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Everyone is selfish essay

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workingonit Just gettin' started! Default Avatar
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Everyone is selfish essay Post Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:24 am
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    Human nature dictates that every action, no matter how selfless it appears, is inspired by a selfish reason.

    Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the above opinion. Support your position with reasons and examples from your own experience, observations of others, or reading.
    -----

    Some people think that people's actions are motivated by self interest. Others believe that some actions can be selfless. Admittedly, some philanthropic endeavors do appear selfless on the surface. The issue is controversial but a closer examination reveals that most actions are dictated by selfish reasons.

    One reason is that each person has responsibility to maintain his own well being. If people do not take care of themselves first, they may suffer negative consequences. For example, the German philosopher, David Throug, stated that people must be selfish because they need to protect their own life. If they truly work for others without being compensated, people would be hurt and used for others' benefits. In order to prevent self-harm, people tend to first think about how actions can help themselves. Clearly, people's actions are determined by self interest because individuals have a duty to protect themselves.

    Another reason is that people enjoy the most benefits when they achieve their own goals. Thus, the incentive to help others without helping themselves is almost none existent. To illustrate, many working individuals strive to receive promotions and climb the corporate ladder. In order to achieve their own goals, they actively try to receive recognition for their work and impress the boss. In the process of achieving his goals, a person may help others if it doesn't hurt hum and he can receive some benefit in the future. Nonetheless, people place high priority to reaching their own goals. As a result, people's actions are determined by personal goals that they set, not ones that others set.

    On the other hand, some people thank that the not all actions are dictated by selfish reasons. For example, philanthropists often donate a big percentage of their wealth to help others. While the surface explanation of philanthropists' actions may seem selfless, people who help others often do so for a selfish reason. Oftentimes, people donate money to feel good about themselves or to receive praise from their peers. Bill Gates, the famous humanitarian, once said that he chose to donate much of his vast fortune because he enjoyed the personal pleasures and recognition of helping others. Thus, even selfless actions may be driven by personal motives.

    In summary, arguments can be made for both sides but it is clear that people perform actions based on selfish reasons. Individuals must take care of themselves and actively improve their own well-being. While some people may appear to be selfless, their actions are often dictated by personal desires. Hence, human nature dictates that actions are inspired by selfish reasons.

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