Honor vs. Respect

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Difference between Honor and Respect

Honor is a descriptive word that means a person is honest and fair; a person with integrity in the way they think and act. Someone with honor has a respected name and is perhaps a credit to their profession. When a person is honored, they are receiving a dignified symbol of distinction.

Respect is a word that describes a feeling of high regard for a person; to hold someone in elevated esteem. While respect is considered to be synonymous with honor, the words can be used in completely different contexts. A person can be respected due to their social position, while not honored as in the eyes of the public.

Honor
Respect

Types of Honor and Respect

The word honor can mean more than a person's worth. When a person receives an honor, they are being awarded for special service or success. If a person is honorable, it means they are chaste, pure, or favored. Judges and mayors are referred to as Your Honor, in deference to their respected title. When a person is honorable, it means to be dignified and righteous.

The word respect can mean also mean more than how a person is regarded. To send someone your 'respects', means you are conveying greetings of friendship, while to pay your 'respects means to convey sympathetic feelings. When a person is respectful it means to be polite and considerate.

Importance of Honor and Respect

Honor is an important concept that is a type of community judgment. When a person is honored, it means they have reached the peak of societal respect. To be honored is a privilege that many people covet. To earn an honorable mention, title or degree expresses a special ranking for success.

Respect is important concept as it shows courteous regard for others. It can also be a display of patriotism when you are respectful of a nation's flag, for example. Respect in military organizations is a sign of discipline and loyalty. Most religions and societies teach respect of your elders and your parents.

Cultural Aspects of Honor and Respect

Honor is an aspect of most, if not all cultures. People view themselves as others see them, so when a person lives an honorable life he or she will likely have good self-esteem. The concept of honor is perhaps a dying one in Western society, being overtaken by more individualistic concepts of conscience and personal faith.

Respect is an ethical concept of all cultures that differs by varying degrees. To be respectful of a cultures tradition means to be nonjudgmental, and not to react in a negative way to a person's behavior that is from another culture. Respect is vital to society so that the rules and order are maintained. Without respect for laws and the people who uphold them, societies can disregard those laws and plunge the society into chaos.

Similarities and Differences

Honor and respect are vital concepts for all people to understand. When people live honorably, they are holding themselves up to a degree of integrity and excellence. Honor is more important to some cultures than others, but the military and some feudal societies still place enormous importance on honor.

  • Respect is a fundamental concept that while all societies recognize, are not all the same.
  • Respecting others and ourselves is a way to maintain peaceful lifestyles and to feel good about our society.
  • Concepts such as diversity, justice, morality, and politics rely on the notions of respect and honor.

Which word ranks higher in your mind?
  • Honor
  • Respect
 
 

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