Volunteerism as a means to promote spiritual and moral development
Пальчевская Е. С., Куимова М. В. Volunteerism as a means to promote spiritual and moral development // Молодой ученый. 2015. №4. С. 601-603.
If you do a good job for others, you heal yourself at the same time, because a dose of joy is a spiritual cure. It transcends all barriers.
Morality is not the doctrine of how we may make ourselves happy, but how we may make ourselves worthy of happiness
The problem of spiritual and moral upbringing of the younger generation acquires a significant importance in the modern world. This task becomes one of the priorities in Russia’s national security.
The term “spirituality” traditionally refers to all related to the human soul, spirit, God, Church and faith . Moral roots of Russian people have their origin in high antiquity. This is clearly reflected in the merging of Christianity and ancient world views of the Slavs which furthered the appearance of Russian Orthodoxy. The knowledge of one’s historical and cultural roots nurtures love and pride of the country’s past, patriotism, sense of responsibility, duty to the state and family . Spirituality and morality are inherent components of a personality’s socialization and development [4, 6, 10]. Nowadays the loss of traditional religion and the change in the understanding of spirituality in contemporary culture give rise to the crisis in the spiritual and moral sphere.
Currently traditional foundations of upbringing and education are being substituted by more “modern” Western ones:
- Christian virtues by universal values of humanism;
- pedagogics of respect to elders and cooperative labour by development of creative, selfish personality;
- virtue, continence, self-containment by permissiveness and repletion of wants;
- love and self-sacrifice by Western psychology of self-affirmation;
- interest in the national culture by interest in foreign languages and foreign traditions .
The Modern process of upbringing and education should have an innovative character and meet the interests of youth, parents, society and state. The system of moral education should include:
- understanding and taking into account all sources of learner’s moral experience (educational, social activities, relations with teachers, parents, etc);
- right balance of forms of activities and education at different age stages;
- inclusion of ethical criteria in the evaluation of all activities [5, 9, 11, 12].
In general, the behaviour of a spiritually and morally educated person is reflected through the ability to:
- set a goal, choose and correct forms of activity, predict results;
- orient in information space;
- interact with people, be tolerant;
- comprehend and solve problems;
- perceive responsibility of one’s choices;
- self-educate and self-develop;
- develop scientific and research skills, do independent research;
- learn the world around;
- develop environmental conscience;
- do analytical, critical and creative thinking;
- be in harmony with nature and society;
- comprehend cultural values and one’s place in the world [1, 9, 10].
On the whole, current education is supported by the basic rule of Orthodox ethics of the Russian people. It states that the state of the world around us and the entire earth depends on the purity of the person’s inner world. A man is only a temporary guest on the earth and the surrounding world was given to him for care and creativity .
There are multiform means to educate youth in and out of the classroom. Volunteerism is one form of outdoor education. It includes a wide variety of volunteer activities: traditional forms of mutual aid, official delivery of services, help without any money reward, etc. .
Volunteerism helps people show their capabilities and feel their potential. Participation in volunteerism gives a unique opportunity to gain a great experience in organizing events, projects, visit different cities of Russia, meet interesting people and make new acquaintances.
There exist different types of volunteering activities:
- administrative/office work;
- teaching/tutoring/supporting learning;
- arts (music/drama/crafts);
- youth work;
- community development;
- sports/outdoor activities/coaching, etc.
To study at university, gain knowledge and find oneself in social life are equally important for young people. Thus the authorities of universities try to organize and promote participation of its students in various large-scale events. It makes the life of student volunteers full of memorable, unforgettable events (social, sport, etc). For example, National Research Tomsk Polytechnic University organized volunteers for the APEC Summit — 2012, the 14th IAAF World Championships in Athletics 2013, the 2013 XXVII Summer Universiade, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, etc.
Adolescence is a period of intense formation of the system of value orientations, character and personality. Respect for one another, doing the right thing is the main fundamental value and principle of a person’s mutual relations in society and the basis of modern education. The centuries-old history of peoples shows that it is impossible to create a strong nation without education of spiritual and moral values among young people. These qualities are considered as a factor of consolidation of the whole society, the source and means of spiritual, political and economic revival of the country, its state integrity and security. Therefore, restoration and distribution of traditional spiritual and moral culture could be the salvation in overcoming the crisis in Russia.
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