Altruism. It’s a funny word isn’t it?
It is a word that means unselfishness which in turn means doing something without thinking of one’s own benefit. It is a good notion no doubt but I have reasons of not trusting the existence of altruism although I myself have gone through this so-called altruism.
I believe that things happen for at least a reason. War occurs because of greed and prosperity exists because of greed too. Hate is caused by jealousy and love is also, not jealousy but again, greed. With three to one, it is safe to claim that the world is based on greed. Greed is everything.
Take this for an instance – the United States without covering its intention wants to attack Iraq and thank god the world stands in the US way. Russia on the other hand is against any unilateral action against Iraq. Vladimir Putin does this not because he hates the American but instead, it is about money. Iraq owes Russia billions of Rubles, and if the US was allowed to invade the gulf state, Russia thinks Iraq won’t be able to pay up the Russian. The Muslim nations on the other hand are against the US move since they are jealous of US. Plus, seeing the US gaining the riches of the Arab is the last thing they want to see. Therefore, in the end a war based on greed was prevented by greed itself.
Greed’s hand is far reaching. War was prevented by greed and this simply points to another uneasy thinking – peace is also greed. It is only during peace our so-called needs and wants could be satisfied. Needs and wants are economy’s complicated term for greed. When you are in a class, certainly it will be troublesome to hear supply and greed instead of hearing supply and demand.
When we sits in a class especially business related, we are learning Greed 101 or greed 345 in reality. Sure, some of you say I sit in the class to further my knowledge which in turn will benefit the society. Sure, I will respect you for that but somewhere in the way, you will earn fame and money while serving the society. And isn’t that the true goal of us learning? To earn respect, power and money no matter how hard you deny it? See, even when we are doing a virtue, in the end, it is greed along, like Satan in the mask of an angel.
Love is a virtue too but trust me, it is no shorter than greed. Love is a greed of owning someone else, to have the other’s tender and kindness without sharing it with another.
Greed may well perhaps gave birth to socialism and communism. These two ideas are against greed but they themselves reflect the greed and jealousy of the lower class. They are dismayed with the greed of the upper class because they themselves want that richness and power. Therefore, while democracy is the upper and middle class’ greed, communism is the lower class’ greed. (After years of reading nonsense, I still can’t draw a clear line between socialism and communism. I once remember the difference but now, I’ve lost it)
Religions are against greed as far as my knowledge enlightens me. But yet, religions promote love and stuffs that would promise the believers a good health in the afterlife. Of all virtues, altruism in religion’s sense is the closest you could get to the real meaning altruism. Nevertheless, one that practice altruism has the greed for the afterlife. So, no matter how hard the believers say, in a way, being a believer is caused by another kind of greed.
“It’s too bad the world is based on greed.”
- Papa Roach, Between Angels and Insects. 2000