The Good Things We do - Tree of Souls - An Avatar Community Forum
Tree of Souls - An Avatar Community Forum
Go Back   Tree of Souls - An Avatar Community Forum » General Forums » Debate

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-23-2011, 11:29 AM
Tsamsiyu
Theorist wants to go to all the go inbetweens
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 511
Default The Good Things We do

So, I've been thinking: When we do something "good" something genuinely "good" that one can't really argue is bad, like sharing your lunch with someone who doesn't have one, offering someone a ride home who needs one but is too shy to ask, talking to a kid who is being left out, picking up litter. Whatever, it is, big or small, it could be joining the peace corps to help people in less fortunate countries, or it could be donating your 40 cents for lunch-milk to charity.

When we do these things, ultimately, donating that 40 cents ends up making one feel better than if they drank that milk. When we include the kid who was left out, it ultimately makes us feel better because we don't feel bad for the kid, and we feel good that we included him.

Well then, when we do these things, how can one be sure he isn't simply doing them for personal pleasure, instead out of genuine love and care for the people the good deed is helping?

I'm not sure, sometimes I know I genuinely care for the person, I can tell because those are my only thoughts in doing what I do, but sometimes I'm not so sure. Thoughts?
__________________
"Pardon me, I wanna live in a fantasy"

"I wish I was a sacrifice but somehow still lived on"

It seems like everybody is moving forward. As if there is some final goal they can achieve and get to. I don't get it though. When I look around, it seems like I'm already there, and there is nothing left to do.

"You think you're so clever and classless and free, but you're still ****ing peasants as far as I can see."

I wish I could take just one hour of what I experience out in nature, wrap it in a box, put a bow on it, and start handing out to people

Nature has its own religion; gospel from the land

I know I was born and I know that I'll die; The in between is mine."
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 09-23-2011, 12:02 PM
Advent's Avatar
Mother Falcon
Advent is feeling bittersweet
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Somewhere home
Posts: 2,972
Default

I think everyone does good things in mind of other people, but it's undeniable that people feel good about it afterwards. I think the motivation is often for personal feeling (unless of course, in situations like serious relationships), but the act itself is always for another.

I remember I read something before that suggested optimistic and altruistic people often lived long, happy lives - survival of the nicest.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-23-2011, 12:37 PM
Pa'li Makto's Avatar
Palulukan Makto
Pa'li Makto : Once ate an octopus.
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,909
Default

^ This is a great response, it's similar to what I was thinking as well. Often we do good deeds without a second thought because we see someone in distress or in a bad situation and needs help and we react and help them. Of course if you look at sociological conditioning you could argue that we are made to feel like we should help someone in a society such as ours like when our parents teach us right from wrong and we see cartoons where there is a good moral message to help us. This helps to reinforce our behaviour in a way, also we could be made to think that if we don't help someone then no one else will, which is why you can see people looking around to see if anyone else might step in but then they will help when no one else makes a move to help.

However, I think that we would automatically step in to help someone as you see this happening in places throughout the world, even when their values and societies may be different from our own.

Ultimately I'd say that we have an innate desire to help others which is humanistic in nature, ie it's something that helps to define humanity. Although some people can ignore this impulse, we often do it without thinking of reward or regard for ourselves. It's only after when we get a good feeling that we say to ourselves, "Maybe I'll do that again."
Of course when that time comes again, we may not even be thinking that in our minds when we help someone because normally when someone needs help it's a sudden thing and you just go and help them.
__________________
Always listening to The Orb: O.O.B.E...



My fanfic

"The man who learns only what others know is as ignorant as if he learns nothing.
The treasures of knowledge are the most rare, and guarded most harshly."
-Chronicle of the First Age


"Try to see the forest through her eyes."

