How to cope with the loss of values in modern society
The Second Summer Peace Summit brought together 100 influential women from different countries caring about the future of the world. One of the main topics of this year’s Summit was dedicated to the loss of values in modern society. Marina Volynkina, co-founder of the Summer Peace Summit, shared her ideas and experience related to the formation of the new principles of the development of the world. As a head of a news agency, initiator of several social projects, and rector of an institute, she focused on the social aspects close to her.
Head of the Global Women Media news agency, Rector of the Institute for the Humanities and Information Technologies, PhD in Law
We held the Summit online instead of meeting face to face. Who would have thought that this would happen? Although, it can hardly come as a surprise that our world has become unsteady. We have no other choice than to accept the world’s unsteadiness. Because that is the only way how we can adapt to the new order of life, to maintain creativity, and to develop under the new conditions”, believes Marina Volynkina.
Despite the fact that the Summit’s programme had to be changed because of the pandemic to make the topics as relevant as possible, the title topic of the event remained unchanged – Global Women for Global Growth.
According to Marina Volynkina, the participants of Peace 50 and humanity in general are facing a major task. On the one hand, it is necessary to bring countries from crisis and uncertainty back to sustainable development. On the other hand, humanity must preserve everything that it managed to achieve before the pandemic.
“COVID-19 opened the Pandora’s box. It exposed problems that had been accumulated long before the pandemic”, believes the expert. Together with the pandemic, the humanity was contaminated by the panic before the uncertainty. People’s consumption-based attitude to the world became more apparent. Misinformation and distrust among the society, discrimination, and racism have manifested themselves more widely.
“Fears of contracting the coronavirus, fears of unemployment and loss of income, fears of isolation and anxiety about the future have spread around the globe. COVID-19 has become a superstar in the media. In fact, it has become a devastating information virus.”
However, even a crisis had its positive aspects. Thanks to it, people managed to understand the obsolescence of the traditional system of values being a support pillar of the societies in different countries. To address this serious problem, it was first necessary to identify and recognize it.
An individual without values can quickly turn into a victim of life circumstances, a hostage of uncertainty.
Fear is a feeling preventing us from development. People must be guided by the ‘healing’ creative force of unconditional love.
According to Marina Volynkina, displacing fear from people’s hearts is only possible through love, creative energy filling a person and his or her life. Women have always been and will always be the drivers of that energy. Women took the responsibility for the well-being of their families and friend and helped other people around cope with the problems during the pandemic.
“We, women leaders, must guide a new system of values. We must develop and propose new social principles of social being and consciousness”, emphasized Marina Volynkina.
Many of today’s developed societies are based on consumerist principles. Many people have completely forgotten that one of the main characteristics of ‘individuality’ is a grown-up responsibility for oneself and others, for society and environment, a desire to create in harmony with the world.
Today, it is extremely important not to stray from the right path but to return society back to key human values. To do that, it is necessary to move from declarations to actions.
“I believe, today’s women leaders are capable of institutional creativity. We are capable of and therefore we are responsible for bringing the principles of love, creation, and sustainable development to educational, economic, and cultural life of our nations”, says the expert. As a head of a news agency and a rector of a higher education institution, Marina Volynkina believes that modern world needs new educational concept, new approaches to business, and a transformed media system. During her report, Marina Volynkina shared her personal opinion on what principles of organisation of today’s society must be cultivated.
Educational system. Today, most Russian higher education institutions educate consumers. However, that is obviously a dead-end. In the process of education, it is important to instill in a person a sense of social responsibility, the desire to use his or her abilities for the benefit of society.
This is a real effective model embodied in the Institute headed by Marina Volynkina. “We have trained several generations of experts and are proud that our graduates and students love their professions, fill them with proper meanings, and strive to be useful to people and society in general”, she comments.
Modern education must cease to be an obligation. It should turn into a person’s vocation. Then professionals will sincerely love their work and will manage to change the world.
Public social system. According to the expert, to form a proper system of values, it is necessary to identify the zones of responsibility of the state and public structures clearly.
Care for people with disabilities that currently rests mainly on families and charity foundations is one of the bright examples. According to Marina Volynkina, it will be the direct responsibility of the state. Persons with disabilities need quality education, treatment, leisure, and employment. The state can and must take full care of people with disabilities allocating money for such needs.
Such an attitude towards the people with disabilities based on care, mercy, and common sense should become part of the political culture.
Transformation of consciousness through media. To achieve real changes, we need to change the culture of our societies and their consciousness. That can be done using such a powerful tool as media.
Today, the majority of media neglect the most important humanity principles in the pursuit of ratings. They do not show respect to society, don’t take the responsibility for the published information, and oftentimes don’t think about the consequences of their journalistic policies.
However, not only information agenda of society but also self-perception of people, their happiness and even immunity in all possible meanings depend on the content broadcasted by the media.
During the pandemic, many websites, TV channels, and publishers strived to attract the attention of the audience by publishing scandal news and creating the sense of world apocalypse. There must be no such situations because the media are the key interpreter of our reality.
“The world has come to a situation, in which media have gained enormous control over the society, while in reality it should be the other way around”.
Marina Volynkina proposed to create an expert community of socially responsible and wise people. For instance, it can be joined by researchers, cultural experts, and educational workers. They could analyze the work of specific media and decide what media are worthy of support and trust from the society.
“I believe that these principles should become part of a new national strategy. Women are those who can introduce and fulfil those principles. They can change the world through love, trust, and cooperation”, concluded Marina Volynkina.
Viktoria Yezhova, Global Women Media news agency
Translated by Nikolay Gavrilov