I finally find the words for something that I had wanted to express in an older article about altruism. It dawned on me when I saw a post of some kind of coach who had given blood for kids. He was proud.
I wonder, if this act was so selfless, who but your self posted this picture? Who but your self gave blood? If not for your self, where would you have taken the blood from?
Altruism is not selfless. Altruism is giving. How can you give anything but that which the self possesses? How can giving be of any worth if not as an expression of that self? As an expression of the desire to give and to care?
Altruism as an identity
Andrew Wayne wrote a cool article about the ruse of identification. He brings up the example of himself deciding to use floss for his teeth. He notices how he simply does it, without creating an identity out of that act. He does not suddenly see himself as a flosser in a violent epic battle against the non-flossers.
Altruism is just like that. It is an appetite. A desire. You care about somebody and want that person to be happy. You happen to have something particular inthat that person needs. You decide to give, because you want to. Because it is important to you. And if it is important to you, that means that it is important to yourself. To your self.
Alon did not go out of his way to do something for others. He went exactly his own way, because it was what he wanted to do.
Yet he makes himself look ugly and leaks his real motivation when he goes beyond saying that it felt good and starts to lecture others to do the same.
Doing something altruistic without caring for somebody is like eating cake without hunger or appetite. It is a fix. A drug. And if you need to use this to feel superior, you have already made it obvious what your real intention was: To get approval for your noble intention.
You do something you do not really want to do only to feel superior to those who do not do it. To make them feel guilty. To be a better person than them.
But what if everybody else was even more altruistic than yourself? Would you then not naturally feel like a miserable person? Would you then start out into a competition of altruism? See who gives the most?
Altruism is an appetite. An expression of your self. And expression of your self is the greatest violently fuck a girl in another, so be it.on earth. If it means to be altruistic in a particular moment, so be it. If it means to
Shaming somebody into altruism betrays the whole purpose of it: Genuine love and care for the recipient. You can not force somebody to care, only force him to pretend to care.
To my eyes, it reads akin to: Today, I ate a fantastic cake. It felt immensely good. Another person saw it and ate one, too. As you see, eating cake is contagious. Be a good person for once and eat some cake.
Why attach your identity to that? Your goodness?
Free expression of your self means to express what your self really needs to express. If your self happens to be very altruistically inclined, express that. If not, do not. Be tolerant of those who are not so altruistically inclined as well as of those who are more so than you. Or do not be, but do not expect your inclinations to have any meaning for them.
Am I less lovable than you because I do not feel such a great need to give? Why? Why make that a measure of my worth? It is unfair. I have other needs, a different personality, my own preferences.
Do I have to live in panic of being labeled negative when I refuse something that you call positive?
Live and let live.
Why attach your identity to the act of giving? Why call yourself an altruist? Would you call yourself a cake-eater just because you like eating cake?
If altruism is selfless, whose self is left to express it? Who can express and commit altruism if not your self? Who can give if not your self? If altruism is self-less, it constitutes a force that is not requiring of human intervention. An automatic self-sustaining giving out of thin air. Which of course makes it unnecessary for anybody to be selfless, as selfless is complete in itself without anybody’s self.
Selflessness logically can not be an expression or the trait of a person – of a self. It is a contradiction, a double bind. The term selflessness is more akin to nothingness. A black and lonely void without any kind of connection – without any kind of self in it.
If altruism is selfless, there is no self behind the gift, thus there is no self to accept the gift from, thus there is no self that actually cared about you, thus the gift is empty of emotional value, devoid of respect and . Devoid of actual caring.
Selfless altruism is mechanistic and worthless and leaves both recipient and giver feeling empty. It is a gesture without intent.
If the desire to give is a proxy to the desire to be a good person, then it already ceases to be an honest desire. It becomes mimetic desire instead: Not the desire to do something, but the desire to be something.
Selfless altruism is devoid of warmth and benevolence, as only a self has the capacity to feel and express goodwill. Only a self is able to care. But a self can never be forced to care, only forced to pretend to care.
Selfless altruism gives, films the act, posts it and then turns its back on the helped and stops to care. Or ceases to pretend to care.
Altruism is not an identity. It is an appetite.
Consider the perspective of the recipient: You gave me because you wanted to be proud and society to be proud of you. You do not care about me at all. And even expect gratitude for your pretense. What an insult.
The selfless altruist, the narcissistic altruist, is a child. A child who does not think mommy or daddy will love him if he does not fulfill the ideal of the good, giving person. A child who does not think itself lovable unless it ignores its own soul and character and forces itself to be what its parents want it to be.
The selfless altruist is a betrayed person. He looks wistfully towards those who betrayed him and cries out: Look, mommy, here I am. Look how good I am. I am doing a good thing. Please, oh please, finally love me. Will you? Pretty please.
And mommy – or society – in her unending kindness grants you the pretense of love if you are what she wants you to be.
A large value of receiving a gift is the knowledge that somebody actually cared about you, not about you being a poor bastard. Not about a label or a trait of you, but about you. Would you still care for that kid if it was not poor? If it did not need your help, if it was happy? Would you still want to do some good for it?
Do not be an altruist. Do not be a selfish person either. Do not attach identity to your appetites. Be yourself. You are lovable even if you do not feel a need to give.
Giving should not be an obligation.
When two friends say to a third one: Let us go give blood to the children!
And the third one says: Nah, not interested.
His friends’ reaction should not be any different or more shocked than if they had said this: Let us go watch the new movie by Quentin Tarantino.
His disinterest is simply an expression of his own values and preferences. His personality, his individuality. It should not be used to judge or shame him, just like you would not shame a friend for not liking strawberry cake. The notion itself is ridiculous. Just as it is cruel and unfair.
Everyone has their own values and preferences. Everyone benefits others in his own way. Some people by giving. Some people by. Some by being smart. Sometimes you profit from the experience of being rejected or not receiving help, too.
Do not try to uniform and equalize people. If you want to give, do it. Do it without identifying with it. Do not do things because you want to be the person who does them, but because you feel a real to do them.
Alon, do you really care about those children? If not, do you think that that makes you evil? It does not. It is just who you are.
Do not do shit for approval. Get rid of what other people want you to do. Others want you to be altruistic? Fuck them. Others want you to be manly? Fuck them. Others want you to be successful? Fuck them.
Who defines who is a better person, anyway? Everybody has their own conception of that. For one, it is altruism. For the other, it is a lot of brutal stud. But do you want to be a marionette for your parents and others or do you want to be yourself?. In the end, it is all about the idiotic need for approval. It is not about being the person you want to be, but about being the person others want you to be. That can take any shape. For example the shape of a
On the other hand, I may be misinterpreting your words. Still, there are a lot of people out there to whom this applies, so this article is not purposeless.