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Question: Are all human beings self-centered and out for their own survival?

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posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:33 AM
alright so this is from my own experience, im currently 19 and i read various philosophies from J. Krishnamurti to Osho, Bhagvad Gita, Vivekananda and various Indian philosophies along with a few western. And i have learned alot about myself not from copying what is in those books but find out what "truth" in life is (which basically only you can find, for me is being "attentive" to everything).

Anyways, almost every philosophy in the world promotes togetherness and compassion, empathy etc for fellow human beings. BUT, do you think..that if no one else is even open any of those things you should also do it? (the system which we live in itself doesnt promote any of those, it promotes ruthless competitveness and generally to screw over the next person)

lets face it, if tommorow society collapses we know what will happen...gangs/warlords and basically your neighbour that you dont know much will come to your house with a loaded shotgun for food and his own survival....

my question is, is it even remotely possible to practice something like compassion and empathy in your life when deep down you know what every other human is?

Ill put my own example, very recently this happened.

I went back to my home country after 5 years living abroad (immigrated) to visit, and meet my dad (mum and dad are seperated) and coincidently my dad in my family's absence and my grandfather passing away, became an alcoholic. now 5 years of alcohol abuse is alot, i didnt know that itd be that bad (i knew he used to drink) but as soon as i landed i saw an old man walking towards me, really malnourished and frail and i almost started crying when i recognized him.

He told me he'd stop drinking and convinced me to come back and stay with him after my studies. When we used to talk he would say that he had been really lonely and no one was there for him (none of my relatives) , so basically 5 years in a grotty flat he drank. and now when i was there, he left alcohol all of a sudden and 6 days after me landing he started developing jaundice. Since i myself had never witnessed jaundice i thought it was just normal and it would get better in a couple of weeks. 2 days later i admitted him to a private hospital, 7 days in the general ward he was there....NO family member came.

Now, can you imagine being almost a foreigner, and taking care of your father, in a dangerous city>? travelling back and forth in taxis, sleeping on cold floors? WITH NO RELATIVES OR CHILDHOOD FRIENDS even bothering to contact you (they f*ing knew what was going on). What hurt me most was what must have been going through my fathers mind when he was conscious that NO ONE came to meet him. All of a sudden my life transformed, my 2 month stay became a nightmare, i thought i was going to go crazy, i was calling abroad to my mother and uncle that no one was helping me, and they couldnt do anything. And 5 days later my father passed away, his once really full of life character, who was fun loving and entertained people (My relatives and cousins, bought them numerous gifts etc and also helped them when in need) was all dead...lying lifeless in the ICU.

If ever i saw anyone, not even remotely related to me, in the situation i was in, i would unselfishly try to lend support even if this didnt happen to me..... but thats just me im having second thoughts that in life, should a person forget about everyone else and just look out for himself and immediate family? Because since that experience, I am completely changed, and i will never in my life look to anyone else for support, emotional, financial or anything....You come into this world alone when you are born, and you will die alone.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by the dacoit]

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:40 AM
Without going into detail I will say that I have recently had a series of experiences which left me feeling much the same way about humanity. It seems like people, even the ones we rely upon, tend to become invisible when you need them most.

But what I took away from it all is that if I allow myself to become as dispersonal and selfish as I witnessed others being then I would have learned nothing at all from my ordeal. It would be the easy way out.

So, now, when those same absentee friends call upon me, I answer as swiftly as I can and do all that I can to help. I do so without expectation or score keeping. I do this so that when I look in the mirror it will always be my face that I see.

[edit on 8/13/10 by Hefficide]

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:47 AM
I think people are too quick to give up. There's good in the world. Good between strangers is much less common than it used to be, but it is still there. You must tread carefully on your decision making when dealing with people. Though, I completely understand what you mean-it does seem that everyone is just out to benefit themselves and to them, everyone else is a nobody-but do not ever completely lose sight on what is right. If you do, then it will be gone forever. Find it somewhere, and if nowhere else, if everyone tried to find it in themselves to look out for others then we might see things get a little brighter for society.

Posted Via ATS Mobile:

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:50 AM
Yeah i understand what you mean, even when i think about it, if anyone comes to me for help, i will help them but i will never want to rely on anyone else to support me.....But it just hurts to see what Sheep people have become, to think that time and money are more important than life....

Recent trend in my former country is to kick out the old parents from their house and seize their assets through force or lawyers, and guess what...its their own KIDS doing that. so much for the ancient culture eh...theres even been murders inside families over property and money..

This new generation, mine and the ones born after me are really going to be a wise lot.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:52 AM
reply to post by the dacoit

And, basically, that's all we can do. Identify wrongs and then try to teach the next generation to not fall into them.

