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Lay this to rest: Ego vs Selflessness

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posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 03:13 PM
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Snarl not, if you are all 'for' doing selfless acts! And snarl not, if you are all 'for' doing egotistical acts!

Lets look through all those claiming they are selfless indirectly, who may be actually perpetrating the funk as certain would say. Lets see who has been pulling legs, so to speak... Answer the following questions ONLY. Saying anything extra means you put your self up and beyond the simple instruction.

Part A:

1. Who is important? Me or you?
2. Who do you respect? Me or yourself?
3. Who would you save from great trouble? Me or yourself?
4. You find 100 million in cash... Will you, with ego or selflessness, leave it there, or take it and keep it, or turn it in to the police?

Part B:

Or, you could skip all those questions, and state you are with an ego, and admit, whether or not, that you've been only indirectly making it seem like you are with selfless acts. And even further... you can just skip this entire thread, and let that be your indirect way of letting it be known that you are not with selflessness and will, with extreme ego, not admit anything with an attitude.

Note:

I'm not made a condeming-type judge of you.
You can be you around me. So let your trueness shine without giving a whoot about what anyone may or may not think about you.
The only persons that can be your own judges are yourselves. And I am aware certian may snarl at what I say or me, reguardless, since they have an anger issue that is not their fault. If that is you, then you should state that before responding if you cant help yourself. In fact, you should make such a point in everything you do when in communication with others. If you cant responsiblely deal with your anger issue, only you know you have, then how are others you think going to handle you? So get a clue, and expercize some wise responsiblity.


[edit on 16-10-2008 by Mabus]




posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 03:33 PM
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I will answer with this: I am egotistical

We are all egotistical, we perform selfless acts to appeal to our own egos.

Example: "why did you give that homeless guy 5 dollars?"

Answer: "it made me feel good"



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 03:40 PM
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ill go with all egotistical too

ill go with Dawkins selfish gene here

we are designed for living in small groups

if i help people in my small group survive then they will in return help me survive so i can reproduce

the size of the groups have changed the behaviour hasnt, that person may no longer be able to directly help me but i get a reward from my brain for helping(feel good endorphines) and others seeing this may be more inclined to help me



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 03:44 PM
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reply to post by Mabus
 


Loaded questions with no real outcome other than being egotistical.








[edit on 16/10/08 by carslake]



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 06:39 PM
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Wow! Have you guys ever heard of altruism, or compassion?! I admit that 95% of the time I am, to an extent, selfish. 4% I am more selfless, but take into consideration that my action will provide good karma or whatever. There are, however, times when I do things for people that may or may not harm me, that I really don't care about getting kudos whatsoever. I don't think it's possible to be selfless on a continual basis. I think anyone who says they are is a liar, and not a good one, but there are times that I can be quite selfless without registering being so. Just seems like the common sense thing to do at times. Am I alone here?



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 06:46 PM
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Originally posted by ExistenceUnknown
Example: "why did you give that homeless guy 5 dollars?"

Answer: "it made me feel good"


You could add to this a bit with your reason as to why it made you feel good.

Did it make you feel good knowing that someone less fortunate would maybe perhaps have a warm meal, or a beer..........whichever he preferred and because it is a genuinely caring thing to do from one person to another?

Or did it make you feel good because you did something to be proud of yourself for or to "look" like a nice guy?

It isn't quite that cut and dry, but I agree that there is usually a pay off in some form for reaching out in that way.



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 06:51 PM
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Originally posted by Mabus
Snarl not, if you are all 'for' doing selfless acts! And snarl not, if you are all 'for' doing egotistical acts!

Lets look through all those claiming they are selfless indirectly, who may be actually perpetrating the funk as certain would say. Lets see who has been pulling legs, so to speak... Answer the following questions ONLY. Saying anything extra means you put your self up and beyond the simple instruction.

Part A:

1. Who is important? Me or you?


Don't know you, me. Reason, you are trying to make me sound selfish and people who promote selfishness are less valuable to others than people who do not.


2. Who do you respect? Me or yourself?


Myself, this is a ridiculous question, and you have not earned my respect.


3. Who would you save from great trouble? Me or yourself?


If you were the mother of my child, you. If I was a body guard defending a President, not my own life. We do die for each other. Me or Yourself? I would at least try for both.


4. You find 100 million in cash... Will you, with ego or selflessness, leave it there, or take it and keep it, or turn it in to the police?


Give a percentage to charity or throw a bit of a party, or both.



