Druze Profile: Perceptions and Prospects: Druze Value System
This paper concentrates on the question “What is the impact on the Druze community settled abroad keeping in view the changing time, technology, ideology, and various social systems.” History has proven the Druzes are as fiercely tenacious in preserving their identity in the United States as they have always been in Lebanon and other countries of the Middle East. As proof of their steadfastness, they have never abandoned their traditions during the one thousand years of their history. The Druzes have undergone upheavals throughout this one thousand year period, and in time of war, as in time of peace, they have never faltered from their moral and ethical values. The original Druze thinking and belief has sustained and prevailed at home and abroad for one thousand years, and that will continue to endure.
GROWING UP DRUZE IN AMERICA by Badeha N. Shaban
This article was published in Our Heritage, April 1995, Volume 15, Number 1, page 18 by Badeha N. Shaban from Richmond, Virginia. The following excerpts convey many of the author’s thoughts.
Ms. Shaban has apparently realized that over time, attitudes change, regarding what is important in one’s life. When she was an early teen, she was very envious of the “American” life, such as going to parties and dances. She believed that she was being denied the fun that everyone else was experiencing. Now, however, she says the time the family spends together should be focused on dealing with the issues concerning their children. Her parents did that while raising her and her two brothers. When she was growing up, she spent about three hours a night with her parents. They both worked, but they were able to spend quality time with Bedeha and her two older brothers. She states that her parents may have been limited with their time; they were never limited with their love. Today, there are many issues with which teens are dealing , and there are so many people influencing their ideas and decisions. Her biggest problem was the strict rules her parents set for her, as it was for her Druze friends and cousins. They used to get together and complain about everything from being unable to wear make-up to being unable to see a movie without their brothers presence. However, her priorities have changed, and Bedeha thinks she is a better person for having followed those rules. She did not fall a victim to the temptations like some of her peers: premarital sex, inter-religious and inter-racial relationships, unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and much more. These problems cannot to be ignored to even our Druze society. They are very real today, and they are relevant.
Bedeha attributes her good fortune to luck, faith in Allah’s Will, love for others, and respect for herself and those around her. She says:
“I want people to know that we all go through difficult periods. We should be there for
each other. The choices we make when we are younger will determine our fate for the
future. I know from experience that decision making as a teen and young adult is very
difficult. Most young people tend to make decisions out of emotion when they should
be using their brain. People need to think of all the possible outcomes of their actions.
Think about these four things when you are confused:
(1) How will this decision affect my future and the goals I have set for myself?
(2) How will this decision affect my family?
(3) Am I making this decision out of emotion, or am I being realistic about it?
(4) How will I explain this decision on Judgment Day?”
Badeha says that these questions helped her when she was torn about making a decision. She sincerely hopes that they will help you, as well.
Part one: Introduction
Part two: Social Values
Part three: Commitment And Dedication
Part four: American Druze Institutions
Part five: American Druze Publications
Part six: American Druze Cultural Centers
Part seven: World Druze Societies
Annual Druze Conventions
A note about Julia Makarem
“Let us make our families and country proud and show them that we can be Druze in
America. Would you like some guidance or shoulder to lean on? Please let me know.
After all, one can never have too many friends,” Badeha proclaims.