Monday, February 13, 2012

Enlightened Self Interest

What's the difference between Self Interest and Enlightened Self Interest

OK, this is a bit metaphysical but I need some definitions - don't care if you think I'm wrong as long as you understand that when I say X - someone can translate that to Y if that's what they call it.  Claiming that my X isn't really X and there for wrong is semantic bullshit, and I'm not interested in that.

For starters, self interest implies a self, and existance - so a bit more than I think therefore I am.   More like - I exist, there for so do all physical objects - the world is not a figment of my imagination - neither are you, which should make you happy.   If I die, you don't go with me, at least that the way I'm playing it.  Goes along nicely with the Objectivism - Existance Exists - I exist, you, the world, all the physical stuff I interact with - it exists.  Seems pretty simple, until you realize how may man years have been spent trying to decide if perhaps we don't really exist - waist of time, if we don't it's all irrelevant and thinking about it is irrelevant which makes all those arguments irrelevant - So There!

It also implies that I have an interest in myself - call it self preservation, or a need for Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness - same thing.  Seriously. With out Liberty and the ability to pursue happiness, self preservation is rather pointless.

Right - so I exist, you exist, the world exists and we'd like to have Liberty and be able to pursue our own happiness.   If that's the case, then what I do affects you - perhaps not directly but since I interact with the world, and you are of the world, my actions affect you, your actions affect me - we are connected simply by existing. Huh We are all connected - no touchy feely required, it's just part of that whole existence thing.

What's the difference between self interest and enlightened self interest - I think it's mostly the acceptance of that connection.   I don't necessarily need to worry about being compensated directly.   If make the world better for you, I'm most likely making it better for me too.

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