Sunday, December 11, 2005

selfish.

nobody wants to be seen as selfish, yet we all are. i imagine that it is necessary to be selfish to survive. as an individual we can be selfish because we are only responsible for ourselves. this becomes difficult when we are in contact and have relationships with others. the idea of selfishness then becomes seen as mercinary and destructive to the group.
but selfish we remain.
there is something inside all of us that says, me first, and there is a big part inside all of us that nods in agreement.
so how do we reconcile this paradox inside?
we need to understand that co-operation in groups will gain us the best outcome personally.
if we take everything available and leave nothing for anyone else, we have jeopardised the group and this will adversely effect us personally in the near future. if we are antagonistic and competitive we further alienate ourselves and risk future help and resourses at a later time.
i am making a distinction between selfish and greedy here. greedy is the destructive, narrow-minded grab for everything, whereas selfish is an intelligent strategy for optimum personal benifit.
so selfish we remain but greedy at our peril.
co-operation is an investment in our personal survival. we give of our time and resourses as an investment, not with an eye to immediate and measurable return, but with the confidence that, in the medium term, there will be a balance of most benifit personally.

4 comments:

AJ said...

Dr.Alistair,

Interesting article.
I am doing research on this very thing, in that the Religious focus of it is called 'sin',and the lowest point of sin is centered around 'Satan'.
I do not know if there is actually a personal entity that is Satan or not, but it does appear there are 'evil spirits', which would proclude an entity in charge.
However my point is a rather meta-physical idea in that there would have to be a 'split', apart from perfection, to give it definition.
Any definition that is 'self-conscience' would seem to be moved by nature and the 'self-preservation' instinct.
Any construct that has any desire & (free will), will-by necessity- 'break away' from this perfection, therefore creating the idea of selfishness (sin?) into the world.
The age old story of Satan being the 'most beautiful Angel in Heaven, before the fall, gives credence to Satan consciencely 'trying' to be the most Angel. And why would He do that?
Just a thought.

dr.alistair said...

the idea of satan, in the biblical sense, is an entirely human construct,as are the gods and other entities that abound there. as in other phophetic texts that we have access to. keep in mind that we are reading a version of the bible brought to us by king james. this after many revisions and editions and deletions through history by popes and kings.

AJ said...

Dr. Alistair,

Yes,I understand, and that was my ultimate point-that the 'concept' of Satan could be misconstrued as a necessary manisfistation that was 'allowed' to break away from the Creator-or ' perfect void'.
But I respectfully do not believe that 'it'
is definately proven to be dispersonal & benign.
My understanding is that there are entities, other than human, that are
alive,

have personality,

and an agenda.

And not necessarily to one's liking.

Is this true with your experience as a doctor?
aj

dr.alistair said...

well, now you are talking about the search for truth. i think we all have to find our own truth. not wanting to sound as if i`m copping out here but it would be unfair of me to tell you what you are experiencing.
my experience has been to find that we are ultimately doing it to ourselves, for good or bad. if a person finds demons, then that`s thier tunnel reality. i can give you are inventory of my tunnel reality and it will differ wildly from the guy standing right next to me in line. that is, to my way of thinking, the true meaning of free will. not the experience it`s self, but how we react to it and how we decide we will react to things in the future. as an active participant in your life you will have that choice, each and every moment. for those who choose, it`s a great ride........ for some it`s too much and would much prefer the guidance of others.