Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Friday, October 19th, 2018

Widening Gap between Generations

There is nothing as permanent as change. And, this phenomenon is true for the entire universe. Wherever there is matter, there is change. The changes in the physical environment are so evident that we can see them any time we want. However, in certain cases we become so used to them that we do not feel them unless they are extreme or unexpected. Meanwhile, there are changes within human beings themselves too. This is true not only for their physiology but their psychology and their ideology as well. Consequently, these changes result in the differences with the overall society and ultimately, between the two consecutive periods within a society and the people living during those periods; thus, generating a generation gap.
Generation gap is basically the result of changes at a larger level. When two consecutive generations differ each other in their ways of thinking and ways of living, generation gap exists. Within a society, it is very natural and is bound to happen. In fact, it is as per the requirements of evolution. However, the important factor to under in today’s societies is that the generation gap is very wide as the changes are very quick and mostly drastic and thus results in differences so wide that it becomes too difficult to manage.
It is also imperative to understand that changes are not always positive. Though a modern generation may always claim to be more educated and advanced but it may not claim to be better in so many aspects. When there is a discussion about human society, it is not only advancement that matters; there are many ethical and spiritual aspects as well that needs to be considered.  
There is no doubt in the fact that generation gap is natural but it can turn into a serious problem in so many ways. When there are drastic differences within two generations, there are influences on entire families and social interactions. Parents, who nourish their children for years, at some point of life may become strangers for their children and sometimes children consider their parents as their enemies instead of guardians and caretakers. Therefore, in such cases, the gap keeps on widening and the parents and children keep on moving away from each other.
The important thing at such a point is to understand the basic theory of life and that is, “things change”. Everybody needs to understand this basic philosophy of life. Though it seems very simple to understand, it is the most difficult to adjust to. People agree and accept this phenomenon theoretically but practically they never adopt it and that is where the problem arises. Parents need to understand that their children and their way of thinking and behaving will definitely be different. That is bound to happen. Children cannot be similar to their parents. Unfortunately, most of the parents want that their children to be their carbon copy. They abhor the differences in them and keep on giving their own examples and the examples of their own times and in most of the cases these examples are obsolete and they are no more applicable in a different society. When the children do not do what the parents expect, which are basically unnatural the parents are frustrated and gap starts getting wider.
It is not necessary that all the changes that are there in new generation should be accepted by the parents as some of them may be very much awkward and even alien. With the penetration of globalization in the different cultures, it is not difficult to find many aspects of the life in the new generation quite unfit for their society. Such aspects should be dealt with masterly. It is not to say that all the parents should be sociologists but they can be wise and for wisdom there is no need of great deal of education but experience is what counts the most.
As the children become youngsters, they are full of energy and they are easily influenced by the changes as those changes influence their learning process; therefore, they are more open to the social changes. They, in certain cases, get carried away by the tides of changes and when they become conscious they find themselves nowhere. Then the time to mend has already passed and they have no way to return; therefore, the parents need to understand them and help them get to a better destination. Parents cannot stop changes; all they can do is to guide the changes properly and channel them towards positivity.
Two consecutive generations may always differ from each other in attitude, behavior and thinking but they can always have emotional attachment and can have a sense of respect for one another. There can be affection between them, but for emotions and affection to tie them tightly it is necessary that they have to rise above the differences in cloths, thinking and tastes. They have to raise their humanity to a level higher and start perceiving each other on the basis of their beings not the different manifestations of their beings.