What core-values must we instill in our children so that they do not make a mess of their adult lives? ‘Instill’ is perhaps the wrong word because I believe we are born with these and move away from them as we grow up. Then again the message is often corrupted. For instance a child that is told to do good and good will come unto him or her (which is not necessarily the case) misses the point and the inherent benefit of doing so, and gives it up when experience shows otherwise. Moreover much of what passes as values is shallow, needlessly restraining and even harmful.

There is I believe a set of indispensable all important core-values that is all one need have. That inevitably take the individual to happiness and if followed by others to the well being of all. That are universal, not contradictory to reality, and are so basic that they remain true to the test of time irrespective of change in circumstances, or technologies, etc. Values that have their basis or belong to the very core of our being and counter the ego that takes us astray. They are – truthfulness or respect for truth, kindness towards others, and self-forgetfulness. To give examples, it calls for looking to do what is right or fair rather than what is in one’s self-interest, taking joy and sorrow not only in our own but also in the fortunes of others, acting with a magnanimity of spirit, and to be unaffected by egotism, the behavior of others or their opinion of us.

The persona or ego is insecure and looks to establish itself through ownership or position in a world that in a sense it itself has constructed. It is ephemeral and constantly building itself as something real and needs to believe in the world-illusion that mutually sustains it. It is for this reason all the time serious. A final ingredient to this concoction of core-values is to not take everything too seriously and to move on. That is to say, to not be overly critical, or unforgiving, and the like.