“Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.” What are your values?

"A value is an abstract concept that a person is willing to embrace at the expense of personal comfort."

This definition suggests that in order to live in harmony with his/her values, a person should be willing to sacrifice his/her personal comfort. If this is true,  a person  may even be willing to do things that others do not agree with, so he/she can stay aligned with his/her values.

In keeping with this idea, here are ten values.  In order to complete the discussion, please organize these values in order of priority for you.  It will be interesting to compare what people put first, second, etc., as their personal values.

Here is the list [No. 1 should be your most important value.]:

Success, Happiness, Spirituality, Freedom, Responsibility, Integrity, Perserversance, Love, Serenity

 Please explain at least your first two choices. 

Expert Answers

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I would put integrity first, then love. There are people who I do not love, but I feel I should act with integrity towards all in order to encourage the same in others. I value those who are honest and consistent in their dealings with me, and as an educator I feel I should treat others in the same way.

Happiness and responsibility would be next for me. Everyone has the right to be happy, but also has the responsibility to preserve this and other rights for those around them.

Perseverence and success would come after these, and I think that after attending to the other values, spirituality and serenity would follow as a consequence of acting to implement the others.

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I would put freedom first, because the most important thing to me is that others are free. The thing that bothers me most is prejudice toward various cultures or groups of people. I find it very challenging to move forward with classes who have difficulty empathizing with others. 

Integrity would be the second value that is important to me. Honesty and following ones values and morals is necessary to accomplish goals. 

As a teacher it is really important to evaluate personal goals and how that is reflected in the way we teach. Interesting post!

Here is my final list below:

Freedom, Integrity,  Perserversance, Love, Serenity, Success, Happiness, Spirituality, Responsibility

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I'm going with Freedom, Responsibility, Integrity, Perseverance, in no particular order. These are vital to keeping the "self" personally involved with the outside world in a constructive manner. Remove any of these, and construction slowly devolves into destruction. If you are not personally responsible, you will take credit while shifting blame, thus slowly losing integrity. If you do not persevere, you will never get anything accomplished; without accomplishments, you cannot have a healthy ego to support your personal responsibility and integrity. Freedom, of course, is essential to support and enable all of the other values. Every single one depends on being free from oppression and fear.

The others, while nice, are a little more optional. Yes, even love; it's nice when you connect with others, but it is not vital to personal happiness unless you are ruled entirely by your emotions. (<-- gross generalization) The point is that without those top four, the others will fall apart, especially success and serenity. Spirituality is a personal choice, so it's not vital to everyone, just those who accept it. Finally, happiness is a function of personal well-being and comfort; you can be happy in miserable circumstances and vice versa, so it's up to the individual to decide where their happiness lies.

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I tend to learn towards love and responsibility.

Love: As a parent, wife, and teacher, I believe that it is important to love both your family and those one is "in charge of." My love for my career shows my students how important it is to pursue higher learning. My love for my family was instilled in me at a young age. Love, for me, is of the utmost importance.

Responsibility: Again, as a parent and wife, I am responsible for many things. Insuring that certain things are taken care of insures that things run smoothly at that I am not ignoring what needs to be done. In the end, a feeling of accomplishment is typically felt--even in the smaller things.

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Oh, I agree!  When I read this topic, the first thing I thought of was a line from Sherlock Holmes in one of my favorite stories, “The Adventure of the Speckled Band.”

When a doctor does go wrong he is the first of criminals. He has nerve and he has knowledge.

This statement has always meant to me that some people have a higher responsibility than others.  I guess you could say the same is true of policemen and soldiers.  Some people have skills that would make them incredibly dangerous if they decided to use their powers for evil instead of good.

When you educate someone, you have to make sure the person grows a conscience too.

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1- Love: Ultimately, all else pales before family for me, and as pohnpei said above, family relationships are based on love.

2- Success: I actually view this as very similar to responsibility. To be successful is to, in my view, meet and exceed responsibilities.

From there, I guess I'd say that all of the others are pretty much equally important to me except spirituality. 

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For me, the first two of these would be love and responsibility.  From those values would flow many of the other values that I see as important.

Love is #1 because parent-child relationships and husband-wife relationships are so very important.  These relationships are built on love and thrive on love.

Responsibility is #2 because we cannot be good people unless we live up to our responsibilities to ourselves and to our families.

I would put integrity, perserverance, and happiness in any order as my next three.  These are things that either are part of responsibility or flow from responsibility and love.

After that, I would put serenity at #6 as that clearly comes from the previous five.  Then comes freedom followed by success and spirituality.

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