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Saturday, March 4, 2023

From Cynicism to Hope: A Love Story About Helping Others


When I first met my wife Angela, I had a somewhat cynical view of human behavior. I believed that, ultimately, everyone was motivated by self-interest, even if that self-interest was hidden or unconscious. And while I had always tried to help others in my own way, I couldn't help but wonder if my actions were ultimately selfish.

But over time, Angela helped me to see that there was more to life than just looking out for ourselves. She showed me that helping others could be a truly selfless act, motivated by a genuine desire to make the world a better place. And she helped me to see the hopefulness and positivity that comes from believing in the inherent goodness of humanity.

One of the things that Angela taught me was that even when we help others, we may still benefit from doing so in some way. For example, we may feel good about ourselves or strengthen our relationships with others. But this doesn't mean that our actions are ultimately motivated by self-interest. Rather, it's possible to help others in a way that is genuinely selfless, motivated by a desire to make a positive difference in the world.

And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that Angela was right. I began to see examples of selflessness and kindness all around me - in the actions of strangers on the street, in the efforts of volunteers and activists, and even in my own small gestures of goodwill.

Of course, there will always be those who are motivated by self-interest, and there may be times when we feel like we can't trust others. But I truly believe that if we approach the world with an open heart and a positive outlook, we will find that there is more good in the world than we might have thought.

Ultimately, I believe that whether our actions are motivated by self-interest or not is beside the point. Whatever the reason, I think it's important to remember that helping others is a fundamentally positive thing to do. While it's true that there may be some self-interest involved in helping others, that doesn't mean that our actions are any less valuable or meaningful. What matters is that we are making a positive difference in the world and doing what we can to help others. 

Also the the consequences of a cynical philosophical perspective can have negative consequences. If we assume that everyone is motivated solely by self-interest, we may become closed off to the idea of helping others or of being helped ourselves. We may miss opportunities for connection and for making a positive difference in the world and become misanthropic. 

So if you're feeling cynical or jaded about the world, I encourage you to take a step back and look for the good. Remember that even small acts of kindness can make a big difference, and that every person has the potential to make the world a better place. And if you're lucky enough to have someone like Angela in your life, who believes in the power of selflessness and kindness, hold onto them tight - they may just change your perspective in ways you never imagined.