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Are You Guilty?

Posted By: Randy GageMarch 17, 2010

We’ve been talking about how the TV and Hollywood creative types are forever painting unflattering pictures of rich and successful people.  But have you ever given much thought to how even the mainstream financial press portrays wealthy people?

Billionaires like Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, and Richard Branson are subject to an inordinate amount of slanted articles, snarky comments or even derision.

Instead of chastising and ridiculing billionaires like Gates, we should be celebrating them.  (Just as we should be celebrating Olympic athletes, spiritual leaders, people with good marriages, and others who manifest prosperity in its other forms.)

But they are not celebrated, even in publications that are supposedly devoted to free enterprise.  The subliminal message is that their great wealth somehow comes at the expense of the poor.  And the danger of exposing yourself to this kind of input is that it creates subliminal programming in your own subconscious mind that to become successful yourself, you will have to take advantage of others.

I received a scathing message from a lady who questioned whether I share my wealth with those who are poor and only live a short drive my “lavish lifestyle. “ I most certainly do.  But I do it in accord with my spiritual and philosophical principles.

I tithe to my church, ten percent of everything I pay myself.  I also give a great deal of money to charity, scholarship foundations, and cultural organizations like the Symphony and the Opera.

Here’s the key...

I don’t do it because these organizations “need” it.  Or because it’s the “right” thing to do, or the politically correct one.  I do it because of the joy it gives ME.  In other words, for perfectly selfish reasons.

I’ve mentioned Ayn Rand before.  Ayn was one of the most brilliant thinkers in the last century; a true genius, and someone who understood the concept of value for value.  She wouldn’t call it prosperity consciousness (she was a devout atheist), but she possessed it in spades.  Her novel, “Atlas Shrugged” should be required reading, every year, for people concerned with prosperity.

Another work of hers, and the one relevant here, is her book “The Virtue of Selfishness.” If you haven’t read it, you should read it now.  When asked why she chose to use a word that threatened so many people, Rand replied, “For the reason that makes you afraid of it.”

I, like Rand did, use the word “selfish” to describe virtuous qualities of character.  How does that grab you?  Let me explain...

The dictionary definition of selfishness is basically concern with one's own interests, without regard for others. It means, I value myself first, regardless of what anyone else thinks. Notice that there is no good or evil implicit in the definition.  That, 'without regard for others' does not mean that you are doing harm to others.  It simply means that you are well adjusted and sensible enough to meet your own needs first.

Now of course that’s not the herd would have you believe...

They tell you that your moral imperative is to put the interests of the many before the interests of the one.  That you should sacrifice yourself for the “greater good.”

This idea is very dangerous to your self-esteem and your life.  Relinquishing your happiness for the sake of others, known or unknown, verifies to yourself, and others, that you are small and unworthy of even your own attention.  It’s actually anti-humanity, and it makes you crazy!

Your survival and your pursuit of happiness must form the foundation of your value system.  To make your life, by your own means, towards your own standards, and for your own enjoyment.  Anything less than that is harmful to you.  And anything harmful to the individual is actually detrimental to society as a whole.  Read that last sentence again.  Make sure that you really get it.

But don’t think the herd is smart enough to figure that out.  They’re not.

They will maintain that the needs of the individual be relinquished to the needs of the masses.  They tell you that it is your responsibility to take care of the less fortunate.  And they will try every racket they know to make you feel guilty if you believe otherwise.

If someone accuses me of being selfish, I respond “guilty as charged.”  What about you?

31 comments on “Are You Guilty?”

  1. I agree with you 100%... I put myself in first place before helping others... But that doesn't mean I don't help cause I do... Everytime a friend of mine needs help, I do it right away... Cause I know a lot of people that say they help the humanity but they don't have a real life... That means travel to different places, meet great people, hang out at night with friends and so on... I think of myself first and after I am confortable with it, I help the others... This is the joy of life... Thanks for your posts... I always stay stronger after I read them 😉

  2. Don't you think everyone is selfish, except that 'the herd' does not realize it and most certainly aren't for the right reasons? What I mean is that everyone, if they care to look deep inside themselves, is selfish in that what drives them is the feeling their actions give them.
    Why is someone crazy about their partner?
    Very simply said: Because of the feeling their partner gives them! Why do people do volunteerwork?
    Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives them!
    Why does someone donate a kidney?
    Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives them!