Réalisant mon espoir, Je me lance vers la gloire. Je ne regrette rien. (Making my hope come true, I hurl myself toward glory. I regret nothing.)
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-23-2011, 01:06 PM
iron_jones's Avatar
Olo'eyktan
iron_jones seldom washes his hair.
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,882
Default

Perhaps we achieve self pleasure because it's a natural effect of doing the right thing. So everybody wins!
__________________

Misery Forever.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-24-2011, 02:37 AM
Tsamsiyu
Theorist wants to go to all the go inbetweens
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 511
Default

Do you think that it takes away from the "goodness" of a deed if one only does it for personal pleasure. If we are merely a being seeking pleasure and that so happens to come in the form of doing "good?"

Like if a Cancer Awareness Campaign needs to find someone to fund them, but the only company they can find is a cigarette company, so that company gets its ads as the sponsor of the Cancer Campaign, is the campaign the same? Or is it slightly diminished?

I know it's not exactly the same as good deeds, but I'm kinda troubled by the fact that my good deeds might be merely selfish. If being selfish ends up making you selfless, but you are ultimately seeking selfish pleasure, is it the same? I'm kinda troubled by this.
__________________
"Pardon me, I wanna live in a fantasy"

"I wish I was a sacrifice but somehow still lived on"

It seems like everybody is moving forward. As if there is some final goal they can achieve and get to. I don't get it though. When I look around, it seems like I'm already there, and there is nothing left to do.

"You think you're so clever and classless and free, but you're still ****ing peasants as far as I can see."

I wish I could take just one hour of what I experience out in nature, wrap it in a box, put a bow on it, and start handing out to people

Nature has its own religion; gospel from the land

I know I was born and I know that I'll die; The in between is mine."
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 09-24-2011, 03:06 AM
Advent's Avatar
Mother Falcon
Advent is feeling bittersweet
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Somewhere home
Posts: 2,972
Default

Think of it this way: regardless if you do it for care or just pleasure, at the end of the day, somebody will be grateful for your kindness. I find that to be well worth the cost.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 09-24-2011, 09:13 AM
Human No More's Avatar
Toruk Makto, Admin
Human No More has no status.
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: In a datacentre
Posts: 11,751
Default

You can't. Saying people don't do it for personal pleasure is devaluing it, because some people do.

Helping others is done with the expectation of reciprocity when needed, and is even seen in animals, but some people do feel good for having done t, which is a motivation in itself.
__________________
...
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 09-25-2011, 01:28 AM
Pa'li Makto's Avatar
Palulukan Makto
Pa'li Makto : Once ate an octopus.
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,909
Default

I don't help people expecting or hoping that they will help me in return.
I just help them because I see that they are in trouble. I'm sure I'm not the only one who does this either.
__________________
Always listening to The Orb: O.O.B.E...



My fanfic

"The man who learns only what others know is as ignorant as if he learns nothing.
The treasures of knowledge are the most rare, and guarded most harshly."
-Chronicle of the First Age


"Try to see the forest through her eyes."

Réalisant mon espoir, Je me lance vers la gloire. Je ne regrette rien. (Making my hope come true, I hurl myself toward glory. I regret nothing.)
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-25-2011, 10:48 PM
Human No More's Avatar
Toruk Makto, Admin
Human No More has no status.
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: In a datacentre
Posts: 11,751
Default

But why do you do that? Because it gives you a positive feeling?

Whether consciously or not, that's a mental reward, because it's evolutionarily programmed as advantageous. Of course, for that reason, not only is it a good thing to do, but it also feels good to help
__________________
...
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 09-26-2011, 12:48 AM
iron_jones's Avatar
Olo'eyktan
iron_jones seldom washes his hair.
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,882
Default

So what if you feel good about yourself after helping someone? Perhaps that's the natural reward for doing good.
__________________

Misery Forever.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 09-26-2011, 04:33 AM
caveman's Avatar
Tsamsiyu
caveman dreams...
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: The Heart
Posts: 646
Default

I like the question. However, let me propose another question which I think might bring us closer to a conclusion.

