Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#452781 - 05/26/11 08:52 AM No such thing as True Altruism
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
Altruism is the renunciation of the self where people end up doing things for selfless reasons. I believe there is never such a thing, everyone does kind things to people for selfish reasons in the end.
Religious and spiritual people are the most annoying example. People of these ideas are "altruistic" because they like to please their God and Angels, be rewarded in an afterlife, or karma will give back to them.
To me, the most noble altruism could be from an Atheist. However, I still believe each and every one of us still do good for selfish reasons. There can be no true altruism. Even a person who gets a good feeling out of being selfless, is being selfish. Good mental health and longer lives can be attributed to being "altruistic", but in the end it is still for a selfish cause.

I'd like a devil's advocate here to challenge my views, I'm hoping to find one. I like discussions with people that at least won't be jerks and get all pumped up with faith in their answers. This is the place to speak with reasonable individuals and not fraudulent faith finders.

Top
#452782 - 05/26/11 08:59 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Drake_Bamboozle Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 06/25/02
Posts: 10562
Loc: England
>> I'd like a devil's advocate here to challenge my views, I'm hoping to find one. I like discussions with people that at least won't be jerks and get all pumped up with faith in their answers.<<


Why would anyone here challenge those views?
_________________________
"Spiral Out: a bleak, page-turning, unforgettable read. Existentialism at its most hardcore" - www.uvray.moonfruit.com





Top
#452785 - 05/26/11 09:23 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Quaark Offline

CoS Reverend

Registered: 08/22/03
Posts: 8781
1. This was posted in the wrong section and has been moved to the right one. "Satanism by example" is for specific examples of - "Satanism by example" - and not for general discussions.

2. As Reverend Strongbone said, why would anyone here challenge statements that are essentially in line with the philosophy held by the members here?

You are basically preaching to the choir (boring but not too onerous), but then challenging the choir to argue with you?

I'd politely suggest reading many more threads here to better get the general tone here and better grasp the functions of this board.
_________________________
I think of the future as branching probability streams.
- Elon Musk

Top
#452793 - 05/26/11 11:41 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
verszou Offline



Registered: 09/05/07
Posts: 1812
Loc: Denmark
Originally Posted By: AdamBomb

I'd like a devil's advocate here to challenge my views, I'm hoping to find one. I like discussions with people that at least won't be jerks and get all pumped up with faith in their answers. This is the place to speak with reasonable individuals and not fraudulent faith finders.


I wouldn't say that I'm challenging your views, but one thing you might come up against is that from time to time scientists find things in nature that are altruistic, and often non-scientific people then extrapolate from that to say that this proves something on a human level.

For instance you will see individuals making sacrifices which benefits a group. This seems to be altruistic, but really isn't because it's mostly related to preserving the group, which again has much the same genes - so the apparent sacrifice benefits the lineage of the dead individual.

One interesting example were a colony of bacteria, some strain of e-coli I think that would literally explode over invading colonies while making themselves poisonous to the other colony. Dying, but ensuring that their colony had a better chance of survival. I forget the specifics, but it was on an episode of "The Sceptic's Guide to the universe".

Another example I've seen is a study on how children react. I forget the name of the psychologist who did these experiments, but he would drop a book and note how these children would help him pick it up. I've seen this study cited to prove that we are really altruistic at heart. What was left out in the interpretation though, was that the result was dependent on whether he seemed capable of picking up the book himself. Which to my mind really turned things on it's head - the children actually had a bullshit detector smile

Since the person who gave me this example was a dyed in the wool communist he was none too pleased when I pointed out that the experiment actually disproved the political point he was trying to make (not trying to make a political point here, my point is, that if you want to back your politics with scientific studies, make sure they actually do support your view smile ).
_________________________
While having never invented a sin, I'm trying to perfect several.

Top
#452804 - 05/26/11 02:35 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: verszou]
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
Interesting how you mentioned about a Communist at the end of the discussion. I made a post in questions about the Church of Satan, I'm looking forward to get a response out of it. It's for Priests of the church and higher ranked people. I'm not sure if you are one or not, but if you are, I'd like a response.

Top
#452805 - 05/26/11 02:40 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Drake_Bamboozle Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 06/25/02
Posts: 10562
Loc: England
Originally Posted By: AdamBomb
Interesting how you mentioned about a Communist at the end of the discussion. I made a post in questions about the Church of Satan, I'm looking forward to get a response out of it. It's for Priests of the church and higher ranked people. I'm not sure if you are one or not, but if you are, I'd like a response.