    So 'the herd' is lying when they say they do the things they do out of altruism. And if lying to you or me about it is one thing, they are also lying to themselves which is about the worst you can do in my opinion.

    Why do I write this reaction?
    Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives me!

  3. Funny I almost find myself at a loss for words in this one. You know, I was raised poor and programmed with this sort of nonsense.Through mentoring from greats like yourself I came into understanding that those beliefs and philosophies were totally ass backwards. And I'm sure you've noticed most of the people who affirm these beliefs are dumb, sick and broke...and totally consumed meeting their own needs.

    You and I into this scenario in our profession often, with people who refuse to approach their warm market because of the incorrect belief that they are 'taking advantage'. I impress upon my team rather that if you are going to win, you should be doing it with the people you love the most, first. And the subconscious programming that to become successful yourself, you will have to take advantage of others is totally unfounded. I believe it is almost impossible to become successful if you simply take advantage of people.

    I realize now as I become more prosperous and successful, I am able to help more people, but only because I am not consumed with meeting my own needs. It's self gratifying to wear Versace AND spare some change.

    I am able to make contributions to people and things that matter to me in ways I never could because my own needs (and desires) are met first. Guilty as charged!

    mad love to you dude. get home safe! -TS

  4. Great post randy! I love it!

    When I think of it now hearing it from your perspective it make's a lot of sense.

    We are all "Selfish" there's nothing wrong with that it's just human nature. We will all put ourselves first (in most cases) because we are us! "we are us" < something like that.

    Also I love how Dov Baron Distinguishes "Self worth and Self esteem"

    I think that by not being selfish you can hurt your self worth and self esteem both which decreases your income and confidence.

    There is so much value in understanding this information and that there is nothing "wrong" with being selfish.

    The funny thing is that if some people learned how to be more selfish they would be better givers and better at being "unselfish" as people would say.

    You can't give away something you don't have so it's important to take care of yourself and increase your self-esteem and self worth so that you can give more value back to the world.

    Great post once again randy!

    Very insightful! I think of selfishness differently now!

    Keep it up!

    David King

  5. Guilty.

    My friend, you have one of the soundest minds around, and I am constantly nodding my head when I read your stuff. I've been a fan of yours since my network marketing days. I left MLM a few years ago, but have followed you because you're a smart guy. A good guy.

    I don't agree with everything you say (I'm an atheist, like Ayn was), but I respect everyone because, for all I know, they could be right, and I, wrong. And I'm a firm believer that society would function a lot better if people were simply left alone to believe what they want to believe: i.e. treated with respect.

    I think this is best summed-up in the following line I quote from your article: "anything harmful to the individual is actually detrimental to society as a whole." And I'm convinced that humans are wired to do the right thing by themselves, with the incentive being a longer, more happier, free life.

    So I really think that no human actually wants to become a drug addict, beat people up, molest kids, gorge themselves on burgers, and set fire to churches. For whatever reason, some folks just get on the wrong track. It's up to the rest of us to help people back, and we do it because we innately know that it's the right thing to do; it feels good, and thus makes us happy - it's selfish.

    The problem is when we're forced to live in a socialist/welfare state (I'm currently ruled by Gordon Brown, apparently) where our decisions are made for us. Their manifesto is a complete perversion of our own in-built moral code, and along with the pop culture driven by the media, it can completely distort our distinction between right and wrong. And for those in our society lacking in a huge intellect, they come to rely on their government for their moral code.

    This has been the recipe for centuries, and it makes for a weak, base, brain-dumb society, overall. And it ain't gettin' any better. The thing is, any sort of large scale activism against this trend would likely meet opposition from the get-go. As you said, Randy: "But don’t think the herd is smart enough to figure that out. They’re not. They will maintain that the needs of the individual be relinquished to the needs of the masses. They tell you that it is your responsibility to take care of the less fortunate."

    The masses don't believe that humans are born good, generally. They are taught that we are all born bad, and we need government or religion to rein us in, lest we rip each other to pieces, keep all our money to ourselves, eating ourselves to death. It's going to be some task to override THAT programming. But never say never...

    Basically, what I'm saying, is Randy, you're great; good article; selfishness rules; and anarchy is the way forward.

    Amen,

    Scotty

    P.S. What a journey, eh?