Then we watch as they find totally new and original wrongs to end up trapped by!

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 02:05 AM
reply to post by the dacoit

Well lets look at nature.... Everywhere in nature we see one fundamental law that is all encompassing and ruling... "Survival of the fittest"

I know this may seem harsh but it is true. We have all of these carebear folks out there that think we should all hug and make nice? That this is the right and good thing to do? Tell that to a Lion that brings down an animal and slowly devours its guts while it is till alive with no care for its pain and suffering at all.

The natural order of things doesnt care about things feelings or comfort. It is each man/beast for himself. That is why the PTB control and run so much, because they understand that fundamental concept and can think like the Lion.

Whilst we all sit around and hug eachother and talk and talk and whine and blubber.....

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 02:11 AM
reply to post by ATC_GOD

Yes, absolutely true! But even the lion, or any other group predator for that matter, cares about the well being of the pride (or pack). It is those outside of the fold who are mostly subject to this kind of stark viciousness. Occasionally, for a variety of social reasons, one of the group is singled out. But mostly it's a pack mentality.

Humans can be very much the same way. When it comes to my family and friends I am eternally patient. But to a stranger? Not nearly so.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 03:11 AM
I'm really sorry for your loss. Can I do anything for you?

Why no one else asked this is exactly the point of his post.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 07:50 AM
I help people to the point that it becomes a detriment to my own health. I'm the type of person who would split my last meal with a stranger. I've lost a couple of jobs because of it. I try to help so much that it compromises my ability to do my own job.

I've been about as low as you can go in life and seen people act in ways that turns my stomach and shortcircuits my brain. At the age of 4 I became a vegetarian because we had a large family(20) and everyone would fight over the meat. I sacrificed for the family and to this day nobody in my family knows why I really did it. Because of it I didn't get proper nutrition and grew up much smaller than the rest of my family and friends putting me at a disadvantage from the get go.

My father was a serious alcoholic and would give people the shirt off of his back in a religious based inner struggle to make up for his actions and guilt from alcoholism. So that what's I learned. You give people the shirt off of your back, no matter how much it may it hurt. Living with not doing it is even worse. I didn't know why my dad did it, just that it was the right thing to do.

As I sit here thinking about it and typing I realize now how much I am like him, without the alcoholism. I try and try to change so that my giving doesn't hurt, but I find myself acting the same every time and I'm coming to accept that it's just who I am. Philsophically speaking it wouldn't really be giving if it didn't hurt a little.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 07:58 AM
Evil is a fascinating topic, and it just so happens that I'm just about set to publish my next book, which deals with evil (and compassion, as well as a host of other related subjects). Here's an excerpt from that book, Someone Else's God.

As a way of visualizing how pervasive Evil is within this environment, I imagine that we, as corporeal human beings, are fish swimming in the open sea. The water that we live in, and depend on for survival, is made up of molecules that – instead of hydrogen and oxygen – consist of Evil and more Evil. In fact, when we breathe the water in through our little gills, instead of extracting the oxygen from the water, we extract the lesser, more benign Evil, before letting the greater, more horrid Evil pass through and back into the water around us. We do that because, frankly, it’s less disruptive to our lives, and we can focus on more lesser Evils if we don’t get bogged down in large, cumbersome Evils that will always demand a lot more from us.

From one gill-full of small Evil to the next, we make our way through life, and do our best to avoid the relative few who have made the error of taking a large, terrible Evil in through their gills. After all, if we’ve learn anything during life, it’s that the larger the Evil, the more cumbersome and demanding it will be, and that it won’t be satisfied with the whole of one fish alone. No, it’ll command the focus of as many fish as possible, until the original fish that extracted it from the water is isolated or destroyed.

I don’t know. Maybe this isn’t the best analogy – with the whole big Evil and little Evil as molecules of hydrogen and oxygen – but when you think of fish and how they live in water, breathe water, and how water is essential to their physical existence to the point where a lack of water will literally kill them, then the analogy is pretty accurate.

In fact, if you think about the percentage of fish who never, ever, leave the water for any reason, then the analogy between fish in the sea and humans in a metaphoric sea of life-giving Evil is even more accurate. And if you think about the fact that fish have no idea that they live in water – as opposed to not living in water, as if the thought that there is any other way for anything to exist could even occur to a fish – then the analogy gets really good.

The truth is that human beings have no idea that competition is the essence of Evil, or that they compete all day, every day, and from moment to moment, just like those fish running water through their little gills so that they can continue to live.

