Is it moral to "inspire" others to pursue a great cause because it'd benefit me?
I want to be rich, I want to be successful, and I want to be respected. As a result, I never complimented others because I wanted to display my status, I didn't care for wasting money because it'd cause inconveniences, I didn't respect elders because I wanted to display competence. But now I'm a little older, I'm beginning to understand that in order to be loved and respected, I needed to learn to be altruistic, frugal and humble; as a result, I started complimenting people's achievement when it was due, I no longer wasted little money on things I didn't need, and I started to respect not just elder but all human beings. All those changes are actually violating my nature, but as a result, people started to compliment me more in return, my father was willing to place more trust in me, and people no longer poked holes to my theories but to gracious acknowledge my insights. I kept pursuing these great "values" for selfish reasons. I no longer wanted fancy cars, boats, mansions, fame, and the right to make others feel inferior because I wanted all those things....but does that make sense at all?
The more I pondered about morality, the more confused I seemed to be. The pleasure Gandhi would receive from helping his nation may be more than criminals would experience when dealing crimes. To be completely selfless, is it reasonable for them to hate what they do in order to help others? If they enjoy even one bit of what they do, it isn't completely selfless. There's a saying that says people are never against you, they are for themselves. Although to group the holiest man and the evilest criminals together seems ridiculous as I consider the two types of human: A person who sacrifices his life for his family and a person who sacrifices his family for his life. The former is definitely the selfless individual who we all love and respect. If I were to choose one for my son to live abroad with, I'd choose the former without hesitation. We love and respect those who put others' needs before theirs, but I must assume, they get something much greater in return, that's why they do it. If a man died from jumping in front of a car in order to save a child, can I think there's something in his gene that dictates him to sacrifice his life that yields more pleasure than not saving that child's life? Perhaps if he didn't save the child, his guilt would ultimately ruin his life anyway? On the other hand, isn't it also possible that a gang member would do everything to give his/her children a normal life? A safer life? Can I also assume a criminal constantly risk his/her life for just mere pleasure has very low valuation of himself? Considering our species as a whole, they have no regard to their existence to the world because they believe they have nothing better to offer the world other than consuming addictive substances (for example) that ruin lives anyways?
I'd love to help everyone around me. I spend almost every waking hours thinking about how I can help members of my family to live a better life. How I can resolve conflicts, how I can inspire them to have a goal in life, how I can share my knowledge I gain from listening to all those audiobooks. I'm doing all those things to make people around me stronger and better than I am. I want to see them live a great life and thrive; their lives are more important than mine. I'm doing all those things just so I can have a great life, so I can live happily with respect, fame, and money. I do all those altruistic things just so I can feel better about myself. No matter what I do, what I think, it always turns back to being about "me".
What is being moral really?
Ancient Chinese knowledge dictates that in order to help the world, you need to learn how to help the nation, and before that, family, and before that, oneself. You must love and respect yourself before you can help others basically. I guess being selfish is necessary. What that really means is, you gotta survive first, so you can love yourself. After that, you can love others. Those who don't love others actually don't love themselves (narcissists' love for themselves stem from insecurities and not real appreciation of their worth).
When I brought my son to a playground, I have never seen a parent teach his/her child to be obnoxious or violent. We've seen that plenty in the world, but why not teach children those destructive values? As a human, we all want one thing — the prolonging of our race. We teach our children values of morality. It is a beautiful and hopeful sight. Those who don't care for others, others have little care for them. When we don't have care for others, we don't care for ourselves either. When we don't care and love ourselves, others will not care and love us.
In order to be altruistic, I thought, one must love herself to the highest level of respect, and she would treat everyone else the same way she would treat herself. "There is no selfless good deeds," as I heard Joey, from the popular TV show, Friends, claims. The best kind of altruism is "win-win" good deeds. In order to achieve win-win situations, you must cover up your most natural intentions. It may be a deceitful thing to do, but sacrificing a little morality can both earn you and others much more in return. Such sacrifice is truly selfless and admirable.