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Upholding Values


The February 2023 Session on LRM monthly telegram discussion was on “Upholding Values in this present day”. An interesting topic you would say.

The moment the flyer went out, the comment I started to get from people was, naaah, one session would not be enough to handle the topic. My response was “I know just let us start first” LOL.

So, the day came, and we start…. thirty minutes into the conversation, we are still looking for a consensus on the definition of values, morals, and principles. Somehow, dictionary meaning seem not enough, intellectuals are discussing. A definition was eventually established, so we continue. The host asked for what determines the rightness or wrongness of values… hmm another debate, and for the first time since the inauguration of the LRM telegram discussion, we spend two solid hours, to be precise 1 hour, and 50 minutes if we remove the minutes spent on pleasantries.

It was an insightful evening of discussion, and it was worth it.

We ended the February session on “Upholding Values in the present day” but not concluded, adjourned, to be continued in March.

So, I bring the topic here for the contribution of a larger audience.

What are Values?

Extracted from the chapter three of my book “Single and Waiting”, according to the Cambridge dictionary, they are the principles that help you decide what is right and wrong, and how to act in various situations. It also defines principles as moral rules or standards of good behaviour or fair dealing.

Collins dictionary defines values as the moral principles, beliefs or accepted standards of a person or social group. It defines principles as a set of standards or rules of personal conduct.

I define Values as those things that inform our principle.  Our principles are formed by our values.

What informs our values in life?

The saying “we are products of our environment” comes to play in answering this question. Our values are formed by the things we see while growing up either at home or in the society. We grow up becoming what our individual homes, environment, and society consciously or unconsciously, directly or indirectly impacts on us.

So, it goes further to give the question, can values be right or wrong? I would say the answer to this is relative. What is right to an individual, or a particular society might be wrong to another person and in another society, and this was what most participants that evening echoed.

Now Fr Benjamin Ulebor suggested during the discussion that unless the word moral is added to preface the word value, it might be difficult to determine if it’s right or wrong. That means we’ll be saying something is morally right or wrong. However, some people did not agree that value should be prefaced that way. What is your opinion?

So, please what’s your take on this topic? Can Values be right or wrong? How and why? Kindly shed more light on values, morals, and principles, and please define each as a separate entity before bringing any of them together.

Now, the truth is, if we don’t clearly define value, it will be difficult to declare them right or wrong. Then it makes it sensitive and dangerous to encourage anyone to uphold values less they end up upholding wrong values.

Values are eroding, we say. Good values? Right or wrong values?

So, when you say values can never be right or wrong… clarify

When you agree that values should be upheld… please specify

When you say values should evolve, hmmm, another deep water to dive into, help clarify so we don’t subject values (right or wrong) evolution to erosion.

I suffice to say that evolving values can become eroded values.

Please let the discussion continue…

PS: please feel free to join the conversation next month, March 19th using the link below, as we continue to expound this topic. You can catch up on the recorded February conversation on the telegram page. Look out for it in the corner for pinned items above the page.

LRM is an open forum without a religious, age or race bias, you are welcome to join our monthly discussion!


Mary A. Adepoju



6 thoughts on “<strong>THE VALUE AFFAIR….</strong>”

  1. Values according to the Civics could signal as norms and behavior/ ideas and beliefs which people hold dearly and cherish. E.g contentment, respect, hardwork, honesty, tolerance, fair play, integrity etc. Suffice to these which I regard as values, it should be upheld. As a teacher, I have noticed learner’s lackadaisical attitude to study. Why? Because there is a way out fully supported by their parent- the home which is the first school has lost its integrity, hardwork and honestly. These learners are called the future n I wonder if “these” future has an integrity to offer. All positive values eroding away started from the home. Societal influence just adds to it. Charity begins at home 😔. A good name is far better than gold says an English adage🙏

  2. Thank you for your contribution and summation; “Home, which is the first school has lost its integrity, handwork and honesty” 👌

    Would it be right to say then, that values can be right or wrong, since there can be right or wrong norms, behaviour, ideas and beliefs?

    Value or values is a term used to describe the worth of something. It can be tangible like something you can touch, see, hold or measure physically. It can also be intangible posture, behaviours etc. Measurements of values changes from generations to generations or let me say from age to age so that what we may admire as valuable today or this age may not be of much value the next generation. There are so many situations that rapidly affect values in any age. That is interactions among people. It also affects character formation. Parents should therefore take care how they bring up their children or wards. Yoruba adage says ” Ko omo re ti o ba wa ni ewe “….that you should bring up your children well when they are still young, then they will give you rest when you are old. Today, young ones are opened to the world through media and other gadgets. Therefore parents should endeavour to guide and guard their children as they grow up in the use of these facilities.

    1. Thank you for your contribution sir.

      Hmm, this is a clarion call to all.
      One of the reasons there is so much decadence in our world today can be attributed to the fact that a lot of parents do not have or have allowed the values inculcated into them while growing up to erode, and you sure cannot give what you do not have🤷‍♀️

      So, if we all feel displeased that there is so much decadence in the world today, the onus lies on us to adopt appropriate Values, build our life principles around them and live by the principles. After all, it is said that children learn more from what they see than what they are told.
      Basically, parents should be more intentional with “parenting”.

  4. Maryjoy Ogbeh

    Going through others points, it’s amazing.

    Value is part and parcel of human life. That’s which one cherish and uphold.
    You should also have it in mind that you can’t give what you don’t have. If you are a person of integrity, you can can uphold it as a value, but if you are not you can’t uphold it. Infact what you value defines who you are..
    In my own opinion, value can be right or wrong except is generally accepted by a community or a group of people for the betterment of the community. Following the jer era or social media era some youths hardly differnciate good from bad because of the social media influence. For example to some persons, the posting of nude pictures on social media is dehumanising of our integrity while to some is an avenue of gaining popularity. In a nut shell, value enables us to act rightly if only is generally accepted, enforced and inculcated by all. But if not is the other way round. That is why I still agree that value defines who we are.

  5. Wow, your value defines who you are👌. Thank you for your contribution.

    I beg to differ on the point that values can be termed right if it’s accepted by a community/society. In my opinion, it can be right to that community, but wrong to another community

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