There is no such thing as a truly selfless act.
Whenever you commit some act of charity, you do so in order to give yourself some level of psychological satisfaction - to provide yourself with your own "happy ending". In this sense all of human nature is based on an irresistible urge to benefit the self. Even Suicide is a selfish act; when the japanese suicide bombers of World War II steered their planes into american ships they were not truly doing it for the emperors glory, but to satisfy their own desire to have lived a worthy life in the eyes of their peers. Pure greed.
This claim is ultimately true.
If somebody doesn't like to act selfless then they won't. If somebody does like acting selfless then they will. That is the deciding factor for somebody acting selflessly or not.
I think the reason people want to dispute this claim is because they feel that it invalidates selflessness. But who cares why somebody acted selflessly? Regardless of motives, selflessness will always have the same moral value.
"In this era of ready made 'truths', self is just something used to preserve those positive emotions that you occasionally feel. Another possibility is that self is a concept you borrowed under the logic that it would endow you with some sense of strength..."
"From his cradle to his grave a man never does a single thing which has any FIRST AND FOREMOST object but one—to secure peace of mind, spiritual comfort, for HIMSELF."
- Mark Twain, "What is man"
>guarding outpost at night while platoon is asleep
>spot group of insurgents creep up
>if I sound the alarm I will be shot at and in all likelihood die but the platoon has a chance to return fire and survive
>There is no such thing as a truly selfless act
How's that edginess going
Who would want to live a life in which you were constantly racked with guilt and grief?
Regardless of your beliefs of the afterlife, many people would happily die for something they believe in.
The soldier guarding the outpost has been brainwashed into believing that saving his friends is a morally righteous act. The soldier knows that he will be remembered as a hero if he dies for his fellow soldiers.
>He sounds the alarm knowing that his death will secure his popular memory.
>HE. IS. GREEDY.
"And, to conclude the matter, what is even an eternal remembrance? A mere nothing. What then is that about which we ought to employ our serious pains? This one thing, thoughts just, and acts social, and words which never lie, and a disposition which gladly accepts all that happens, as necessary, as usual, as flowing from a principle and source of the same"
Best to do the right thing in any circumstances, even if you won't be remembered at all.
>Best to do the right thing in any circumstances, even if you won't be remembered at all.
And yet those who do the right thing in any circumstance do it because it satisfies their need for spiritual comfort with their life.
But the guy I quoted would think that obtaining "spiritual comfort" is pointless, and that you should do good things because it's simply your human *duty*.
It's hard to do things selflessly, but I think that's the ultimate test in life.
you are so blinded by morality that you dont realise you are just an animal.
Most animals dont try to save other animals from pain.
The universe is entirely blind to emotion.
Just because you believe that "the righteous act" is something worthy of preservation does not mean that nature does.
Nature dont give a shit.