  6. Dear Randy,

    >>>I received a scathing message from a lady who questioned whether I share my wealth with those who are poor and only live a short drive my “lavish lifestyle. “<<<

    Ignore these kind of people, Randy. You didn't steal someone else' wealth to come to where you're today. You worked your way up with your best efforts as well as your natural God given super ... I mean, really, super intelligence far beyond those PhD guys, or doctors. I'm very proud of you, as many are. And you have a good heart. You're down-to-earth, both funny and serious 😉 and thank you for being 'you.' There are always people out there who do nothing but digging into someone else business to come up with something to make them feel better, or get jealous of another who is doing better. It's none of their business, really.

    One more thing. I'm sure many would agree... Randy, you're absolutely great! Another great post that I enjoyed reading!! I like the way your write. -saachi

  7. I have to say that I was raised in an environment where being selfish is bad and you should always help others who have less. Basically to feel good you have to always help others and then good will come your way.

    I have been reading your writing Randy for a few years now and have come to see this world in a whole new way - one that I do think is more inline with how God wants us to live.

    So as hard as it is for me to say - "I'm guilty as charged" - or at least I am working on being guilty!! LOL

    Happy St. Patrick's Day!

  8. Randy,
    Let us not forget to villify in the press the mis-do's and dont's of the NEW richest man in the world, Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. I am sure, living in one of the poorest companies in the world, he must be doing something immoral. LOL

  9. Many people think giving to others is a "must" rather than a joyful choice. When you give you become a "good person".
    Part of the reason that people feel the need to justify the wealth is because they believe their resources are limited, and then feel they must explain to others why they are the recipients rather than others

  10. Randy:

    I don't a problem when you are defining selfishness as Love, which you define it as the infinite.
    As a historian, we need to put Ann Ryan's work in perspective. The book was written by a Russian living in a totalitarian regimen in the early 20th century not in the most powerful nation of the time England.
    She is trying to break away from communism ideology. The State is God.
    Social Democracies which you love like the Netherlands are not in contradiction with individual responsablility.
    You can not compare terms and ideologies with the new economies from past centuries.

  11. "If you're traveling with a child, place the oxygen mask on yourself first....then assist your child"

    Selfish? Perhaps. But if we use this analogy in every aspect of life we find that it would do us and others good if we were more selfish.

    Try and take good care of kids if you don't take good care of yourself first. Try having a workable marriage if you don't work on yourself first. Try giving to others if you don't give to yourself first.

    In all examples, and more, it is an absolute must to give to ourselves first before giving to anyone else. Otherwise, we crash and burn, and then what good are we in respect to others?

    Rock on,

    Jhanna Dawson

  12. RG!

    Thank you very kindly for the insight! If you don't take care you YOU first, then who in the hell will?

    This ugly programming goes back to parents who have said you must take care of others and then we wonder where do we come in the picture? We were frowned at & crucifyed for taking care of ourselves.

    I believe that people get the terms 'selfish' & 'self centered' confused. Selfish is self care, whereas self centered is thinking the Universe is ABOUT only you neglecting others.

    It took a while to make peace with taking care of me when I wound up losing everything I had sacrificing my needs! I know better!

    Thanks as always! 🙂

  13. I started reading Randy's blog after I came back from a long, 15 hour plane trip.

    I read the oxygen mask instructions a number of times and it started to make me think about Rand and her writings.

    When I got back home I searched out others of similiar mind and found this blog.

    Now the "oxygen mask" is my favourite analogy.

  14. Some thoughts came to my head when I read this. First: Is there a reality behind this? Can it be shown in the spiritual what kind of "reasons" you have when you do things? Or doesn´t it matter?And the "greater good" what is that, where does it come from and why does it appel to so many people? And do you think we are able to feel in our hearts weather something is worthy or not?I guess if you give 10 % to the church, it MAKES a sense if you like it or not. But how many levels are there?If you like it-right,if you don´t-wrong.Or 100 other nuances between?Well who should make a judgement?God?Haha.But really, what is this all about and why is it so important to us?
    I would at least say one thing here: U can be selfish in a self-centrated way which is good because it strengthen you and everybody else, and selfish in a self-less way when the things you do selfish seam to come from some kind of non-decision.A "lack" which create "lack".Which make people around you "out of breath" with a feeling they have nothing to do there.A person who is selfish in the right way, includes others in his selfishness.Not every rich people create worth and prosperity with their actions.My true experience was that the times in my life when I didn´t include others, I starved.And I was selfish.And it wasn´t good.Get it?

