Societies need to have ceratin elements in order to exist. The ones that did not survive lacked one or a few of those elements or they were out of touch with the reality of the people they governed. Here are some thoughts.
Additional Needs for a Society to Function Properly
A society needs elements for it to thrive that would be food clothing and shelter. Money is a requirement in this part of the world; even there are those that can live on food stamps the society they are immersed in depends on the earning and spending of the dollar. Other functional prerequisites may also include those factors, which promote social order, in other words the institutions, customs and establishments that keep society functioning within ‘normality’. Conditions for society to function without self-destructing are what maintain its existence. Those conditions depend on the exchange and division of power, property ownership, cultural norms and practices, means of communication and a system of ethical values that can be passed from one generation to the next or within one generation.
There has to be a main value from which others are based even in primitive societies those sociologists like Mead decided to live with. People living without the written word but who passed down their lore orally did so with the thought of maintaining a continuum of beliefs. The Mohawk tribe had a tribal mother who would communicate to a newly appointed chief his social responsibilities as his ancestors had practiced them. That is what constituted a functional prerequisite of the Mohawk society. Values such as altruism is debated to be a factor, which could be independent of the functional prerequisites and relegated as characteristic of virtue as opposed to being egotistical.
The values of society can be readily noted when a person receives recognition for their life’s work. To get to appreciating this point of life it helps if one has had an education which merits an understanding of how to best spend one’s life; a life spent in the service of a society in need has always been a respected value that is passed on in time.
In the society we live in there are elected officials who represent citizens at the local, provincial and federal levels and this is an embodiment of the inherited social contract or agreement that man accepted in order to be a law abiding person respecting those political organizations.
The stress of political discontent has fanned the emergence of sub cultural groups, which do not conform to predictable law abiding behavioral patterns because of dissatisfaction with party practices, difficulty to improve the quality of their lives and so on. Being on the edge of society at times they are also at the edge of keeping up with the functional prerequisites a society can furnish; this explains why church’s have recently opened their doors creating shelters for homeless that may include member of anti-conforming sub-cultural groups.