One of the greatest aspect of Asia is the concept of saving face, and at the same time one of the worst social behaviors of Asia.
I consider the majority use of “Saving Face,” as being the epitome of mass dysfunctional social behavior, while a small portion is glorius appreciation of peaceful relationships.
I wonder if it was always this way… I mean what I feel is the majority...
Manila, Ermita Philippines
Sunday, August 10, 2008Blog of Andy HoboTraveler.com
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Saving Face in male - female relationships is great, there is no pushing and shoving, no picking arguments, there is always an attempt to agree, even when they totally disagree. It is incredibly hard to escalate an argument to a level of violence between two acquaintances.
On the other hand, saving face is absurdly used for dysfunctional reasons. To understand, think about the word function, a relationship that works functions, it works.
I have changed this quote from the Wikipedia.org to focus on Saving Face.
“the confidence of society in a person's moral character, while (saving face) represents social perceptions of a person's prestige. For a person to maintain face is important with (Asians) social relations because face translates into power and influence and affects goodwill.”
What is the problem, this all sounds great, in a society that does not insult, any and all people in the society can lie, or create situations that are dead-ends, there will be no telling them they are lying, everyone overlooks all lies, by default making lies easy to tell.
On the simple level, an Asian can tell you they will come over for a meeting and never show, a simple problem, yet annoying.
On the worst and horrible side of this saving face problem, they feel nobody has the right to say,
“You are a liar.”
This allows lies to flow like water, there is no need to in the least be honest or forthright, there are no repercussions. Separating the truth from the lies becomes and perpetual problem.
I am often sad, I know I am jaded, I like Asians, they are not going to make wave, and life is easy, like a well-behaved servant. On the other hand, I never trust Asian, never turn my back, and continuously double check, and never allow them to catch me checking.
If they realize I am checking, testing, they feel as if I do not trust them, and that I must… trust them, I am not suppose to check them.
Trust is never earned, while with the concept of saving face, trust is assumed even though everyone knows they cannot trust the other person.
I have experience the concept of Saving Face, it becomes bewildering difficult to work with Asians, because how do you say,
“You did this wrong, you need to fix it.”
Extreme roundabout diplomacy is needed to not offend, and to allow the irresponsible person to save face, or end the relationships, or give up, which is the easier route.
This quote indicated, to never be confrontational, and I enjoy the number of lies I get to listen too, or ignoring of real problems, the opposite of functional behavior.
“Filipino humor is rarely mean. Because of their strong sense of hiya (shame), Filipinos go to great lengths to be polite. Just as a problem should never be discussed directly, humor, likewise, should never be confrontational.”
I suppose, you want a good argument find a German, if you want a nice easy going, never be serious situation, find an Asian.
I have no idea how to be perfect without a few arguments, however passive agressive behavior has a hay day.Saving Face