Family is the basic unit and building block of the society. Family is the place where kids get their values and these values help to make the future of any society. A healthy and vibrant society is possible only with a healthy family system.
We learn our first lesson of sharing and caring only in family. Family environment provides the practice of sharing with in the family members. We learn how to care for others besides my own self. This is where we learn on how to leave with other. We learn the art of adjustment. This art of collective leaving in a family then emulate in the whole society and we reach towards the goal of ‘vasudhaiva kutumbakam‘ (the world is one family).
The basic building block of Hindu society is the joint or extended family, usually consisting of three or four generations living together. The women collectively cook and share domestic responsibilities, and the men provide the pooled income. Elders take important decisions and, based on their own experience in life, offer guidance to younger members. Within the family, property usually passes from father to son, and men make many of the decisions, though older ladies carry considerable influence. When women marry, they usually join their husband’s family, though maintaining contact with their own.
An important aspect of Hindu family life is the inter-dependence between members. Marriage itself is a broad social and religious obligation, rather than just a relationship between partners. The extended family provides considerable practical and emotional support, as for example when children are born. One advantage is that marriage stability is not inordinately reliant on the state of the couple’s emotional ties.