Friday, April 13, 2007

I'm selfish!

Have you come across any day where you've NOT heard- "He's so selfish." or "I've never seen anybody as self-centered as her before!". If you haven't, then you must be in heaven. I hear these everyday. I come across various so-called "selfish" people everyday. Heck! I'm one of them!
The Oxford dictionary defines selfish as: concerned chiefly with one's own interests or pleasure actuated by or appealing to self-interest. So if you do anything that gives you pleasure, well, there you go, you're selfish. Over the years, I've been the selfish one in the family. I always do things my way irrespective of what others feel about it. I've always put ahead my interests before others'. And my priorities are way different than most others' I know. But now, having obtained a tad bit of worldly knowledge due to exposure to television and print media, I want to question the very basis of the word 'selfish'.
Consider this. Everyday morning, a girl of around the same age as mine pushes a trolley filled with trash throughout our resedential area. She comes everyday in my house, collects our garbage and goes her way. One day she wasn't able to open our gate (our gate is a rolling gate, you know the one with little wheels. It wasn't greased properly so it was tough opening it.) Me being strong helped her push open the gate. She collected the trash from the backyard and was about to go her way when I stopped her. I gave her a bottle of cold water, a few fruits and sweets. She smiled at me, maybe wanted to say thank you but din't know how to say it. She continued with her work and I went back inside the house. Ok, in the above situation, when I helped her and saw her smile, I was happy. It gave me pleasure and satisfaction. So you can think that what I did was in my interest. So would you call me selfish?
Just think about it. This whole word revolves around 'I', 'me' and 'myself'. We do everything we do to satisfy our ego. Everybody is selfish. Some people's selfish deeds help others, some people's hurt others. Thats the difference and we always have a choice. In this ocean of human beings we live in, where everybody is essentially a Homo sapien, the only unique, distinct thing we possess is our individuality( and our DNA but it doesn't help if you have a monozygotic twin). And us being selfish gives us an edge over others and helps us preserve our individuality. So the next time you wanna call somebody selfish, call yourself a hypocrite first.


sudipta32 said...

Shruti your words are obviously correct.One thing which I am amazed of is that till now I wasn't sure of what "Selfishness" imply.Infact,to be be more specific,I was not thinking the way you wrote but now I have understood it.Thanks a lot Shruti and I would rather say that on Friday,the 13th you seriously wrote something which is highly relevant.Kudos to you.Keep Goin!!


Nice writing... You do beat about the bush but come around eventually.

fijul said...

i dont think what you did would count as selfish . i would rather call it more like impulsive good natured behaviour or instinctive innate behaviour . Selfishness arises when you deprive somebody of something for your own benefit . not everythin that gives you pleasure can't be called as selfishness . consider this scenario --> you see the setting sun standing at a beach a very beautiful scene and your heart is fillled with joy . where is the selfishness in it? . but at the same time if u were standing and enjoying the sunset when one of your friend's had asked you to help him/her out , now thats selfishness . anyway nice perspective

Shripad said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shripad said...

I dont think there is anything wrong with being selfish as long as somebody else is not at loss(either by action or inaction).
I would like to add a quote by Joey from the famous sitcom FRIENDS which goes something like "There is no selfless good deed!"