Altruism is defined as, “selfless concern for the well-being of others”.When someone truly cares about and wants to help another person, there are three things that must be true. First, the person must choose to help others even when they have to go out of their way, and not only when it is easy or convenient for them. Secondly, the person must help even when they know that they will never get recognition or credit for it, helping even when nobody else is around. And lastly, the person must never expect a reward or anything in return.
I try my best to live my life in alignment with these characteristics of altruism. I have gone out of my way many times to help others when I have not received any type of recognition for it, and of course I do not do it expecting a favor back in the future. I’ve always been there not only for my friends and family when they need help or advice, but also for people I barely know, for simple things like giving rides and covering a coworkers shift at work. And I do notice now how few people are altruistic towards me; in fact, the only person that comes to mind is my own mother.
I am not quite sure what the whole point of this post is exactly, but it is something that’s been on my mind lately. Why do I want to be altruistic? Because I am finally happy, and there would be nothing better than to see others moving towards this same feeling. Does the fact that I’m even writing this mean that I am expecting some kind of reward or recognition in return for my kindness? Maybe. But I know that this is not possible. It is a sad truth of life that one really cannot rely on another person for anything. I will continue to live my life this way even if nobody else knows or does it for me. What can you do anyways, besides blog about it and then get over it?
Altruism is the ultimate form of love in in our existence away from God, in this world and in our lives. And for many, it a foreign concept so far gone, that they do not even realize it is missing. What can bring a greater feeling of being alone than this?
Here is a video from the Cleveland Clinic that encompasses what it is to live with empathy, that will hopefully encourage viewers to live with open minds and kind hearts, with compassion rather than judgments.