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What Can We Learn from Western Culture?

June 4, 2013

We live in a closed society. Every now and then we find someone condemning western culture for being too open, flashy and modern in a way that is disturbing our society and the present day generation. Most of us believe that western culture is weakening our own value system and with time our culture will disappear.

But do you think it right to put blame on others for all your wrong actions? What is happening in our society is because of us, not because of any other person or society. Is wearing modern clothes, using mobile phones, eating fast food what westernization means to us? The fact is, we are in a dilemma. We do want to stay where we were and, at the same time, want to fly high up in the sky. But flying high when you are deeply rooted to the ground won’t let you fall in any case.

Moreover, every society whether western or eastern has both positive as well as negative sides. It depends upon the person: whether he or she wants to imbibe a positive or negative aspect of the same.

At present, a majority of us are blindly running after modernization and have started believing that western culture is doing only wrong. But this is not right, as western countries are developing at a much faster pace than us. Crime rate in some western countries is far less than what India has at present. Their cities come in the list of the most preferred destinations to live in the world because of low crime rate, and high standards of living. So, we must learn good things from everyone leaving aside the wrong.

What can we adopt from western culture?

Society and community value system

Deep-rooted family values are part of the Indian culture. Parents perform their duties to raise their kids, kids once grown up take care of the elders in the family and marriage is the most sacred union in Indian culture, and so on. But when it comes to society or community, we show an altogether different attitude. For any terrible situation, we think it is not our responsibility but that of someone else. However, the same responsibility towards community is well understood in the West. Western people show their concern for society and make sacrifices, if required.

Habit of Cleanliness

Most of us have the habit of throwing garbage here and there instead of putting it in its proper place. But, if you have been to any western country, then you might have observed a big difference in cleanliness. They keep their surroundings absolutely clean and do not throw even a single bit of paper on the road, in parks or at public places. Everything is well maintained.
In some western countries, different types of garbage like plastic, kitchen waste, etc are required to be put in separate garbage bags. These are then kept outside the home to be collected by respective garbage collectors. But in India, throwing garbage in empty plots is a common scene. So, we must learn a sense of cleanliness from them.

Traffic Rules

How many of you have seen someone or the other breaking traffic rules in India? I have seen this many a times. But westerners follow all the traffic rules very strictly, even if there is no traffic policeman around.


Transportation system in western countries is much better than in India. A friend of mine once went to England. She was travelling by bus. The bus stopped at its scheduled stop and there was a handicapped person waiting for the bus. This bus had that space occupied, so the driver of the bus deboarded. He contacted another bus driver driving the bus on the same route and confirmed the space for handicapped person and his wheelchair. The driver then waited for that bus. He left the place only after boarding the handicapped passenger in the right bus. Bus drivers can communicate with passengers whenever required and they speak very politely. Such types of incidents are absolutely hard to find in India.


Sense of accountability is great in western culture and we must learn this attribute from them. We must be answerable to what we do. However, in India, generally important people are less answerable than commoners.


Be professional like people in the West who do not allow their personal feelings, problems and dealings to interfere in their professional lives. Along with this we must be punctual and respect the other person’s time.

Therefore, going ahead by preserving our values and culture is not wrong. Also, we should change with time for good as everything in this world is changing. We must adopt good values of western culture to our value system for betterment, growth and development.


I am a mother. A wife. And daughter of my loving parents by heart with passion for creativity, zeal to achieve something big in life but want to live life to its fullest.


Showing 12 Comments :

It helped me alot


Nice i got the information as much as i wanted.


Not bad but I want more information


Absolutely right. What u say!
Yet, the westerners can also learn from the indians.
Especially the heart. I am a westerner. From Germany.
Only country in Europe with strong hearts are Italians.
People from Italy. Italians are the only ones anywhere.
That have hearts like indians. Germans are mainstream
too much as are the US people. Xi

śebastian Sai shultz November 21, 2015 at 9:24 am

Love this information.. Which greatly helped me at the time of debate.


as we know each coin has two sides, take it one positive & other negative. There may be some good points that our culture have, which may not be seen in western culture…&viceversa.
so for the development of nation/person he/she must look into POSITIVE part & neglect the other.
So there is need to develope educational aspects, litracy rate &decrease crime rate.


Both culture r best


A wonderful analysis mam about the necessary thoughts dat sud mixed up in our society.A need to come outsided d orthodoxy nd accept d finest thought all over d world.


“as western countries are developing at a much faster pace than us. Crime rate in some western countries is far less than what India has at present.”
Clearly, you are oblivious to the goings-on in this world. India, being a developing economy had a 5.25% growth last fiscal, while in developed countries like the UK, growth alternates between positive and negative decimal values, as has been the case for quite sometime now. Developed economies are saturated with capital, and their excessively liquid economy has resulted in them having to depend increasingly on the services sector, as compared to the more sustainable manufacturing sector, as the money is not being invested to acquire capital due to production constraints. Thus, production is now being outsourced to countries like China at an ever increasing rate.

The inmate population of the US dwarfs that of several developed nations ,although maybe not that of India, because its population is not even a third of the Indian population. While this signifies a strong judiciary and executive, we can say that this is qualitatively more or less the case in all developed countries.Everything else you mentioned are signs of material prosperity.
But I do agree with your point of view, though not with your arguments. Just because the West was able to achieve industrialization before the rest of the world does not make it a distinctly western phenomenon. What also bugs me the most is these idiots talking about the supremacy of the Western culture, which incidentally spans four out of the six habitable continents. Other cultures like the Indian and the Chinese cultures are just limited to singular countries now. So, no, mobile phones are not distinctly western just because they were invented somewhere in the four-continent big “Western world”. Any idiot who makes such an ill-informed statement is just engaging in intellectual masturbation.
It is also not proper to compare the culture of a single country and its products with that of four large continents rich in natural resources.Also, if four continents are involved , it is no longer a ‘culture’ but pretty much a world phenomenon. I urge all Indians to stop these naive comparisons and in the words of Bob Dylan to “Better start swimming or you’ll sink like a stone, ’cause the times they are a-changin’”.


Both the culture r best in themself…