Users here who are Church of Satan members will have their name in orange - and beneath their name you will see their designation within the organisation.
_________________________
"Spiral Out: a bleak, page-turning, unforgettable read. Existentialism at its most hardcore" - www.uvray.moonfruit.com





Top
#452809 - 05/26/11 03:14 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
August Wolfe Offline


Registered: 05/06/11
Posts: 22
Loc: Texas Wastelands
Try and imagine what you conceive of as being the most altruistic action a person might commit. Can it be explained in any way as having selfish motive? Altruism is, on the surface, a word that seems easy enough to understand: a state of total selflessness which, usually, benefits others. There is that which resembles altruism, but is not. For instance, if the maintenance of my society, community, etc., is of great importance to me, I may offer services, volunteer duties, contribute funds or material goods to causes which may be taken as altruistic, but are they? I say no. I'm selfishly forming and sculpting my community/society to my liking. If another's benefit benefits me, then I'll contribute to that. I'm not being altruistic, I"m actually attempting to achieve my own desires. There are those in society who will gladly allow people to believe that their acts "selfless" but they wear what we refer to as "good guy badges", and flaunt them grandly.
I'd venture to say that there is far, far less pure altruism in the world than one might think, ranking it a high place on the extinction roster.
_________________________
"All right then, I'll go to Hell"
~ Mark Twain

Top
#452826 - 05/26/11 07:16 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Discipline Offline
CoS Warlock

Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 6796
Loc: Forever West
Here is a man that was a genius and just simply could not accept his own theory of natural selfishness. He killed himself trying to prove himself wrong.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_R._Price
_________________________
"I've learned . . . that life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes." ~Andy Rooney

"At last I shall have time to devote myself seriously and freely to the destruction of all my former opinions." ~Descartes

“The first principle is that you must not fool yourself—and you are the easiest person to fool.” ~Richard Feynman

Top
#452841 - 05/26/11 11:34 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: Discipline]
August Wolfe Offline


Registered: 05/06/11
Posts: 22
Loc: Texas Wastelands
I must concede that Price was a true altruist smile So, see kids, altruism kills!
_________________________
"All right then, I'll go to Hell"
~ Mark Twain

Top
#452851 - 05/27/11 04:44 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: Discipline]
John Prophet Offline

CoS Member

Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 991
Loc: My suburban lair
Originally Posted By: Article
Price’s mathematical theory of altruism reasons that organisms are more likely to show altruism toward each other as they become more genetically similar to each other. As such, in a species that requires two parents to reproduce, an organism is most likely to show altruistic behavior to a biological parent, full sibling, or direct offspring. The reason for this is that each of these relatives’ genetic make up contains (on average in the case of siblings) 50% of the genes that are found in the original organism. So if the original organism dies as a result of an altruistic act it can still manage to propagate its full genetic heritage has long as 2 or more of these close relatives are saved. Consequently an organism is less likely to show altruistic behavior to a biological grandparent, grandchild, aunt/uncle, niece/nephew or half-sibling(each contain one-forth of the genes found in the original organism); and even less likely to show altruism to a first cousin (contains one-eighth of the genes found in the original organism). The theory then holds that the farther genetically removed two organisms are from each other the less likely they are to show altruism to each other. If true then altruistic(kind) behavior is not truly selfless and is instead an adaptation that organisms have in order to promote their own genetic heritage.

This basic idea can be taken even further. For the most part, humans tend to be more sympathetic towards other mammals, than they are towards organisms with greater genetic differences than them (like insects, for example).

As for Price himself, obviously committing suicide was the most altruistic thing that he could've possibly done. I mean, it's not as though he could have just selflessly stuck it out and continued to live for the potential benefit of others, despite his own personal frustration, depression and failure.

Doing something like that would go completely against human nature. wink
_________________________


Top
#452865 - 05/27/11 12:13 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: John Prophet]
anna Offline


Registered: 09/27/10
Posts: 219
Loc: Poland
Quote:
This basic idea can be taken even further. For the most part, humans tend to be more sympathetic towards other mammals, than they are towards organisms with greater genetic differences than them (like insects, for example).