  15. She wrote her books in the late 1950's. Most of the massive changes in our economy started with the 1980's with the explosion of the computer and later on with Microsoft and then Google in the 1990's.
    The idea that less goverment leads to more freedom is not reality. In fact, Most of the wealth in the U.S. is been created in the state that have higher taxes like California with the Silicon Valley and New York with Wall Street not in the Deep Southern States like Alabama and Mississippi- the poorest states in the nation.

  16. Great post and I agree with your thoughts on Ayn Rand. The more that I am selfish, the more that I find myself and realize what I am suppose to be doing here. The more that I am selfish, the more people like me because I have found my true self through being selfish. The more that I am selfish, the more that I can help those struggling to see the true way. It took me 44 years to become selfish and I love it!!!!!Everyone should become selfish.

  17. Hey Randy-

    A few years ago one of my dearest friends from London, called me on a Tues and asked if we were free for the weekend. He wanted to know if it would be OK with us, if he flew my husband, my daughter and me to St. Bart for the weekend to be with him and his partner.

    Two days later he flew the three of us there and hosted us in a beautiful place by the ocean. We enjoyed fabulous food, wines like I had never tasted in my life and each other company for four full days.

    When we offered to take them out for a meal or asked for some way to reciprocate the generosity, this was his answer...

    "You willingness to spend the weekend with us on such short notice was the greatest gift I could have received. Your being here brought joy to my vacation. This is my lifestyle and there is no one in the world I would rather share this place with. So, thank you for your willingness to show up and spend the weekend with us."

    I learned a lot about prosperity that weekend and look forward to the days when I can fly my loved ones, from anywhere in the world, to come see me anywhere in the world I just happen to be (and buy wine to share with them that isn't even listed on the wine list!)

    -Jeanne

  18. A great example here is my sister split who up with her husband not even a week ago. She was concerned about how her 1.5 year old would take it. It tuns out that, in my sister's own words, her little kid has been really "happy, talkative and on fire" all week, probably because my sister has been feeling better about her own life. When we take the time to ensure our own happiness, others around us will show us better sides of themselves. In my view, being selfish enough to be happy is the best example that we can set for others.

  19. Bill Gates again? Hmmm. Draw your own conclusions, but at the recent TED conference in California, Bill Gates made this remarkable statement, among others, at around 4:30 into the clip:

    "Population - If we do a really great job on new vaccines, healthcare and reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 10 or 15%, but there we see an increase of about 1.3."

    Bill Gates is a major Illuminati puppet.
    youtube.com/watch?v=JaF-fq2Zn7I

    HUMAN RACE - GET OFF YOUR KNEES
    The Lion Sleeps No More
    davidickebooks.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=246

  20. That might be. But Randy's ideas of less goverment been a libertarian doesn't work in the 21th century.
    In fact the richest person in the world is Carlos Slim in the corrupted,libertarian,Mexico. On the other hand, Sweden has a billionarie and one o highest tax rates in the world.
    That's my point.

  21. "The subliminal message is that their great wealth somehow comes at the expense of the poor. And the danger of exposing yourself to this kind of input is that it creates subliminal programming in your own subconscious mind that to become successful yourself, you will have to take advantage of others."

    I think this could be some of the fear of sharing an opportunity (for example, network marketing) with people you know. That you would be taking advantage of others even though you also believe in the opportunity and think it can help people. It creates a conflict.

    Or another example is that if you take care of yourself, others (such as your family) will suffer. If you take care of yourself, you are not taking care of your family. You are selfish if you take care of yourself, which hurts others because it takes away from care you could be giving to them.

    "The dictionary definition of selfishness is basically concern with one’s own interests, without regard for others. It means, I value myself first, regardless of what anyone else thinks. Notice that there is no good or evil implicit in the definition. That, ‘without regard for others’ does not mean that you are doing harm to others. It simply means that you are well adjusted and sensible enough to meet your own needs first.
    ...That you should sacrifice yourself for the “greater good.”
    This idea is very dangerous to your self-esteem and your life. Relinquishing your happiness for the sake of others, known or unknown, verifies to yourself, and others, that you are small and unworthy of even your own attention."

    I am guilty of not always taking care of myself first. It affected my health & self-esteem. I know others who don't eat right or work out because they are too busy taking care of their family/others and they put themselves last.

