Alturism: Does it truly exist?

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buckeyeboywonder
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Alturism: Does it truly exist?

Post by buckeyeboywonder » Mon Mar 19, 2007 5:37 am

We have discussed this in one of my college psychology classes, and I'm curious about YOUR opinion.

Alturism is helping someone with no personal gain or benefit. There are some scenarioes where we give and get nothing in return, but actually our ego gets a tiny "self-esteem" boost for helping someone, or if we listen to someone who wants to talk, we feel "joy" for allowing them to vent to us... aka it seems like every action has a reaction.

So my question is... do you think true alturism exists, or do you believe everything the majority of people do is ego-based to benefit their compulsive ways?

And if there is true alturism out there, what is an example and how did the person not receive any 'benefit' from their action?

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Mike
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Post by Mike » Mon Mar 19, 2007 10:17 am

Would Mother Theresa not have been an Altruist?
"A quiet mind is all you need. All else will happen rightly, once your mind is quiet. In the light of calm and steady self-awareness, inner energies wake up and work miracles without effort on your part."
- Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

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Narz
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Post by Narz » Mon Mar 19, 2007 10:37 am

I personally don't believe true altruism is possible. People who give either do it because it brings them joy or out of some sort of sense of duty.

Not that there is anything wrong with that. If we're all connected than serving the whole also serves the self (the larger, connected self).
“Seek simplicity but distrust it”

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Post by eseward » Mon Mar 19, 2007 1:09 pm

I agree with Narz about this; if we are inspired (i.e. motivated from within) to do things "in the flow of the moment" rather than for ego-aggrandizement, we enjoy the doing, even as others often reap benefits. Sort of a win-win. Doing things for ego-aggrandizement is seldom as much fun in my experience.

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Post by maunamrita » Mon Mar 19, 2007 3:07 pm

i honestly feel the "absense of the desire of self gain" can only exist when the "indivudual self" itself doesnt exist, in this case, any action without the sense of identification with "body-mind" complex would be altruistic..because any action, however "selfless" one may think it is, if it comes from the idea that "I am so and so doing such and such action", how can it ever be right action or in this case altruistic action?

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Post by eseward » Tue Mar 20, 2007 2:31 pm

"A man who does good does not go around contriving to do good. His own goodness does good wherever he goes, though few realize it. Being one with goodness, he has no separate self-image of being a good man..."

Vernon Howard

fnktrry
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Post by fnktrry » Thu Mar 22, 2007 2:22 pm

Mike wrote:Would Mother Theresa not have been an Altruist?
Mother Theresa believed in heaven (everlasting paradise). So no, she was doing it for everlasting paradise.

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Post by Blenderhead » Thu Mar 22, 2007 3:23 pm

Altruism exists.

If your actions are based on thinking and wanting to get a certain result - mind projected future - then they will be egoic. But if your actions come from stillness, there can be no motive. Since there is no thought, there is no mind projected future. The act then becomes altruistic.

Mostly this happens spontanously, people suddenly do something without thinking about it, like jumping into a lake and saving someone from drowning. I read a story about a man, who saved some children from being run over by a train. He didn't think about what he was doing, he just did it.

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Post by fnktrry » Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:11 pm

Blenderhead wrote:Altruism exists.

If your actions are based on thinking and wanting to get a certain result - mind projected future - then they will be egoic. But if your actions come from stillness, there can be no motive. Since there is no thought, there is no mind projected future. The act then becomes altruistic.

Mostly this happens spontanously, people suddenly do something without thinking about it, like jumping into a lake and saving someone from drowning. I read a story about a man, who saved some children from being run over by a train. He didn't think about what he was doing, he just did it.
That's genetical imperative. You could by that same explanation say that a soldier that gave his life in war by slaying his enemies was altruistic.

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yougarksooo
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Post by yougarksooo » Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:29 am

I agree with Narz about this; if we are inspired (i.e. motivated from within) to do things "in the flow of the moment" rather than for ego-aggrandizement, we enjoy the doing, even as others often reap benefits. Sort of a win-win. Doing things for ego-aggrandizement is seldom as much fun in my experience.
Well said. Altruism is a concept. It's mind food. It is an attempt to take out of fragment of life, put a label on it, and then pass it off as truth or knowledge or understanding. And so it takes me out of felt oneness the minute I start conceptualizing about what it is and whether it exists, and whether it is absolute truth. It's nothing more than a thought, which carries with it a lot of other thoughts such as "am I altruistic?" "am I self-centered?" Humans endlessly chasing their own tails in an attempt to find themselves.

Eseward's words ring true because, strangely, LOVE (for lack of a better word---but you could call it "being") that looks very altruistic comes through once the mind stops trying to analyze concepts like altruism and we become present. It's a love that has no use for concepts like altruism. It must be felt, not thought about. This love has no questions. It isn't trying to understand itself.

Thinking about these concepts keeps me locked in self-obsession. I'm throwing around concepts based on the past and thoughts of me, all in a very un-altruistic way of trying to define myself (again, it's all about me --- does it exist? Do I experience it? Am I altruistic? Do I understand it?). This keeps me locked in thought, and unavailable to those around me.

So if we can talk about altruism in a way that points back to that love or beingness, I'm all for it. But discussing it conceptually only can be left to the professors and students. I obtained my degrees in universities where discussions such as altruism were thrown around and it kept me asleep.

I'd rather just be present and see what happens.
"When people ask me who they are or who God is, I smile inside and whisper to the light: there you go again . . . pretending."

Adya

eseward
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Post by eseward » Thu Apr 05, 2007 4:12 am

yougarksooo wrote:And so it takes me out of felt oneness the minute I start conceptualizing about what it is and whether it exists, and whether it is absolute truth.
:D :D

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Re: Alturism: Does it truly exist?

Post by joens » Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:00 am

Yes it does, and the wisdom of it is that you can't keep anything unless you give it away

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