ALTRUISM. A Chapter on Something I Know NOTHING About… but will by the end!
- the belief in or practice of disinterested and selfless concern for the well-being of others.
“some may choose to work with vulnerable elderly people out of altruism”
Altruism is characterized by selflessness and concern for the well-being of others. Those who possess this quality typically put others first and truly care about the people around them, whether they have a personal tie to them or not.
What is the problem of altruism?
Charles Darwin regarded the problem of altruism—the act of helping someone else, even if it comes at a steep personal cost—as a potentially fatal challenge to his theory of natural selection.
Okay, so altruism, is it a positive or negative thing. This really interests me because I was referred to as a true “altruist”. So, now I need to research to check out if they were being nice to me, or snarky. The first definition made me smile, but, that went downhill quickly! So I did some research using quite a few websites, to find out if I am actually a good person, or a big phony!
I found this on thegreatergood/Berkley hoping the liberalism of Berkley was not within this meaning. “Altruism is good for our bottom line: Studies suggest that altruists may reap unexpected financial benefits from their kindness because others will feel compelled to reward their kindness; other research has found that donating money to charity might make corporations more valuable.” Financial benefits? You should see my checking account!
Further research: Is altruism a form of egoism?
Altruism, in other words, does not exist. … This third form of psychological egoism would admit that sometimes one of our reasons for acting is the good we do for others for their sake; but it claims that we never act for the good of others when we think that doing so would make us worse off.Aug 25, 2016. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/altruism/
I’m starting to feel like the worst, best person ever!! Maybe it’s the influence of all this political correctness updated, which will never let me feel that I am, in some ways, a good person. Or, maybe I’m not! Onward HO!
There is a very interesting article on www.positivepsychology.com on altruism. It is called “What Is Altruism in Psychology”. It’s a good read, and I am going to highlight some things from this article without plagiarizing the author Jeremy Sutton PHD. I have contacted him about using pieces of his article in my book.
So, now I am a bit conflicted on my altruism. Me, I think being a kind and helping person, with no financial gain, to ‘atta girl’, no name in lights, comes from your heart. I think being a decepWhat Is Altruism in Psychology? 8 Inspiring Examplestive person, doing things for self-gain, for ‘atta girls’, for your name in lights, so to speak, comes from a dark part in one’s soul. Is this from reading and research? Yes and know. Dr Jeremy Sutton, in his article What Is Altruism in Psychology? 8 Inspiring Examples, one chapter wraps it up in a nutshell.
Pure Altruism: A Philosophical Take
Effective altruism Acts of altruism not only include those to help another or improve their wellbeing, but also to reduce their chance of being harmed.
For example, taking extra care driving near a school does not directly benefit a child, but reduces their potential for harm (Kraut, 2016).
And yet, life is messy, and often so are our motives.
The driver may be acting altruistically by taking care around the school, while also showing some self-interest. They are perhaps driving slowly to avoid accidents and possible reputational damage or to escape a ticket for driving too fast.
Pure altruism occurs when there is a single motive.
If the driver’s only goal is the safety of the children, with no benefit to themselves, then the behavior is considered purely altruistic.
So, in your life, when you perform an Act of Kindness, is it out of pure kindness, or out of what good could the outcome be if you do this? I must admit, I don’t know of very many people that are out looking for a pat on the back, or a recognition in the papers for the things they do! In our world today, if you are the one performing criminal acts, as opposed to the one keeping the world in order, the criminal gets better press than the ones that put their life on the line every day, in order to keep order. The ones out there fighting for goodness in our world, and the ones out there who are on the front lines every day, protecting, healing, loving, giving of themselves to the vulnerable, we never hear about them! We never hear how Doctor So-and-so, risked his life to save another. On the streets, overseas, in Afghanistan, in the hospital. But we hear over the top about this one or that one that was in the wrong but things went terribly wrong. I am a proponent for Wounded Warriors and Tunnels to Towers. Avoiding politics and policies, I want my altruistic tendencies to show kindness. I want to believe that not everyone is out for something selfish.
It’s often been said that it’s better to give than to receive, but did you know that this cliché is actually backed by research? While many of us feel too stressed and busy to worry about helping others with their burdens—or would like to think about doing good deeds when we have more ‘spare’ time, energy, and money—altruism is its own reward and can actually help you relieve stress.
Altruistic acts can improve your quality of life in several ways and are absolutely worth the effort. Here’s to the majority of us ‘being in it for the good of others’!!
So, to all of my Altruist’s out there, let’s keep making people’s lives just a little bit easier! Here’s to ALL of the unsung heroes!