Chinese Cultures - Respect The Elder

  • For Chinese cultures, the oldest person in a family or an organization has the most respect, honor, and dignity.
  • On the lady's side of the house, the first elder wife holds more power than the next wives and daughter-in-law.
  • The young people will call an older person "Ye Ye" (grandfather), and "Nai Nai" (grandmother), "Tai Tai" (aunt), and "Shu Shu" (uncle) as a sign of respect even if that person is not family by blood.
  • A tradition that the people of China hold on to is taking care of your parents personally when they get older.
  • In the business world, the junior members of an organization will not make a decision without the consent of the senior member.
  • When you arrive at a meeting or banquet, you should always remember to greet the member with the highest seniority ranking at that occasion first.
  • Whatever you do, you should never interrupt the senior member's speech.
  • The Chinese people do not like a person who talks or brags about himself.
  • If you are an older lady or gentleman, you should not be offended when the people there offer to help you because in China it is a sign of respect and not pity towards the elders.
The old saying in China...

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The Chinese believe that old age is the most wonderful time of your life. There is a proverb from Confucius that best describes this idea.

"Old age, believe me, is a good and pleasant thing. It is true you are gently shouldered off the stage, but then you are given such a comfortable front stall as spectator."

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Traditionally, the oldest person in a family or an organization has the most respect, honor, and dignity. This person does not have to worry about anything when he gets old, because everything should be taking care of by his children. Best of all, this individual still holds the most power in the house like the godfather.

When the grandfather says something, the majority of the time this will be the final decision. So, if he thinks it's funny for you to run around the house twenty times, guess what, that's the final decision.

What about the woman's side, you may ask? Well, the first elder wife's commands are more important than the next wives and daughter-in-law or whoever carried the first son in the house.

The young people will call an old man or woman "Ye Ye" (grandfather), and "Nai Nai" (grandmother). Even if they are not related to that person it is a sign of respect. These same rules apply to children when they address the young adults, except the kids will call them by "Tai Tai" (aunt), and "Shu Shu" (uncle).

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