Many Asian societies are more left-wing-driven than western ones, with mentalities of questionable economic sense at times, nevertheless works due to the cultural thinking differences. Most noteworthy is the greater praise of collectivism versus individualism; general Asian society’s acceptance versus one’s own. For many on the surface, they are enriched with happiness to be accepted and praised within social circles, but deep inside there is much misery due to the lost opportunity to discover their own passions, love, and greater economic opportunities.
The typical Asian life timeline is well known to be strictly structured, and is as follows:
- Study hard to do well in elementary and high school to get into an elite university with a prestigious reputation, so that the rest of the family can showcase this achievement to their social circles and for personal fulfillment within the family. Only a prestigious university is acceptable; less-reputated universities are viewed as inferior for those who were not bright enough to be admitted to the big name schools. Blue-collar careers are viewed as inferior fields for those who have failed to perform academically because of lack of intelligence, even if they offer superior economic opportunities and happier lives.
- Study hard in university for maximum academic performance and to ensure graduation, at any cost. Select a field other Asian people opt for, because the logic of an Asian person is often superior, and/or because other Asians do so.
- Look for white-collar job with the most prestigious-sounding title possible, so that at any social gathering that is like an awards banquet, it can be bragged about.
- Lease/buy a Mercedes Benz, BMW, Audi, Porsche, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Bentley, etc. as a status symbol to show your perceived success to your Asian social circles. Leasing is most common and newest year is most desirable to display maximum wealth, and the new car smell is desirable for obvious reasons.
- Marry an Asian person from a wealthy family, because Asian is [supposingly] the superior race.
Many of the above are indeed questionable for very obvious reasons, but the average person seeks social acceptance, especially within the immediate family they love. Nobody wants their friends, family, and other social circles to view them, and/or their children, as inferior. No one wants to be disowned by his/her family they love.
White-collar prestigious education is almost like a religion in Asian society, so to disobey your parents and not obtain one is akin to a child not growing up to follow the parents and family’s religion. And because other Asian people also follow this pseudo-religion, they desire this sense of belonging.
Risk aversion is also stronger in Asian cultures than western ones- this is observable even in lifestyle choices, as Westerners are more inclined to participate in “riskier” activities like riding motorbikes, snowboarding, skydiving, surfing, shooting guns, racing, unprotected sex, sex with strangers, etc.. On average, western society saving rates are also lower for this reason. For instance, the average Chinese person saves around 50% of his/her income, while in western societies living paycheque to paycheque is commonplace, albeit not for everyone. There is a greater emphasis on “living [current] life to the fullest“.
With respect to education, going to prestigious universities to acquire an education catering to a white-collar job, historically was the safe path to financial stability and prosperity. It is just in recent and present economic times that credential inflation and changing labour demand and supply has dramatically altered this. But, due to typical higher Asian risk aversion, many are less willing to embrace this reality and look to another career choice (though the costs of many other alternative ones are much lower, and hence a lower direct financial risk).
In regards to dating, historically in many Asian cultures divorce was viewed as unacceptable, and commitment much more emphasized. So at one point, to marry someone outside was to risk a divorce. However, the rapidly improving economic conditions have allowed many spouses (especially the younger, less experienced) to be less reliant financially on each other and so can more freely date many people and/or leave an unhappy partnership. Socially it has also become more acceptable to casually date many different people. In major Asian cities the divorce rates are almost in-line with Western ones and people freely hook up and date multiple people on a regular basis.
Many Asian people are also just extremely nationalistic and believe in their own race as superior. Again, because it is Asian society’s expectation to date within your own race and to share these beliefs, it is expected of you. No one wants their social circles and the family they love to disown them- they want to bring someone in that everybody accepts, and whose family also likes. It is like wearing a sweater and jeans in a room where everyone else is in a suit and tie.