    I think it is important to remember to take care of yourself first. Health is part of prosperity. If you have health you can achieve more and you can also give more to others...giving better care to others...and teaching others(for example- children) by your example to take care of themselves first. You will be healthier & they will be healthier.

  22. Rady,

    I have read most of the comments and while some understand the point, a few I believe missed it. Selfishness is doing for yourself first. Being the best you are because you take care of all of your needs. It does not mean you are without love, kindness or thoughtfulness. I live with a man who believes you need to give in order to get back. Giving the 10% to the church blesses God and enables him to bless you more in return. So are you giving out of guilt or for the blessing in return which to say is you give to receive back more. I believe we all are selfish, most however do not want to admit it. They prefer to portray the I am better because I give from the heart and expect nothing in return. Anyone who knows the ways of God knows the more you give the more you will receive in return. Like the saying goes, Try to out give God.
    Bek

  23. selfishness is doing/wanting the best for u from your best efforts. self centered , often confused with above is expecting all others to do for u. Ayn Rand was correct but so is Austrian economics but who studies such esoteric concepts

  24. Responsibility to myself is a reflection of the freedom that I live.

    Sacrificing self for others, I have come to realise, is a fear of personal freedom. If I sacrifice my life, I ditch the burden of having to live it myself and having only myself to blame. It is a fear of freedom or a lack of understanding about how to handle it.

    Freedom comes with responsibility and exercising that freedom can result in people calling you names, like Selfish, Arrogant, and the like.

    There is such a thing as "Escape from Freedom" (title of book by Erich Fromm) which can result in such excesses as one group of people being OK with having another group of people being exterminated. Herd instinct, mob rule, etc.

    kh

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  • 31 comments on “Are You Guilty?”

    1. I agree with you 100%... I put myself in first place before helping others... But that doesn't mean I don't help cause I do... Everytime a friend of mine needs help, I do it right away... Cause I know a lot of people that say they help the humanity but they don't have a real life... That means travel to different places, meet great people, hang out at night with friends and so on... I think of myself first and after I am confortable with it, I help the others... This is the joy of life... Thanks for your posts... I always stay stronger after I read them 😉

    2. Don't you think everyone is selfish, except that 'the herd' does not realize it and most certainly aren't for the right reasons? What I mean is that everyone, if they care to look deep inside themselves, is selfish in that what drives them is the feeling their actions give them.
      Why is someone crazy about their partner?
      Very simply said: Because of the feeling their partner gives them! Why do people do volunteerwork?
      Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives them!
      Why does someone donate a kidney?
      Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives them!

      So 'the herd' is lying when they say they do the things they do out of altruism. And if lying to you or me about it is one thing, they are also lying to themselves which is about the worst you can do in my opinion.

      Why do I write this reaction?
      Very simply said: Because of the feeling it gives me!

    3. Funny I almost find myself at a loss for words in this one. You know, I was raised poor and programmed with this sort of nonsense.Through mentoring from greats like yourself I came into understanding that those beliefs and philosophies were totally ass backwards. And I'm sure you've noticed most of the people who affirm these beliefs are dumb, sick and broke...and totally consumed meeting their own needs.

      You and I into this scenario in our profession often, with people who refuse to approach their warm market because of the incorrect belief that they are 'taking advantage'. I impress upon my team rather that if you are going to win, you should be doing it with the people you love the most, first. And the subconscious programming that to become successful yourself, you will have to take advantage of others is totally unfounded. I believe it is almost impossible to become successful if you simply take advantage of people.

      I realize now as I become more prosperous and successful, I am able to help more people, but only because I am not consumed with meeting my own needs. It's self gratifying to wear Versace AND spare some change.

      I am able to make contributions to people and things that matter to me in ways I never could because my own needs (and desires) are met first. Guilty as charged!

      mad love to you dude. get home safe! -TS

    4. Great post randy! I love it!

      When I think of it now hearing it from your perspective it make's a lot of sense.

      We are all "Selfish" there's nothing wrong with that it's just human nature. We will all put ourselves first (in most cases) because we are us! "we are us" < something like that.

      Also I love how Dov Baron Distinguishes "Self worth and Self esteem"

      I think that by not being selfish you can hurt your self worth and self esteem both which decreases your income and confidence.

      There is so much value in understanding this information and that there is nothing "wrong" with being selfish.

