflict results in these areas it is usually because parents have certain beliefs and values that are in misalignment with the beliefs of their children. If children are convinced parents beliefs are in their best interest, they will accept it otherwise they will violate it. When children reject certain beliefs parents should find convincing reasons, motivation and inspiration and not use force.

Any Imposed beliefs and values will not stand the test of time. Without personal conviction every belief and values will be violated. For example, certain parents impose a particular career path on their children for reasons best known to them. These reasons are usually misguided and not in the best interest of their children. Children who enter imposed career paths end up experiencing frustration. Some struggle through school only to abandon these careers in the latter part of their lives. The conflict of career choice can affect the relationship between parents and children and can drive children far away from home.

The second area within a family that causes conflict is the decision of whether to join the family business. Family business leaders assume that because they have built a successful business that their children will naturally want to join them. They are usually shocked when they realize that their children have no interest in their years of hard work. Accepting this fact can be difficult for most family business leaders. But rather than force a business on a bloodline successor, family leaders should try and understand the deep-seated reasons why successor refuse to join the business.

Certain successors disinterest is revocable when the root cause is discovered and resolved. If a successor lack of interest is not revocable, business leaders should explore other options for succession. Forcing an unwilling successor into a business is like killing the business with your own bare hands. Discovering the reason why successors refuse to join family businesses is the first step to salvaging a stalled bloodline succession. These reasons are usually not what successors tell you. They require expert diagnosis to fish them out.

The third area of concern within a family that causes conflict is the choice of who to marry. Many families have traditions, beliefs and expectations about who their children should marry. Most times, these expectations are unclear and uncommunicated until a life partner appear on the scene. Rather than clearly define expectations and help children develop the skills to find suitable life partner. Parents wait until emotions run wild. When emotions set in logical reasons is muted. The job of parents therefore is to help their children prepare ahead and access all the logical blueprints before they meet Mr. or Mrs. Right. This is the only way to ensure they marry well. Anything less will result in family conflict.

When the age of blind obedience clashes with the age of reasoning. The only way out is resolution and alignment. Younger generation were born at a time where there is increasing awareness for education, human rights and reason. They are exposed to advanced critical thinking techniques and diverse cultures. This makes them question authorities, even when this authority is their parent. Questioning authorities and ideas help in promoting a culture of critical thinking. Critical thinking is important for the long-term success of your children. Children who obey blindly end up unhappy and frustrated. Parents must therefore find ways to align with the younger generation.

With the right professional help, parents can get the help they need to resolve family conflict and engage in productive conversation with the next generation. Parents must be guided to answer important questions like what kind of beliefs should a child obey and why? When should a child raise appropriate questions and question authority? When should a child outright defy a sacred cow? And How would a child know the sacred cow that is in his or her best interest? Having these productive conversations with your children will boost family unity.

The unity of your family is important to you. Your beliefs and values are important. The long-term preservation of your business and wealth is also important. The only way to win is to reassess these three areas, align them and be willing to do the necessary tradeoffs.