Category: Social Institutions

Social Institutions

Social institutions and value system are closely knit together:

All social institutions are outcomes of cultural values but they reinforce the same values in turn, too.

Family, education, sports, healthcare, careers, relationships, marriage, parenting, religions, nationalities, politics, army, business and money are all social institutions conceived by human society in one phase or the other of their evolution.

Their conception since their very beginning had been guided by the then established cultural values in their domains; and once they got instituted based on those values, all these social institutions became solid strongholds to safeguard the same intangible ideas that had given shape to them.

Many of them were necessary, many others were not; when they were instituted:

  • Family replaced community.
  • Education was an automatic process which had earlier taken place on its own as children grew watching their senior adults doing actions and mimicked same as game. Later education got institutionally formalized.
  • Sports for entertainment got designed on the patterns of mock wars which humans had to fight with other species in the beginning and later with different communities of their own species.
  • Healthcare which was a personal activity in the beginning later got turned into a specialized institution.
  • On the same lines as those of healthcare, various different careers were carved out by fragmenting the total experience of life in various different specialized partial activities of life.
  • When family replaced community, relationships came into existence replacing colleagueship among the members of communities.
  • Marriage became the seed of family, limiting people to procreate in association with authorized partners assigned to them by the sanction of society.
  • Parenting that used to be a community affair earlier got limited to two individuals who had given birth to their children.
  • Religions sprang up to address human fears and insecurity by promising a larger than life existence as a father figure who would take care of his children as and when they ever fell in trouble.
  • Nationalities got instituted as super-communities with the basic difference that communities had no hierarchical layers whereas nationalities were complex structures of many hierarchical layers in them.
  • Politics was born out of a need to keep these hierarchical layers separate from one another so that society would never regain a community-like simplified uniform pattern.
  • Armies were instituted by these super-communities to keep any attempt to regain a community-like simplified uniform pattern as well as any attempt by another super-community to engulf them in order to expand its size.
  • Business got instituted to establish and grow exclusive personal right of individuals over assets, processes and innovations of social usage; which in turn strengthened the existence and development of newly established hierarchical layers in the newly instituted super-communities.
  • Money got instituted as a facility to value these exclusive personal right of individuals over assets, processes and innovations of social usage in terms of mathematical numbers so that they might be traded with ease.

Who had known then that an institution designed as a facility for life would one day become an entity next only to God, or else the vice versa!  ;-)

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