Jun 2, 2015

The perception of selfishness

I often joke about being selfish. Although I don't consider myself excessively so, I think I am selfish to the extent that humans should be from the evolutionary point of view. I blame most of it on my body, which probably doesn't yet realize that I am part of a sentient species that has socially leapfrogged. The body forces us to eat when it's hungry, forces us to sleep when it's tired, and forces us to feel edgy when it feels threatened.

From a moral perspective, however, the way we behave toward others is more worrying. What's even more alarming is the way the friends that we care for a lot behave toward us. Most of them, regardless of how much ever they seem to and profess to love us, seem to be only behind furthering their own agenda.

A typical example is correspondence. We initiate communication with them expecting them to respond in kind. We take the time out to list down all the necessary points that you deemed as important to communicate. We hit send and wait. They may not even respond in what could be considered a socially acceptable time frame, considering the urgency indicated in our communication.

Assuming they do respond, we end up feeling that they have done it in a hurry. The manner of writing seems careless and they may not have addressed all the points we raised. More importantly, they may not even have given the accurate emotional weighting to our points.

Who is to blame? No one. At any point in time, they have pressing demands that occupy their attention and priorities. Would these demands result in them surviving the lion that they just encountered in the savannah? Probably not. But their bodies and minds still make them do the things that might make them more evolutionarily fit.

They may be busy interacting with an online acquaintance that, on the basis of the sensory inputs that their brains receive, may help in them being able to further their genetic pool. They may also be busy responding to social media comments on something that they posted. Of course, not only that they don't want to be an outcast in their social media band, they also want to be leaders of their respective bands.

Our ego is what your body/brain makes us believe is the most prioritizable thing. As part of it, we become selfish, at least from the social and moral perspective, because human brains and minds have woven a story so far advanced from the biochemical mileu that their bodies are immersed in. The best that we can do is to accept this phreno--physiologic gap and move on with life.

Yes, we should forgive friends who seem selfish. We are probably doing even worse, relatively. That's right, folks, because right now, I'm finishing this post on my blog because I think this is the best that I can do to climb a rung up in my social ladder.

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