Principles of healthy selfishness: why not forget about your own interests?
In our time, selfishness is no longer called a definitely negative trait, but it concerns mostly progressive members of society. In the mass of its modern society continues to blame the egoists, who care about their own interests, but who are able to sacrifice themselves for the sake of others’ well-being calls the best of the best.
Is this position correct? The answer to this question was tried to formulate in his new book Peter Schwartz, a famous American scientist who held a high post at the Institute of Ain Rand. He managed to debunk a number of myths concerning manifestations of selfishness and to establish that any of us has the right to take care of our own interests and use the resources obtained for our own needs.
Our notion of the world around us is shaped by various concepts. However, for some reason, in the process of education, the notion of healthy egoism is often excluded from our lexicon, the very word “egoist” appears exclusively in a negative, even abusive, color.
Initially, selfishness was defined as the ability to act in accordance with the voice of reason and in personal interests. But this concept seemed to be forgotten and was blocked by another. It’s hard to call it an accidental mistake, it’s more like a deliberate distortion of facts, only altruists benefit from it.
After all, in this situation, we can not argue, since initially altruism is placed on the side of “good”, and the selfishness of “evil”, and when there is only black and white, a discussion of other colors and shades is impossible.
Who put in first place — yourself or others?
Altruists call egoists indifferent people, sometimes even unfeeling. It is believed that people who are called egoists can be interested only in money and the various benefits that they bring, that such metaphysical concepts as love and friendship do not matter to them. And egoism in general leads to misanthropy.
However, it is not difficult to see that we can be personally interested not only in material goods, but also in spiritual ones. As a matter of fact, friendship, like love, is exclusively selfish, because both friends and partners in life we choose people with whom we are interested, good and pleasant. That is, those in whom we have a personal interest. And we do not want to lose these people precisely because we need them. Is it not selfishness?
And that’s what life is all about. Do you remember how often you managed to love the first person you met? And the enemy? It would be a truly self-sacrificing act that would require total self-denial. There are very few such heroes.
After all, love, if it is real, and not contrived — a selfish concept. You can not love someone for charity, it’s not for you to give charity. We love only those who have value for us, being, in fact, priceless.