How can we be less selfless and more helpful to others?
While reading a book, I started noticing this reoccurring pattern in each section. Basically the entire book consisted of someone seeking help from other people. Whether it was a helpless population seeking the aid of their king or even a helpless king seeking the help from other people. Most cases consisted or a person in dire need seeking aid from another person. The thing that caught my attention was the fact that many people didn’t care to help people in need. Although their were someone good Samaritans, there were also some that didn’t care to help either. They were rather repulsed by a helpless person. They didn’t want anything to do with him or her. Some people even abandoned their loved ones for their own selfish purpose. They thought of themselves before others. Seeing the way the society functioned in this particular book made me reflect on our own society and how are society can be just the same way. There are many people out their who can act the same. You see it all the time on Youtube. People who run Youtube channels carry out social experiments that test humanity. They dress as homeless people and pretend as if they need money. They ask for spare change and people who walk by completely disregard their existence. It’s heartbreaking to see such thing. We live in a society of instant gratitude and we care for our own needs before others. I’m not saying everyone is like this but we’ve all one time in our lives done such selfless act. So I asked myself, “How can we have a society that is more thoughtful to others?”
Well, I found my answer in another book.
This particular book is an interesting book… It’s not like many other books. It isn’t a story telling book. It’s a book that consists of many ideas: a philosophy book.
For 7-8 years in my life I’ve been doing a martial arts. I fell in love with this particular marital art because it’s like no other. Their fundamental structure isn’t to make a lethal fighter. The goal isn’t to break bones or win tournaments. The goal is to construct a better society. They martial arts isn’t pure physical activity. It comes with philosophy. The philosophy teaches an ideal society in which everyone is helpful and caring towards one another.
Here’s some background on how it started:
Back in Japan before World War II, the people of Japan were in peace. Everyone was extremely thoughtful of one another. People more often put others before themselves than the other way around. But, after the war, things changed. People starting going rogue. They stole and it was no longer a kind society. People had more important needs in their own situations and they didn’t help each other like they used to. A man named Kaiso saw this sudden change. He dreaded the new society and did not like it. During the war he acted as a spy for the government. At one time he ended up in China next to a temple that taught a martial arts. After the war he came back knowing a great amount of martial arts. He found that whenever he would show a technique and flipped a guy, a crowd of people would be amazed. They wanted to see more. He used this and his ideas to make the current martial arts that I practice today. He made a deal with the crowd of people. If they listened to him lecture, he would show one technique. Kaiso then lectured his ideas. How society needed to become more affectionate towards others. How it needed the loving kindness it once had. After a few years an official martial arts of his philosophy and techniques was created. Now Kaiso’s ideas are recorded into a philosophy book.
I have to say that one of my favorite quotes in the philosophy book is, “Live half happiness for oneself, and half happiness for others.” It truly has great message in that Kaiso teaches how we shouldn’t live life solely for our own benefit. We weren’t put on this earth to just take. We must give back to society. In order to make ourselves better people, we must co-exist as a whole. Community work, charity work, anything that helps anyone else besides ourselves will be of great service towards others. We have to be there for each other. We can’t jus reject and abandon the ones who are helpless. It would be wrong and insensitive. In order to have a society built upon compassion and good character, we mustn’t reject others and be helpful to anyone who may need help. We have to support each other.
I also saw a movie that many may be familiar with it which is, “Rise of the Planet of the Apes.” It’s a Sci-Fi based upon apes being given this formula or chemical that makes them smart much like humans. The main ape, Ceaser, was explaining to another ape a basic concept. He took a stick and broke it. It snapped very easily. Then he took many sticks, and it didn’t break. The basic idea that when alone, we are weak, but when together, we are strong. He is right. If we live in a society in where we all support each other, we will be much better off then being separated and alone.
We have to train our minds to not think of ourselves. We have to be able to be compassionate towards others. Once we can do that, society will be a great place.