      The funny thing is that if some people learned how to be more selfish they would be better givers and better at being "unselfish" as people would say.

      You can't give away something you don't have so it's important to take care of yourself and increase your self-esteem and self worth so that you can give more value back to the world.

      Great post once again randy!

      Very insightful! I think of selfishness differently now!

      Keep it up!

      David King

    5. Guilty.

      My friend, you have one of the soundest minds around, and I am constantly nodding my head when I read your stuff. I've been a fan of yours since my network marketing days. I left MLM a few years ago, but have followed you because you're a smart guy. A good guy.

      I don't agree with everything you say (I'm an atheist, like Ayn was), but I respect everyone because, for all I know, they could be right, and I, wrong. And I'm a firm believer that society would function a lot better if people were simply left alone to believe what they want to believe: i.e. treated with respect.

      I think this is best summed-up in the following line I quote from your article: "anything harmful to the individual is actually detrimental to society as a whole." And I'm convinced that humans are wired to do the right thing by themselves, with the incentive being a longer, more happier, free life.

      So I really think that no human actually wants to become a drug addict, beat people up, molest kids, gorge themselves on burgers, and set fire to churches. For whatever reason, some folks just get on the wrong track. It's up to the rest of us to help people back, and we do it because we innately know that it's the right thing to do; it feels good, and thus makes us happy - it's selfish.

      The problem is when we're forced to live in a socialist/welfare state (I'm currently ruled by Gordon Brown, apparently) where our decisions are made for us. Their manifesto is a complete perversion of our own in-built moral code, and along with the pop culture driven by the media, it can completely distort our distinction between right and wrong. And for those in our society lacking in a huge intellect, they come to rely on their government for their moral code.

      This has been the recipe for centuries, and it makes for a weak, base, brain-dumb society, overall. And it ain't gettin' any better. The thing is, any sort of large scale activism against this trend would likely meet opposition from the get-go. As you said, Randy: "But don’t think the herd is smart enough to figure that out. They’re not. They will maintain that the needs of the individual be relinquished to the needs of the masses. They tell you that it is your responsibility to take care of the less fortunate."

      The masses don't believe that humans are born good, generally. They are taught that we are all born bad, and we need government or religion to rein us in, lest we rip each other to pieces, keep all our money to ourselves, eating ourselves to death. It's going to be some task to override THAT programming. But never say never...

      Basically, what I'm saying, is Randy, you're great; good article; selfishness rules; and anarchy is the way forward.

      Amen,

      Scotty

      P.S. What a journey, eh?

    6. Dear Randy,

      >>>I received a scathing message from a lady who questioned whether I share my wealth with those who are poor and only live a short drive my “lavish lifestyle. “<<<

      Ignore these kind of people, Randy. You didn't steal someone else' wealth to come to where you're today. You worked your way up with your best efforts as well as your natural God given super ... I mean, really, super intelligence far beyond those PhD guys, or doctors. I'm very proud of you, as many are. And you have a good heart. You're down-to-earth, both funny and serious 😉 and thank you for being 'you.' There are always people out there who do nothing but digging into someone else business to come up with something to make them feel better, or get jealous of another who is doing better. It's none of their business, really.

      One more thing. I'm sure many would agree... Randy, you're absolutely great! Another great post that I enjoyed reading!! I like the way your write. -saachi

    7. I have to say that I was raised in an environment where being selfish is bad and you should always help others who have less. Basically to feel good you have to always help others and then good will come your way.

      I have been reading your writing Randy for a few years now and have come to see this world in a whole new way - one that I do think is more inline with how God wants us to live.

      So as hard as it is for me to say - "I'm guilty as charged" - or at least I am working on being guilty!! LOL

      Happy St. Patrick's Day!

    8. Randy,
      Let us not forget to villify in the press the mis-do's and dont's of the NEW richest man in the world, Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. I am sure, living in one of the poorest companies in the world, he must be doing something immoral. LOL

    9. Many people think giving to others is a "must" rather than a joyful choice. When you give you become a "good person".
      Part of the reason that people feel the need to justify the wealth is because they believe their resources are limited, and then feel they must explain to others why they are the recipients rather than others

    10. Randy:

      I don't a problem when you are defining selfishness as Love, which you define it as the infinite.
      As a historian, we need to put Ann Ryan's work in perspective. The book was written by a Russian living in a totalitarian regimen in the early 20th century not in the most powerful nation of the time England.
      She is trying to break away from communism ideology. The State is God.
      Social Democracies which you love like the Netherlands are not in contradiction with individual responsablility.
      You can not compare terms and ideologies with the new economies from past centuries.