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 06:59 PM
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reply to post by interestedalways
 


It is that cut and dry though. People only do things that somehow will satisfy themselves in the end. This sort of reminds me of that episode of Friends where Phebe is sort of disgusted with the idea that we can't do anything that isn't egotistical, and she spends the episode trying to disprove Chandlier I think it was , doing a bunch of different things. But yeah, can't get around that we do things ultimately for our own enjoyment.

This is why charity work is sort of bogus. When I was in my early teens and stupid as all teens are to some degree, I used to think God appreciated my good works helping the poor or whatever. But whether you do it or not, all depends on what you ultimately will receive. So it isn't caring for others or altruistic. People that do charity work aren't "holy" either like people like to think they are.

[edit on 16-10-2008 by ghaleon12]



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:01 PM
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i]reply to post by interestedalways
 



which ever way you go on that the pay off comes with your brain giving you a healthy dose of feel good

its a natural response you get rewarded for it

the reason you did it and that you will tell others if asked gets made up later by yourself to explain it away



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:09 PM
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I do have to admit that I feel good when I give the homeless guy money as he sits by the stoplight on my way home from work.

Never the less, I am glad that it makes me feel good to do so and that I don't think that he isn't "worthy" of charity and that I don't judge him for what he chooses to do with the money.

It makes me feel good about myself because it feels good to make others feel good.

Of all the ways to feel good I think this is a good way to fire them chemicals!



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:17 PM
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Hogwash. Yes good deeds feel good BUT the reason to do something for someone else is not always the expected good feeling, it's because you feel for the other person and the good feeling afterwards is not always the INTENDED result but could be a nice side-effect for the done deed.

Yes, with good deeds a good nice fuzzy feeling inside of you comes with it but not everyone is a good-feel addict and does things in the light of altruism. Even made a topic about it
Altruism does exist


Originally posted by Harman
Altruism on wikipedia

Altruism is selfless concern for the welfare of others. It is a traditional virtue in many cultures, and central to many religious traditions. This idea was often described as the Golden rule of ethics. Altruism is the opposite of selfishness

And the point of discussion here is the following


According to psychological egoism, while people can exhibit altruistic behavior, they cannot have altruistic motivations. Psychological egoists would say that while they might very well spend their lives benefitting others with no material benefit (or a material net loss) to themselves, their most basic motive for doing so is always to further their own interests. For example, it would be alleged that the foundational motive behind a person acting this way is to advance their own psychological well-being ("good feelings").


Well, my point in this matter is that altruism does exist. Ofcourse people will get a good feeling about doing something for someone else but that is a side effect of the motives from a altruistic person. If something is done from a altruistic standpoint we have to take the feeling before the act into account and not only the feeling after. What i mean is that there are persons on this earth that act pseudo-altruistic i am not denying that but do not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

I think that people that are truely altruistic act on a gnawing feeling before doing something for someone else and that is the thing that drives them. You could say that the fact that anyone that acts to eleviate a bad feeling beforehand is the same as people going for the good feeling after the fact but i disagree on that one because almost every action we do concsiously is out of emotion and there are more than enough people out there that do not get any feeling of sympathy for another and do not have to act on it whereass a person that does get those feelings have a harder time ignoring them.

discuss



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:34 PM
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It's sort of a rule: For a person to perform any action, there first has to be a deficiency. How can that be anything other than egotism? You can't feel anyone else's deficiency other than your own.



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:45 PM
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Yes you can feel another one's deficiency unless you have a form of autism maybe, or just don't give a rat's behind. I can see the deficiency of a single welfare mom with 3 kids, i can see the deficiency of a child-soldier in Africa, i can see the deficiency in any suffering person, if i only look. And so can anyone else.



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 07:58 PM
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You can see how others might be deficient but you can't feel it. Can you feel how the mom feels when you do a good deal for her? Nope, only your own experience. There would be no action unless you felt deficiency within yourself and the action would satisfy that feeling. This is why "good deeds" don't really exist. All you are doing is pleasing yourself. Mother Teresa was no holier than some drunk sitting on the couch watching football.


[edit on 16-10-2008 by ghaleon12]

[edit on 16-10-2008 by ghaleon12]



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 08:18 PM
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"We begin every act of choice and avoidance from pleasure, and it is to pleasure that we return using our experience of pleasure as the criterion of every good thing."
-Epicurus



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 08:44 PM
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I agree with what Harman said.

All of us don't live simply through the brain and a pleasure reward system.

You are eliminating the HEART and the feeling of LOVE.

It is through intentions of the heart and the awareness of the suffering of another that allows one to give freely.