Now, imagine a fish that leaps out of the ocean. Like a sailfish or a marlin. Or maybe even one of those flying fish that do it all the time. Once a fish like this has broken through the elastic film that separates the sky from the sea, it always knows – in whatever sense of knowing that a fish might posses – that there is a way to exist that is not surrounded by, pressed in by, enveloped within, a seemingly infinite amount of water. The sensation of circulating air, wind perhaps, or maybe even the heat of afternoon sunlight, must be a revelation for such a fish that has experienced it for a brief moment as its entire body is arching through open air, above that entire universe that is the only one its ever known.

Even at the fish level of realization, that first leap into the sky changes everything, and forever for the fish that makes that leap. It’s not just the difference that comes from discovering that there is a boundary that exists around its once-endless environment, and it’s not just the obvious difference in how it might perceive its own world, relative to the existence of this new and extremely foreign world. It’s the total sensation of being in that world, and how novel the entire experience would be for that couple seconds of total emersion. Some fish jump out of the water a lot, and for no real reason other than the fact that they do. Most fish don’t, but then, would they if they tried it once? Impossible to know.

When a human being achieves an Intellect burst consisting of true compassion, it’s the same kind of experience – for the human involved in that generation – as when one of those fish leaps out of the sea and stretches out for a second in the sun before dropping back into the deep. And the analogy here is pretty good, since most humans haven’t got the inclination to take that leap, even if they’ve ever known that such a leap is possible. This moment of Intellect generation is the same kind of revelation, and the entire environment is altered for the generating human in the same way that leaping into the air is for the fish. And, appropriately, this shift lasts just as long for both fish and human, with the newly compassionate human dropping back into the Evil depths of corporeal existence before the change in environment can become harmful to it.

Yeah, harmful. I did say harmful.

(read on to the next post)

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:00 AM
Here's the last part of that brief examination....

What you need to understand about true compassion – agape Love – is that as wonderful as it is in concept, within the context of corporeal existence, it’s totally lethal in extended doses. Think of the delightful image of a large rainbow trout flipping effortlessly in the sun before it splashes back into the clear waters of a northern lake, and then think of that same trout flipping frantically in the bottom of a bass boat. Too much of that escape into the fresh air, and that’s the end of our trout. Just like it needs the water, the corporeal human needs the Evil of competition in order to survive. It’s like the weight of gravity that keeps our bones connected to each other. Without that constant resistance, we will literally come apart.

People with no external stresses will always provide their own internal stresses. No discipline, no boundaries, no active resistance in a person’s life, ever, and the developmental damage is extraordinary. Now, the Evil can, and should be, benevolent, or at least benign for a beneficial impact, but a complete absence of Evil – well, I’m not even sure it’s possible, since the human involved will at least have the Evil inclination to take food for its own selfish use. Yes, Evil is any amount of competition. Even the most insignificant amount of self-centeredness. Like I said, raw compassion (true agape Love) is completely foreign and abhorrent to corporeal life, and while it is a gift in brief moderation, you wouldn’t last long if you decided to really take it on as a lifestyle.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:14 AM
I tried to U2U you something more personal. For some reason I can't, so I will post it here.

I personally don't like people expressing sorrow for me and I have the feeling that you may feel the same, but I'm very sorry for your loss. It's heatbreaking. Your story mirrors mine almost exactly though. I know almost exactly what you are going through. If you want someone to talk to and relate with I am here for you. It's hard to find someone who not only really cares, but can actually share in your pain.

I was just watching a show and someone said something that really hit home. I hope you feel the same. "Nothing in the world is as it should be. The world is cruel and harsh, but we can't let it defeat us. That's what makes us champions. We live life like the way we want the world the be so that others can see what's possible."

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 12:27 PM
Well, to quote Gandhi: "We must be the change we wish to see in the world."
I mean, if we can't try to do what's right for our fellow humans, then how can we expect anyone else to?

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:41 PM
One page?????? Really????? Someone pours their heart out to an online culture that prides itself on helping others and this is the response he gets???? I am officially ashamed of this forum. Really. I'm almost speechless. A leopard truelly does show it's spots. Wow. All I can say is wow.

For all you truth seekers who don't want to be confused by all of the information on the net please research Fabian Socialism. It lays the groundwork for everything you are seeing today. It's the gateway to outright Communism and has been shaping society for over a hundred years(Freemasons and Shiners too for all you Mods that love to talk the talk, but don't walk the walk). Try and cointelpro me. I've seen enough evidence to file an indictment. If this guy doesn't have someone to watch his back then nobody does. It's truelly shameful. For those that did respond, good on ya mate. You are the few, the chosen.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by JackHerer4Prez]

[edit on 13-8-2010 by JackHerer4Prez]

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 08:46 PM
Most for sure, only the strong survive. Take what you need and leave the rest.