    11. "If you're traveling with a child, place the oxygen mask on yourself first....then assist your child"

      Selfish? Perhaps. But if we use this analogy in every aspect of life we find that it would do us and others good if we were more selfish.

      Try and take good care of kids if you don't take good care of yourself first. Try having a workable marriage if you don't work on yourself first. Try giving to others if you don't give to yourself first.

      In all examples, and more, it is an absolute must to give to ourselves first before giving to anyone else. Otherwise, we crash and burn, and then what good are we in respect to others?

      Rock on,

      Jhanna Dawson

    12. RG!

      Thank you very kindly for the insight! If you don't take care you YOU first, then who in the hell will?

      This ugly programming goes back to parents who have said you must take care of others and then we wonder where do we come in the picture? We were frowned at & crucifyed for taking care of ourselves.

      I believe that people get the terms 'selfish' & 'self centered' confused. Selfish is self care, whereas self centered is thinking the Universe is ABOUT only you neglecting others.

      It took a while to make peace with taking care of me when I wound up losing everything I had sacrificing my needs! I know better!

      Thanks as always! 🙂

    13. I started reading Randy's blog after I came back from a long, 15 hour plane trip.

      I read the oxygen mask instructions a number of times and it started to make me think about Rand and her writings.

      When I got back home I searched out others of similiar mind and found this blog.

      Now the "oxygen mask" is my favourite analogy.

    14. Some thoughts came to my head when I read this. First: Is there a reality behind this? Can it be shown in the spiritual what kind of "reasons" you have when you do things? Or doesn´t it matter?And the "greater good" what is that, where does it come from and why does it appel to so many people? And do you think we are able to feel in our hearts weather something is worthy or not?I guess if you give 10 % to the church, it MAKES a sense if you like it or not. But how many levels are there?If you like it-right,if you don´t-wrong.Or 100 other nuances between?Well who should make a judgement?God?Haha.But really, what is this all about and why is it so important to us?
      I would at least say one thing here: U can be selfish in a self-centrated way which is good because it strengthen you and everybody else, and selfish in a self-less way when the things you do selfish seam to come from some kind of non-decision.A "lack" which create "lack".Which make people around you "out of breath" with a feeling they have nothing to do there.A person who is selfish in the right way, includes others in his selfishness.Not every rich people create worth and prosperity with their actions.My true experience was that the times in my life when I didn´t include others, I starved.And I was selfish.And it wasn´t good.Get it?

    15. She wrote her books in the late 1950's. Most of the massive changes in our economy started with the 1980's with the explosion of the computer and later on with Microsoft and then Google in the 1990's.
      The idea that less goverment leads to more freedom is not reality. In fact, Most of the wealth in the U.S. is been created in the state that have higher taxes like California with the Silicon Valley and New York with Wall Street not in the Deep Southern States like Alabama and Mississippi- the poorest states in the nation.

    16. Great post and I agree with your thoughts on Ayn Rand. The more that I am selfish, the more that I find myself and realize what I am suppose to be doing here. The more that I am selfish, the more people like me because I have found my true self through being selfish. The more that I am selfish, the more that I can help those struggling to see the true way. It took me 44 years to become selfish and I love it!!!!!Everyone should become selfish.

    17. Hey Randy-

      A few years ago one of my dearest friends from London, called me on a Tues and asked if we were free for the weekend. He wanted to know if it would be OK with us, if he flew my husband, my daughter and me to St. Bart for the weekend to be with him and his partner.

      Two days later he flew the three of us there and hosted us in a beautiful place by the ocean. We enjoyed fabulous food, wines like I had never tasted in my life and each other company for four full days.

      When we offered to take them out for a meal or asked for some way to reciprocate the generosity, this was his answer...

      "You willingness to spend the weekend with us on such short notice was the greatest gift I could have received. Your being here brought joy to my vacation. This is my lifestyle and there is no one in the world I would rather share this place with. So, thank you for your willingness to show up and spend the weekend with us."

      I learned a lot about prosperity that weekend and look forward to the days when I can fly my loved ones, from anywhere in the world, to come see me anywhere in the world I just happen to be (and buy wine to share with them that isn't even listed on the wine list!)