Perhaps, Price did not think about this as he could go even further in his altruism and mercifully start breeding cockroaches in his home. There would be no need for him to commit suicide as they would eat him up in the end.

Some time ago we could hear in the Polish media about crazy old ladies collecting homeless cats and dogs. Some of them, including a popular Polish singer, even built amateur shelters in their gardens. The animals suffered because of horrible living conditions and lack of medical help, the neighbours suffered because of horrible smell and the "benefactors" suffered too as this "charity" consumed most of their money. Not to mention their growing frustration and never ending quarrels with the neighbours. Well...but, at least, they were trying to help.

It never lasted long as the police and animal rights organisations always intervened, taking the poor animals to the professional shelters. Their actions were always accompanied by the loud protests, sobbing and drama on the part of the "altruists". Soon, they started picking up other cats and dogs from the streets because they had this overwhelming need to help or rather torment others. It gave them some kind of pathological satisfaction.

The same often happens when somebody tries to help other people without having necessary abilities and financial resources. It does not cost much to give a few coins to the beggar but you need to have special qualifications and psychological predispositions to look after homeless, sick or old people or educate children who have serious emotional problems.

Two days ago several Polish nuns were sentenced to three years of prison for beating the children in the "charity" school that they ran. The kids were handicapped and, apart from that, they had some behavior disorders, which the nuns lacked patience and ability to cope with properly.

It also happens that patients in the old age homes are mistreated by the nurses. There is nothing wrong with deriving satisfaction and happiness from helping other people or animals. However, people who are only willing to help but unable to do it properly, usually grow frustrated and this frustration leads to aggression, either towards themselves or the people whom they were supposed to help.
_________________________
Just gonna stand there and watch me burn. Well that's alright because I like the way it hurts.

Top
#452866 - 05/27/11 12:25 PM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Pizgatti Offline


Registered: 05/23/11
Posts: 10
I wish my someone in my family, higher in genetic order, could read this thread. Constantly taking in foster children, giving money to homeless, helping everyone and every living thing she can. Chickens, possums, rabbits, dogs, cats and you name it. She does not have the resources nor the money to do so, and requests money from others to fund this when she ends up broke with no food for herself.

It's almost altruistic, but like you say I'm sure it just makes her feel better on the inside. Of course this actually hurts her in the end. Prime Example.

Top
#452898 - 05/28/11 12:20 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
SatAnonymous Offline


Registered: 11/27/10
Posts: 85
Loc: Nowhere over the rainfall.
Originally Posted By: AdamBomb
Religious and spiritual people are the most annoying example. People of these ideas are "altruistic" because they like to please their God and Angels, be rewarded in an afterlife, or karma will give back to them.


o rly? what about eastern religions or philosophies which say there is no god or they take 'god' as a totally different way... a buddhist is not seeking or pleasing any kind gods. they are on the way to 'nothingness' or nirvana (which is actually here, but it would be a long story). they want to leave karma and reincarnation to find a state where nothing 'disturbs', in other words, again: 'nothingness'.
Or let's see a taoist who is not seeking anything just 'flowing with tao'. they don't have goals nor meanings of life.
and so on... the list is very long.

Ofc if you live in the 'western world' and give a s@1t about eastern things, you will think that there is no altruism. I prefer analyzing both sides, and then decide which are the useful parts for me.
_________________________
~ Might is Right ~

Top
#452982 - 05/29/11 09:02 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: August Wolfe]
AdamBomb Offline


Registered: 05/25/11
Posts: 75
I don't know, yes suicide can be as selfless as possible, but it does seem selfish too. If the person really wants to not live anymore and avoid stress, then it is selfish.

Top
#453023 - 05/30/11 09:56 AM Re: No such thing as True Altruism [Re: AdamBomb]
Pizgatti Offline


Registered: 05/23/11
Posts: 10
Satanonymous, they are still seeking someone for themselves. There has to be a reason for them seeking nirvana, and it sure as hell isn't "because it makes others happy". They are seeking nirvana, peace, and happiness for themselves. That's selfish. They even go and live alone away from people, selfish and not contributing at all. There will ALWAYS be a personal gain in anything you do. Mentally or Physically. You either get something, or the feeling of something.

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >


Forum Stats
12016 Members
73 Forums
43827 Topics
405222 Posts

Max Online: 197 @ 10/04/11 06:49 AM
Advertisements