By Khothatso Moalosi
MASERU – It is an undeniable reality that temperance has become a scarcely recognized virtue in our contemporary world. Particularly among the youth, temperance seems to have lost its significance in their lives.
First and foremost, let us clarify the term “temperance” and specify that we are discussing the issue of “peer pressure temperance.” It has come to our attention that a considerable number of individuals neglect this aspect, as the focus tends to be primarily on temperance concerning alcohol and tobacco.
“Peer pressure temperance” refers to the ability to resist the negative influence exerted by our friends or society. Saying “no” can be an arduous task, as we often desire to be perceived as “cool” or “accepted” within society and strive to fit in with our peers. However, as young individuals, we can triumph over negative peer pressure by cultivating self-control and consciously avoiding unhealthy relationships.
Furthermore, society itself imposes negative pressures on those lacking temperance. The constant allure of material possessions such as iPhones, clothes, shoes, and cars can entice individuals to succumb to temptation, potentially leading to a loss of personal identity and derailing them from their intended path. Consequently, they may find themselves unable to achieve their life goals and lamenting their choices.
Lastly, possessing the ability to say “no” can empower young people to accomplish remarkable feats in their lives, ultimately influencing their communities and even the world at large. As young individuals, it is imperative that we develop a strong moral compass and discern the distinction between right and wrong.
In summary, let us remember the words of Socrates, who proclaimed, “There is a difference between knowledge and temperance. He who knows what is good and embraces it, and who knows what is bad and avoids it, is learned and temperate.” By redefining our concept of strength and fortitude, we can overcome the negative influence of peer pressure and pave the way for a brighter future.