Oct 8, 2009

Parenting Tabula Rasa: Nature v Nurture?

Tabula Rasa...Latin: "scraped tablet", though often translated "blank slate".

Tabula Rasa is the concept and belief that each human being is born "blank" (with no built-in mental content), and that their identity is defined entirely by events after birth. Similar to the Muslim’s view, when a newborn child is like a piece of white canvas and the journey of life will then colour to become a master piece or a piece of scrap.

Such concept was also being developed by Ibnu Sina (known as "Avicenna" in the Western world) in the 11th century. He uphold that the:

"human intellect at birth is rather like a tabula rasa, a pure potentiality that is actualized through education and comes to know" and that knowledge is attained through "empirical familiarity with objects in this world from which one abstracts universal concepts" which is developed through a "syllogistic method of reasoning; observations lead to prepositional statements, which when compounded lead to further abstract concepts."

So it is no surprise that many parenting experts commonly debates over the “nature and nurture” educating concept.

What do you mommies out there think, whether “nature” or “nurture” dictates our traits and behaviours?

From many parenting books, we learn to know that “nurture” commonly refers to the the environmental factors that influence one’s character, while “nature” represents the idea that heredity is the principle determinant of human traits.

Many believe that at birth, the human mind is a tabula rasa and that most traits are adopted during one’s life. To the contrary, many others believe that a person’s traits and behavior are preordained by heredity.

So what? Anak monyet tetap anak monyet? Anak pencuri tu tetap mencuri juga? Does the sentence sounds familiar to you?

In my honest opinion, such a categorically partisan decision cannot be logically made.

We have seen several aspects of a person’s character have been scientifically proven to be caused by ancestry. Some people will say, “Sebijik macam Papa dia masa kecik dulu”. But there are times we also hear people saying ,“Mana belajar perangai tu, Papa dia time kecik dulu tak pernah buat perangai gitu”. So its safe to conclude that clearly, genes and environmental signals equally contribute to behavior.

From my reading, there are some traits that are purely hereditary. However, most of these clear-cut traits are physiological, having to do with the body. Examples of genetically controlled traits include vulnerability to diabetes, eye color, and ear lobe detachment—things that are usually static after birth (excepting plastic surgery of course). Environment does not have any imminent effect on these hereditary traits.

Another relatively clear-cut trait is religion. Statistically, most children adopt the religious ideals of their parents. Even after the natural stage of doubt that comes with adolescence, most people will return to their parents’ religious preferences in adulthood. This parent-child influence practically defines the “nurture” argument. Parent-child religious trust is something that can only be established during development. Even if a person decides to observe a different religion than that of his parents, the “nurture” argument is still being proven: it suggests a lack of trust and reinforcement, or a desire for independence.

So practically... Almost everyone would conclude that the behavior of the parent causes the outcomes in the child. The parent’s behavior usually does cause the outcome of the child (unless they live apart from each other).

So children live what they learn, right?

Another interesting case of the nature vs. nurture debate would be free will. Do people really control their own decisions? Are a person’s choices genetically preordained, or are they shaped by his environment? Can people really be blamed for how they act?

While only a few traits apply to either nature or nurture, most belong to both at once. The fact that environmental forces actually trigger genetically-based reactions reinforces this theory. Heredity and developmental experience work in sync with each other.

Therefore, it is erroneous to say that dominance belongs to one or the other.

If the question of nature vs. nurture was asked of me, I would reply that the answer is “a fair mixture of both.”


Ely Hasrul said...

part sami byk ckp papi ckp ikut i..hehehhehe

Drama Mama said...

good sharing, thanks! kena buat prangai elok2 pasni nanti anak ikut

yatie chomeyl said...

i pon nk jwb mcm u. fair mixture of both hehe.

nadnye said...

hihi.. sama la kita..
kedua-dua memainkan peranan yang penting...
peranan dan contribution ibu bapa paling penting dalam pendidikan anak..

Mommy Stephanie Liah And Daddy Remy Rizal said...

yup!agree w u babe.mmg betul!

asniza said...

salam... sangat baik :-)
setuju sangat dengan mamamiya...

itu sebab imam al-Ghazali mengatakan bahawa mendidik anak 20 tahun (atau sikit kurang/lebih) sebelum dia lahir... bermula dengan mendidik bakal ibunya... ya kita lah tu....

dan paling best ayat Quran yang sangat fofular tu... “Sesungguhnya Allah tidak akan mengubah nasib suatu kaum kecuali kaum itu sendiri yang mengubah apa apa yang pada diri mereka ” QS 13:11

dalam Islam juga ada qada' dan qadar yang wajib kita imani...

saya juga percaya, manusia mempunyai sikap dan perwatakan yang berbeza (keras, lembut, baik, rebellious dsbgnya).. tetapi ALlah kurniakan akal supaya mereka tidak berlebihan dan tidak merosakkan diri mereka sendiri... banyak kalau nak disenaraikan kan...

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Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor nor am I a lawyer. I am not a scientist nor am I an expert. I am just a wife and a mother, who is putting her thoughts and findings in a blog. All of the posting on this website & my blogs were written by me for educational purposes and as my sentimental library, but are not meant to diagnose nor treat any medical disorders. Any other materials that I may have quote from other published materials are for educational purposes only and not for any other manipulative reasons. Anyway, whatever weird stuff that I published are the real stuff that I believe works for me. Tips and tricks that might work for me. You are free to put it in your head if you thinks its valuable, but if you think its rubbish... Please don't mock me. Do please shut your pie hole.
FUCK YOU UP!!! son of a bitch