      -Jeanne

    18. A great example here is my sister split who up with her husband not even a week ago. She was concerned about how her 1.5 year old would take it. It tuns out that, in my sister's own words, her little kid has been really "happy, talkative and on fire" all week, probably because my sister has been feeling better about her own life. When we take the time to ensure our own happiness, others around us will show us better sides of themselves. In my view, being selfish enough to be happy is the best example that we can set for others.

    19. Bill Gates again? Hmmm. Draw your own conclusions, but at the recent TED conference in California, Bill Gates made this remarkable statement, among others, at around 4:30 into the clip:

      "Population - If we do a really great job on new vaccines, healthcare and reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 10 or 15%, but there we see an increase of about 1.3."

      Bill Gates is a major Illuminati puppet.
      youtube.com/watch?v=JaF-fq2Zn7I

      HUMAN RACE - GET OFF YOUR KNEES
      The Lion Sleeps No More
      davidickebooks.co.uk/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=246

    20. That might be. But Randy's ideas of less goverment been a libertarian doesn't work in the 21th century.
      In fact the richest person in the world is Carlos Slim in the corrupted,libertarian,Mexico. On the other hand, Sweden has a billionarie and one o highest tax rates in the world.
      That's my point.

    21. "The subliminal message is that their great wealth somehow comes at the expense of the poor. And the danger of exposing yourself to this kind of input is that it creates subliminal programming in your own subconscious mind that to become successful yourself, you will have to take advantage of others."

      I think this could be some of the fear of sharing an opportunity (for example, network marketing) with people you know. That you would be taking advantage of others even though you also believe in the opportunity and think it can help people. It creates a conflict.

      Or another example is that if you take care of yourself, others (such as your family) will suffer. If you take care of yourself, you are not taking care of your family. You are selfish if you take care of yourself, which hurts others because it takes away from care you could be giving to them.

      "The dictionary definition of selfishness is basically concern with one’s own interests, without regard for others. It means, I value myself first, regardless of what anyone else thinks. Notice that there is no good or evil implicit in the definition. That, ‘without regard for others’ does not mean that you are doing harm to others. It simply means that you are well adjusted and sensible enough to meet your own needs first.
      ...That you should sacrifice yourself for the “greater good.”
      This idea is very dangerous to your self-esteem and your life. Relinquishing your happiness for the sake of others, known or unknown, verifies to yourself, and others, that you are small and unworthy of even your own attention."

      I am guilty of not always taking care of myself first. It affected my health & self-esteem. I know others who don't eat right or work out because they are too busy taking care of their family/others and they put themselves last.

      I think it is important to remember to take care of yourself first. Health is part of prosperity. If you have health you can achieve more and you can also give more to others...giving better care to others...and teaching others(for example- children) by your example to take care of themselves first. You will be healthier & they will be healthier.

    22. Rady,

      I have read most of the comments and while some understand the point, a few I believe missed it. Selfishness is doing for yourself first. Being the best you are because you take care of all of your needs. It does not mean you are without love, kindness or thoughtfulness. I live with a man who believes you need to give in order to get back. Giving the 10% to the church blesses God and enables him to bless you more in return. So are you giving out of guilt or for the blessing in return which to say is you give to receive back more. I believe we all are selfish, most however do not want to admit it. They prefer to portray the I am better because I give from the heart and expect nothing in return. Anyone who knows the ways of God knows the more you give the more you will receive in return. Like the saying goes, Try to out give God.
      Bek

    23. selfishness is doing/wanting the best for u from your best efforts. self centered , often confused with above is expecting all others to do for u. Ayn Rand was correct but so is Austrian economics but who studies such esoteric concepts

    24. Responsibility to myself is a reflection of the freedom that I live.

      Sacrificing self for others, I have come to realise, is a fear of personal freedom. If I sacrifice my life, I ditch the burden of having to live it myself and having only myself to blame. It is a fear of freedom or a lack of understanding about how to handle it.

      Freedom comes with responsibility and exercising that freedom can result in people calling you names, like Selfish, Arrogant, and the like.

      There is such a thing as "Escape from Freedom" (title of book by Erich Fromm) which can result in such excesses as one group of people being OK with having another group of people being exterminated. Herd instinct, mob rule, etc.

      kh

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