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 09:31 PM
I am deeply sorry that you had to witness the worst part of Alcoholism, the dying part.

At your tender age your Mother should have had more sense, but then it may not have been a decision you would have allowed her or any one else the option to make. You had to see him for yourself. You had to know him.

Sadly, the real truth is that you don't know him and you will never know him like the other adults in his life. An alcoholic uses people and even though they might want to give more they abuse and they use without fault. They only change when the time comes to say goodbye.

I learned from an alcoholic father. I learned from alcoholic friends. You cut them out of your life and you never look back. You love them from a distance, but by allowing yourself to open to this madness you were used even if you do not think you were.

I for one will not allow an alcoholic into my life. I actually will not allow any sort of abuse into my life. I would live on the streets rather than accept the abuse.

You do not owe this man anything just because you are his offspring. Blood is not thicker than water in the circumstance of alcohol.

Try not to blame others, instead you must respect them for being smart enough to rid the alcoholic out of their lives. Alcoholics are users! Helping them is like helping the Devil himself. You must instead give your energy and time to those worthy. Now you will live with this forever and you will think everyone else is worthless for not caring, but they cared enough to say NO MORE!

It doesn't mean you should give up on Humanity, because there are plenty of people who really need help in this World. However, since this is a trauma for you and you seem very vividly oppressed by the thought of others not helping I am afraid you may have to go through this again, because until you can separate the alcoholic from the human you will not learn. This man did not deserve you at this time and he was selfish for putting you through this. What a Bastard he was!

Normally I would never speak so frank and negative about such things to someone so young and obviously so fragile in emotions, so please forgive me for being so truthful. I wrote this as an inspiration to JackHere4Prez, who seems to think the lack of response is no one caring. We do care. I care, I care enough to tell you these things, even if they seem hurtful. So thanks Jack you really know how to encourage reality where it hurts. Maybe people like me wouldn't respond because we know better. Perhaps encouraging a new friend is more productive than speaking to ATS members who would rather pass on this pain.

[edit on 8/13/2010 by Greensage]

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:25 PM
reply to post by Greensage

whoa dude, I never said that the lack of response meant that nobody cared. Classic cointelpro. I basically said that most people(who are active here daily, for clarification) have not responded to offer him help. There are many, many, many threads with less content that hit the front page in 2-3 hrs. that are complete lies and rubbish, but there they are, headline news. This young man( I'm presuming) pours his heart out about his problem and how it relates to modern society and you can here crickets.

I don't type as well as I think, so I apologize if my intent did not come across clearly. My intention was to show that on a day to day, majority response basis to these type of threads is sad. Check out what you see on the front page and compare it to this persons problems.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by JackHerer4Prez]

posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:42 PM
reply to post by the dacoit

Sandf because you make a good point
The veneer of civilizatin is very thin.
While there are a lot of people who are that self centered.
but most who make it through the first hard season of SHTF will come to the realization that they just can't make it singularly on their own.
(see my sig)

There are some who are not out just for their own survival...
People with a death wish - specifically those that commit suicide by cop for instance.
Mothers and/or fathers with children...
People who don't like to masturbate will probably try to save at least one member (ahem ) of the opposite, or in some cases the same sex...
( remember the big acrobatic mohawk dude and his little boy toy in Mad Max?)

Many people need to be told what to do so they will follow someone who tells then to.
There are already pre formed gangs that will hang together to a certain extent...because they are already backs to the wall...

You will get the odd lone wolf though...

I read somewhere that man does the best when in extended groups of about a hundred and fifty people.
blood is thicker than water...

I expect things if the SHTF to break down into tribalism...
because it always did before.

posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 12:42 AM
[edit on 14-8-2010 by the dacoit]

posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 12:52 AM
reply to post by JackHerer4Prez

hey thanks but dont feel too bad for me, it doesnt bother me that people didnt reply, my main point and thats why i took an example of my own situation was that just the way things are going, and what people have become in todays society is pathetic.

if you look at the past in almost every country, there was more of a feeling of togetherness between families, peoples and neighbourhood, and now all of that is gone....

no one gives a crap about anyone now a days, and that is not a generalization..its just the way we have become...

before what happened to me, i was under the illusion that everyone is innocent and really deserves to be helped in times of need, not so much now...this whole system we are born and bred into has gone through everyones psychology and basically transformed everyone into ruthless, cunning and really selfish lot...

people in society are only united when they are opposing something common, lets say the bad governments, otherwise no one would really give a damn about other people

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