Philippine Core Values
Philippine Values is defined by the way of people live their life as an influence of one’s culture. Philippines, having been an archipelago, has not become a hindrance towards having a single values system throughout the country. In whatever part of the country you may be, one will find the same hospitality that the Filipinos are known for as well as many other values that have originated from our forefathers.
The values of Filipinos have been looked upon by foreigners as a weakness instead of strength due to the nature of how they may be abused and manipulated due to these values. But values are what make up a certain nation both in growth and unity. Some may see that Filipino values as a hindrance to the growth of the country and yet others may say that his is what makes our country powerful.
In order to understand these concepts, let us look into the different values of the Filipinos and how they may be of influence to a person’s growth.
The Philippines is known to be a family centered nation. The Filipinos recognize their family as an important social structure that one must take care of. They give importance to the safety and unity of one’s family. The Filipino family is so intact that it is common for members of the same family work for the same company. It is also common to find the whole clan living in the same area as that the Filipinos are afraid to be too far from their own family.
People get strength from their family, thus a child may have several godparents to ensure his future in case his parents will not be there for him. They also do not let their elders live too far away from them. The Filipinos take care of their elders by taking them into their homes. Unlike the Westerners, the Filipinos do not send their elders to nursing homes to be taken care of. They believe that when their elders are unable to live alone, the time has come for them to pay their respects and to be able to serve their parents just as they were cared for when they were younger.
Filipinos are taught to become respectful individuals. This is mainly due to the influence of Christianity that tells us to honor both our parents and our elders. The use of ‘’po’’ and ‘’’opo’’’ when in conversation with an elder or someone who is older is a manifestation of how Filipinos respect their elders.
The Filipinos are very hospitable when it comes to their fellowmen. They will invite their visitors to come into their homes and offer them treats such as snacks and drinks after a long journey. There are also instances when the Filipinos will serve only the best to their visitors even if at times they may not be able to afford it. They also go the extremes as to give up the comfort of their own bedrooms for their guests and to the point of sleeping on floor just to ensure that their guests are comfortable.
Gratitude or ‘’’utang na loob’’’ is a very popular Filipino characteristic. One does not forget the good deeds that others may have done to him or her especially at times of great need. This debt of gratitude are sometimes abused by those who have done well to others as they may ask favors or things that may either be unreasonable or beyond the means of the one in debt.
Shame or ‘’’Hiya’’’ is a very common Filipino value. It is said that Filipinos would go to great lengths in order for one not to be ashamed. Hiya has a great influence on one’s behavior for one will do everything, even if it is beyond his means just to save his reputation as well as the family’s. Filipinos feel pressured to meet the status quo of the society when it comes to economic standing. One indication of this might be a willingness to spend more than they can afford on a party rather than be shamed by their economic circumstances.
Flexibility, Adaptability, and Creativity
Filipino's sense of joy and humor is evident in their optimistic approach to life and its travails. The ability to laugh at themselves and their predicament is an important coping mechanism that contributes to emotional balance and a capacity to survive. These are manifested in the ability to adjust to often difficult circumstances and prevailing physical and social environments. Filipinos have a high tolerance for ambiguity that enables them to respond calmly to uncertainty or lack of information. Filipinos often improvise and make productive and innovative use of whatever is available. These qualities have been repeatedly demonstrated in their capacity to adapt to living in any part of the world and in their ability to accept change.
Loyalty or ‘’’Pakikisama’’’ is another Filipino value. Filipinos are said to be loyal to their friends and fellowmen in order to ensure the peace in the group. This is manifested in their basic sense of justice and fairness and concern for other's well being. Filipinos recognize the essential humanity of all people and regard others with respect and empathy. With this orientation, Filipinos develop a sensitivity to the nature and quality of interpersonal relationships, which are their principal source of security and happiness.
Hard work and Industry
The related capacity for hard work and industry among Filipinos is widely recognized. Filipinos are universally regarded as excellent workers who perform well whether the job involves physical labor and tasks or highly sophisticated technical functions. This propensity for hard work, which often includes a highly competitive spirit, is driven by the desire for economic security and advancement for oneself and one's family. This achievement orientation is further accompanied by typically high aspirations and great personal sacrifices.
Trust in God or the concept of ‘’’Bahala na’’’ has been over-used time and again. This ideal is used when a person does not know what to do or is to lazy to do anything at all. This belief to put fate in God’s hands may be a sign of how religious Filipinos may be at the same time, it may show that the Filipinos are free-spirited and that they put their life in fate’s hands.
- “Philippines - Language, Culture, Customs and Etiquette.” Kwintessential. http://www.kwintessential.co.uk/resources/global-etiquette/philippines-country-profile.html (accessed on 6 November 2007)
- “Alternative Concepts and Other Values of the Filipinos.” Livinginthephilippines. http://www.livinginthephilippines.com/philculture/alternative.html (accessed 6 November 2007)
- Quito, Emerito S. “The Ambivalence of Filipino Traits and Values.” Cultural Heritage and Contemporary Change. http://www.crvp.org/book/Series03/III-7/chapter_v.htm (accessed 14 November 2007)
- Gorospe, Vitaliano R., S.J. “Understanding the Filipino Value System.” http://www.crvp.org/book/Series03/III-7/chapter_vi.htm (accessed 14 November 2007)