If that happens to feel good it is icing on the cake, but not necessarily the CAKE.



posted on Oct, 16 2008 @ 09:07 PM
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Lets say you take away the icing, which is "feeling good". Would the cake (action) still be there? I don't think anyone would want that cake, it would turn from being a tasty chocolate cake into a not-so-palatable mud cake, all depending on the icing. Strange how the icing determines the nature of the cake.



posted on Oct, 17 2008 @ 12:06 AM
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Originally posted by interestedalways
I agree with what Harman said.

All of us don't live simply through the brain and a pleasure reward system.

You are eliminating the HEART and the feeling of LOVE.

It is through intentions of the heart and the awareness of the suffering of another that allows one to give freely.

If that happens to feel good it is icing on the cake, but not necessarily the CAKE.


Excellent reply. Could not agree more!

This is sad to say, but realizing that many people here have quite an analytical mindset, it seems possible that some people posting are using their brain too much, and out of alignment with their heart. Im not going to put any labels out their, as I think they are only detrimental and besides the point other than a judgmental generalization, but geez people altruism DOES exist. I guess it is rare, perhaps it's why my heart hurts so much looking around at peoples actions and intentions.

These responses actually make sense. A lot of times when I do something just out of the perception that we are all one being, ie conscience, I get disgusting looks from people. I guess they assume I am being overly egotistical by doing something nice?! Freaks me out to see people at this level of understanding and lack of compassion, but it seems like it's everywhere! Are we still living in the dark ages? I'm not sure sometimes.

Oh and btw, in response to the whole icing/cake analogy. I have done MANY things that had an overall negative effect on me, yet continued to do them because it was bettering the overall situation. As in, teaching the effected person, healing them etc. Perhaps this is too off topic, and I might get some bashing for posting this, but I have given energy to people because I could tell they needed it, while having an after effect of being drained, exhausted. These things happen all the time. Most people are constantly raping each other for energy. It's insane!!

[edit on 17-10-2008 by unityemissions]

[edit on 17-10-2008 by unityemissions]



posted on Oct, 17 2008 @ 12:49 AM
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Its surprising to me that people think they can do an action without receiving some benefit. Even if you were to cut off your arm right now to disprove me, you made a calculation that disproving me would bring you more pleasure than having your arm....for whatever psycho reason. Or you see someone hurt on the side of the street, you go to help because you will feel better from helping them. The other option would be leaving the person, but then most would feel guilty. It's basic nature and it is really the truth, I don't get why its so shocking that we can only do things that satisfy ourselves, its sometimes called "the will to receive". Even if you were to give up a lot of time and energy for someone, and you felt absolutely tired afterwards, that option you calculated would be better than not giving up the time and energy.



posted on Oct, 17 2008 @ 01:28 AM
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Part A:

1. Who is important? Me or you? Both.
2. Who do you respect? Me or yourself? Both.
3. Who would you save from great trouble? Me or yourself? That depends.
4. You find 100 million in cash... Will you, with ego or selflessness, leave it there, or take it and keep it, or turn it in to the police? That depends.

Part B:

Or, you could skip all those questions, and state you are with an ego, and admit, whether or not, that you've been only indirectly making it seem like you are with selfless acts.
_______________________________________________________________


Of course I am with an "ego." Every human is. Including the "saints."

Here is the thing with "Self-lessness." It doesnt mean that you do not have an ego, or have a natural impulse to want to preserve yourself. It does not mean that you sacrifice your interests to others and martyr yourself always.

Why? Because if you think about it, martyring yourself (if you do it as a rule or dictate) is actually an act of elevating yourself. What you are saying is, "I, in my infinite goodness will sacrifice my self for you."

What the spiritual traditions are aiming you towards, is not mindless martyrdom, but a recognition that no one is higher, or lower, than another. Including yourself. You are not more expendable, or less expendable than any other. It is trying to show you that the greater good is what one should consider, in the specific set of circumstances you happen to be in, rather than a rule such as, "I must always act in my own interests" or "I must always act in the interests of someone other than me."

The reason religions have failed us is simple. They offer us fixed rules, set-in-stone dogma, where the dictate of the Divine is "discernment in the moment."

Being selfless does not mean always being willing to sacrifice your physical self for another as a rule, it means to be willing to put aside the ideas of your mind, your ego, and let the voice of the Divine guide you to do the right thing for that moment. To be "self-less" in the act of listening to the Higher Self. It doesnt mean that your own ego will not protest the whole time, it means following the dictates of that higher Self despite the protest of the personal self or Ego.




[edit on 17-10-2008 by Illusionsaregrander]





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