If you could no longer feel happiness, would you still act kindly to others?
__________________
Stay thirsty my friends...
C V M N
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 09-26-2011, 05:12 AM
Advent's Avatar
Mother Falcon
Advent is feeling bittersweet
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Somewhere home
Posts: 2,972
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by caveman View Post
I like the question. However, let me propose another question which I think might bring us closer to a conclusion.

If you could no longer feel happiness, would you still act kindly to others?
Of course. Because regardless if you feel happy about it or not, somebody has to be the optimist in these sort of situations. Not only that, but I can imagine it would affect your reputation in the eyes of the people.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 09-26-2011, 05:40 AM
Moco Loco's Avatar
Dandy Lion
Moco Loco is a lion in a low place
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 2,915
Send a message via Skype™ to Moco Loco
Default

If I were incapable of happiness, I can't say how often I'd get out of the house, but I'd still be a nice person Or, I'd try my best I suppose. Either way, it would still be important to me.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 10-01-2011, 02:01 AM
Pa'li Makto's Avatar
Palulukan Makto
Pa'li Makto : Once ate an octopus.
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,909
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Human No More View Post
But why do you do that? Because it gives you a positive feeling?
Nope, as I've said before because I can see someone in trouble so I help them, I use empathy/reasoning to imagine how much they are struggling. There's no remembrance of positive feelings because 1. I can't remember fellings from past events very well, including positive feelings after helping someone because you don't normally get the opportunity to help people every day, which means that you can't really recall the feeling you get from helping people.

2. When people need help it's such a instantaneous event that you have to drop whatever you were doing and help so you don't have time to think "Oh I might help them out because last time I helped I got a good feeling back."

Some people might find it hard to understand but there are people out there who genuinely help because they want to, because they see someone in trouble. There doesn't have to be rewards or advantages..Some people are just helpful or naturally selfless or they become selfless after time.
__________________
Always listening to The Orb: O.O.B.E...



My fanfic

"The man who learns only what others know is as ignorant as if he learns nothing.
The treasures of knowledge are the most rare, and guarded most harshly."
-Chronicle of the First Age


"Try to see the forest through her eyes."

Réalisant mon espoir, Je me lance vers la gloire. Je ne regrette rien. (Making my hope come true, I hurl myself toward glory. I regret nothing.)

Last edited by Pa'li Makto; 10-01-2011 at 02:05 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 10-01-2011, 10:50 PM
Tsamsiyu
Theorist wants to go to all the go inbetweens
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 511
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa'li Makto View Post

Some people might find it hard to understand but there are people out there who genuinely help because they want to, because they see someone in trouble. There doesn't have to be rewards or advantages..Some people are just helpful or naturally selfless or they become selfless after time.
I like that, because I would say most the time I help someone, it just happens right away. But sometimes, I'll think like "Finally, finished mowing all the greens and raking all the bunkers I was supposed to do, now I can go home. Then I'd be driving back to the maintenance shop and see someone else hadn't finished, and think "Ehh, I should help them, but I really don't want to." Then, I'd go over and help them, even though I didn't want to. So it's not like I did it for personal reward, nor because I wanted to, just because I thought I should for some reason.
__________________
"Pardon me, I wanna live in a fantasy"

"I wish I was a sacrifice but somehow still lived on"

It seems like everybody is moving forward. As if there is some final goal they can achieve and get to. I don't get it though. When I look around, it seems like I'm already there, and there is nothing left to do.

"You think you're so clever and classless and free, but you're still ****ing peasants as far as I can see."

I wish I could take just one hour of what I experience out in nature, wrap it in a box, put a bow on it, and start handing out to people

Nature has its own religion; gospel from the land

I know I was born and I know that I'll die; The in between is mine."
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



Visit our partner sites:

      pandoraworld.ru



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 12:05 AM.

Based on the Planet Earth theme by Themes by Design


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
All images and clips of Avatar are the exclusive property of 20th Century Fox.