Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Importance of values in our life

Someone sent this comment on the Blog posted by Dr. Lee Kum Tatt’s wife:

“With the present trend of couples (or may be juz ladies) in Singapore not wanting to have children, furnishing the excuse of “career”, I am surprised and amazed at Mrs. Lee’s credentials.

Not her academics, but her life. 4 children?! With a successful career, and a supportive wife. I am interested in her views and thinking. Is there anyway to obtain a copy of her books?

Here are the answers given by Mrs Lee Kum Tatt.

Tan Kin Lian


Importance of Values to Our Lives.

Why do modern couples shun having families? Many want the benefits of having spouses but not the responsibilities of having families.

In modern times some do not see the joy and benefits that families can bring to their lives, now and when they are old.

We belong to the “old” school. We treasure our family and give it priority over everything else. This is our value system. Without this we are nothing. This is our mind set. This gives us the peace of mind and the happiness we need to do what we have to do.

Others have their own priorities. In our effluent society there are many things people can enjoy. There is nothing wrong with this provided one is conscious of the consequences of one’s actions and not be a problem to others including our society and community.

It is tempting to want to be like the “Joneses” but to blindly chase after money to get the five C’s as soon as possible at the expense of other just as important values has to be seriously looked into.

Singapore is already feeling the problems faced by other effluent societies like care for the senior citizens, higher divorce rates, more choosing to remain single and others emigrate to other countries.

One of the common complaints is the costs of some of their basic needs like the car, the house or the condominium are beyond the reach of many, especially the young. The problem is real. The question is “what can they do about this”? Many are shouting for help.

The widening income gaps between the haves and the have-nots which we accepted as inevitable does not help either. This inequality between those who have inherited the new abundance and those who merely witness the promise without sharing in its fulfillment should not be left unattended to. This can cause problems for Singapore.

The next question is how did I solve my problems?

I married Kum Tatt when he was a “pauper” – a person with only a body and soul, a pair of hands for working and brains to think. No 5 C's. I was not supposed to expect too much. Whatever comes out of our union is a bonus which we both treasure. This is how we live our lives.

We are appreciative for the opportunities given to us. We are not wealthy but we are rich in the sense that our few needs have been met. We are at peace and happy with what we have. We are in our golden years now. Our mind set makes us what we are.

How can you get a copy of my books?

My books were written five to eight years ago and they are only meant for our family members. They contain many parts which are quite personal. It is part of their upbringing and the value system we tried to impart to them.

We do not expect every family member to accept our values and philosophy now. We do expect that with time and age they will see the wisdom in adopting some of the time honoured values which may appear to be outdated to the present generation. I hope I have answered the questions.

Engeline Lee
(Mrs. Lee Kum Tatt)

1 comment:

Cathie said...

Hello Lee Kum Tatt,

I am fasinated by the stroy of the gold orchid. Thank you for writing this blog.

I have a question. My father bought a gold plated orchid broogh back to Australia for me after he visited Singapore in the mid 1970s. It was in the original red box that they were packaged in at the time, with a tiny certificate inside.

Unfortunately it was stolen a year ago. I know that you can still buy the orchids new, but I want to purchase one of the original ones produced in the 70s. Is there a place or a collector who sells the original orchids? I don't mind how much it would cost.

I hope you can help, because I've been searching the internet for one. The one my father gave to me was precious to me.

Kind regards

Cathie Allan
Sydney, Australia.