What Is Selfishness?

How selfish can one be? Apparently as much as one wants to be and no one can say otherwise… I had that quality in spades and used to admire it in others but recently I was proven kind of wrong…. There’s selfishness and then there’s selfishness…. Or maybe I’m just splitting hairs… What do I know?

I thought I knew aplenty but this makes me doubt a lot about myself and the world both… Do I even know what selfishness is? Are there different brands of selfishness, different levels, different intensities? How would one even go about trying to identify and classify different kinds of selfishness? Makes my head hurt just by thinking about it just as the person made my heart hurt….

One thing I do know…

Keep Walking…

Advertisements

Being Selfish…

Being selfish is absolutely fine sometimes when you can see no other way out of a situation…when being selfish is the only path available to you, you take that path…you walk it….you protect yourself….what do you do when you see others protecting themselves in a flood…during an avalanche…so all you need to do is ignore your instincts and become selfish…you PROTECT YOURSELF…And it’s absolutely fine with the society too… who ever thought of that… A hypocritical society we live in…. A society that extols selflessness as a virtue in times of leisure and lauds selfishness in dire times. So, go ahead, be selfish! Who thought there would be such commendation in something so wicked…

I had this experience in recent times… Turned to a friend when I was in dire need and my friend turned on me instead and told me to be independent and to stop being so whiny and dependent on others (others being my family and closest friends – count being 2)…basically called me a dead weight…. so here I am being selfish the way I know how to be. I have decided not to be a dead weight to anyone who is unwilling to be a participant in carrying my load of BPD with me. Why bog down reluctant people with my issues, my needs? Relationships are meant to be symbiotic not parasitic…even more so with me coz I have special needs… Of all relationships, friendship is the only one which enjoys unparalleled equal footing. When that is lost, the friendship is doomed…mine was too… So, I became selfish…already have so much load on me…then why carry one more load of a doomed relationship?

But Always,

Keep Walking…

In the Face of Adversity…

Courtesy begets courtesy. Isn’t that what we are taught in schools when we are young? What happens when we grow up? Why do we forget the lessons? Or do we forget them or adapt them as per our grown-up perspective of the situation and people involved? Obviously, it is effective being courteous to people who can understand and reciprocate in a similar vein. But what if courtesy just slips off the skin of the person who is in front of you or who takes undue/unfair advantage of your courteous behaviour? What’s the use of being repeatedly courteous to a bully or a slob who cannot or doesn’t want to change herself at all?

In social situations, you do extend common courtesy to the ones around you. But what if you have a long term acquaintance with someone and you know that despite of your courteous behaviour, the behaviour of the concerned person will not change ever and that you will have to take or handle the fall out from her actions? What do you do then? What do you do when you are stuck between a rock and a hard place? There’s no easy answer. Each handles such situations in their own unique ways. Some lose their temper, some laugh it off, some end up abusing that person – all end up unhappy! None particularly effective as none solve the primary problem.

We come to: Courtesy begins at home. Each is responsible for her own behaviour. An adult can’t be taught corrective behaviour at such a late juncture. One can advise but one can’t enforce. An adult chooses the way she wants to behave. So, if you feel so bad about someone being discourteous to you, then take a step back and think. Think if it is the fault of that person’s nature or a reflection on your own. One can only try to change one’s own habits and nature and that’s easier said than done. So, how can you expect someone else to change their behaviour overnight? Having said that, in a social scenario, one has to be alert that one’s behaviour or habit does not create nuisance for other people. One has to be socially aware and socially accountable for one’s behaviour. But, sadly, we don’t see that happening. We are so busy in our lives that we are just focused on our own tasks and responsibilities. We don’t care if we make life tough for other people. We are narrow-minded. We refuse to see the broader picture. We are willfully blind. At least, that’s what I think – when someone clearly elucidates the rules of engagement between two people, two departments, two companies or even two nations, then how can you expect amicability to exist between the said parties if one party does not follow the rules and just flouts them? Amicability can never exist between two parties who can never exist in the face of willful misbehaviour. Courtesy is shot to hell.

But then, if you cannot maintain courteous behaviour in times of adversity, then you are not a true gentleman or a lady. Courtesy is not only for times of peace. Only because one party is acting like a neanderthal, one may not descend to their level and behave in a similar fashion.

Never lose focus that human life is about self advancement, self-improvement and self-actualization. Rest all is secondary, tertiary or unimportant.

Keep trying… Keep walking…

Know Yourself…

Buddha-under-the-bodhi-tree-2-500x280

Those who are at ease with their deeds do not find any pleasure or pain with another’s criticism or praise. How does it matter what others think about you be it your family, friends or the society at large if you are comfortable in your own skin? Knowing the truth of your doings and the intention behind them births confidence in yourself. But most of the times, our own intentions and deeds are impure. We mean to hurt or harm others through them. What we forget is that to hurt or harm someone else, the impurity has to rise in ourselves first. But we cannot escape the effects of such a doing that┬áresults in stress, tension, anxiety and other psychosomatic disorders. We are always concerned with what other people think about us. We are never bothered about what we think about ourselves when that’s what impacts us the most. True peace can be found only at the bottom of self-realization. We forget this simple truth. You cannot be happy if you don’t know your own motivations/intentions behind your actions. You will remain always a scared, unreliable and uncertain shadow of the individual you have the potential to be. Knowledge brings confidence, trust and power. Knowing yourself, your motivations and intentions and being fully alert and attentive while taking any decisions and performing your deeds is the only way to happiness, peace and joy in your life. There is no other way. You cannot be blind towards yourself and still be truly happy.

Misguided happiness is not true happiness. Self delusion is not peaceful. Ignorance is not bliss. Knowledge is power. Self realization is the key. The mind is highly trainable. Train yourself to be alert every moment, to be cognizant of your every action. Don’t make any decisions blindly. Don’t perform any actions rashly, randomly. Initially, it will be tough. The mind is like a monkey but with practice comes ease.

Be alert! Know yourself! Be happy!