Q. Why are people so selfish?

SELFISH red stamp text

There is a whole lot of frenzy in the whole world lately to categorize people in patterns. The personality types are one way of doing it. All the time we are bringing in adjectives to mark people and admonish them into strict compartments. Humans react to circumstances and though there can be fixed pattern in our reactions, which does not mean that is what the person is fundamentally. Moreover, it is doing a disservice of another kind for a lot of people, who tend to cling to all such kind of notions as their immutable nature.

I do not know what selfish actually means. People are stupid, afraid, and insecure as a result of which they might be greedy, insensitive, ambitious, miserable, lack empathy and what not but I am not sure if they are essentially selfish. We call people selfish when they are not considerate or accommodative to our expectations or perceptions. However, in doing so are we not being selfish?

We are obsessed with making judgments specially when there is a sense of perceived loss on our side. We are blinded in the moment and can endlessly pursue that feeling without bothering to consider the point of view or reasons of the other.

There is a deep sense of irresponsibility in us. I do not mean irresponsibility in the usual meaning of the word, which is merely not to be duty-bound. We are irresponsible to shoulder our decisions and the effect it has on our lives. If the fallout is favorable, undoubtedly we have been legitimately rewarded for our efforts and choices. If not the whole creation is conspiring against us. And why people alone we can go on to blame the whole mankind or even go a little further to hold God culpable for our victimization.

At those junctures when life gives us an opportunity – to claim the selfishness in others – is verily the most blessed moments of our entire life. In these turns, there are life-changing lessons hidden for us to unravel. We must not hurry or find easy justification to such situations nor draw impatient conclusions. If somehow we can muster courage to stay with our thoughts and questions, not only will we grow in sensitivity towards others but we will also come to discover a lot more about ourselves that we were completely unaware of.

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