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 Category:  Essay Non-Fiction
  Posted: January 13, 2021      Views: 41

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 ABOUT
ALLI JOHNSTON  

I wrote horror recreationally for years and took a hiatus for college. I am recently graduated with a BS in Equine Science and a minor in Psychology and have my own business as an Equine Sporthorse Therapist. Fantasy worlds, creepy adventures, and st - more...

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My thoughts on human altruistic behavior
"Avaricious Altruism" by Alli Johnston



We consider ourselves good people - well, half decent people, at least. Sure, we've all rounded to the nearest dollar for the donation to Ronald McDonald's House for Children and sure we've told someone "I'll pray for you" when they're going through a hard time. Nothing selfish about that, right?

Well... perhaps.

Let's talk about people who believe in God and wish to do right by his Word. Heavy topic, sure, but necessary, I believe. For example, someone may be going through a really hard time mentally and emotionally. Typically, the response is "have you prayed about it?" Or "if you follow God's Word, everything will work out, just have faith". Now sure, they might care whether or not the person feels better. It's important to note that throughout this essay, the assumption is that these underlying selfish reasons are part of the subconscious, not not at the forefront of our mind when we are acting altruistic in any manner. However, is the reason for these words always because they care and Solely because of that? Most likely, no.

Why? Well, why do believers do anything they do? More often than not, altruistic actions from believers tend to be a way to feel better within their face and set themselves up for a better chance of getting into heaven or being closer to God, or whatever other reason may be. That's not to say that they are bad people, just that there is a hint of selfishness behind their altruism. Let's take a real life example that happened to me.

I have struggled with suicidal ideations and attempts throughout my life. One of the most common responses to that (even very recently here on Fanstory) is that suicide is a sin in the eyes of God and therefore should not be committed. Hardly ever does someone give a response about the actual reasoning behind those feelings or actions. "Well I told them it was a sin, so God knows I tried". The same goes for children or adolescents, or maybe even adults, that are a part of the LGBTQ+ community. A person may offer to help them figure out why this is wrong and that they just need help or God, but completely ignore the struggles and sufferings that a person discovering their sexuality has gone through. As long as they do what they think God wants them to do, they are fine. Again, this isn't talking about every person and it is still under the assumption that it is in the subconscious. I know this is quite the sensitive subject so if you've stuck with me this long, thank you.

Now, does this mean that people who don't believe in God are truly altruistic? Absolutely not. Selfishness does not discriminate, especially subconsciously. Let's use an example that doesn't contain religion at all. This is something I have no doubts we've all seen before.

Homeless people.

We hate to see them cold, hungry, and wet on the roads with nowhere to go. It's difficult because you never know if you are putting yourself in danger helping someone, and safety should definitely come first. However, how often is it that we see videos and pictures of individuals helping people on the streets? If your nature is truly altruistic, why record? Why put these people who are clearly having a difficult time in their lives on such a public platform? Simply to show how nice of a person you are? I feel like I'm making my point here.

"Well, what about people who do things without recording or telling anyone?" You're right! Perhaps there are indeed instances where altruism is just that - pure, altruistic behavior. Or... perhaps we remember what we were told in elementary. "Character is who you are when no one is around". So, do we do these things to put a smile on our faces and know we have at least decent character traits? It's difficult to tell. The subconscious is named rightfully as it will not give you the answer.

Let's start putting ourselves in other people's shoes and doing things because of them, not for ourselves. Be kind but because you CAN be, not because you should be.

Author Notes
Just some thoughts of mine that I felt needed to be written.

Thank you for sticking through it.

This was not meant to be offensive to Christian√É¢??s or non, whatever your religion or lack thereof.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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