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The Greater Good


Darklady
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Does the greater good outweigh individual good? When I was a xian the greater good, in this case the greater good I am talking about staying in a marriage for the sake of the children, because it would reflect badly on the church and that if we all did what we wanted to society would ‘fall apart’.

 

Xains are taught (or at least I was) to put others needs above their own. Women especially are told that the family comes first, then the husband, then the children, but womens needs were subjected to the greater good of the family.

 

So I am wondering, what do people here think, when does one’s own need outweigh the need of others? Should we try to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people and in doing so live in misery, or does our own personal happiness (or good) come first?

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Situational I suppose. Do the people in question mean enough to you? Will they pick up on your misery and make them feel guilty about your sacrifice? Would you and them be better served if you are happy instead of doing a "greater good"?

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greater good exists not only in a christian society,,,,,,,,,

 

the chinese/malays believe in it,,,,,

 

i think most cultures will ascribe to it, individuals? maybe, maybe not,,,,,,,,,,,,,

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Actually, it is God first, then the husband, then the children/family, and they come last, being submissive to God and their husband, at least that was what I was taught. Now, I try to put myself first so that I can help others, but sometimes I still fall into the trap of putting other people's needs before mine still and that never works. When I do that, I find myself moody, arguing with others, and it's all a complete failure.

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So I am wondering, what do people here think, when does one’s own need outweigh the need of others? Should we try to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people and in doing so live in misery, or does our own personal happiness (or good) come first?

 

It's sometimes hard to find a balance, I'm sure. If someone doesn't have personal happiness, how can they deal with life properly and those that they love?

 

I don't think it's selfish to want personal happiness, far from it, a person can't function properly without it.

 

My mother sacrificed her own happiness for that of her kids and husband and she ended up very unhappy, twisted and bitter. I think all 6 of us kids suffered in many ways because mother stayed in a ratshit relationship. We all ended up with some sort of emotional shortcoming/s in one way or another.

 

The trick is to find a balance, but to sacrifice your own happiness for others is, I feel, dangerous for your own self-esteem and development.

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Define the greater good. For example, I would not give my life to save a complete stranger although I would give my life to save my child or my wife. I may even give my life to save a child I do not know but all of these are based on avoiding guilt or sadness rather than altruism. In the case you mentioned the greater good could be better defined as keeping social standing among a peer group and/or avoiding the pain that inevitably comes with a divorce.

 

As far as other sacrifices (such as time, money, etc.) for a non-personal cause (aids relief in Africa, donating money to a homeless shelter, etc.) that benefits others that we have never met we gain a sense of accomplishment or joy from the idea that we are helping those less fortunate. Again, this is an experience that rewards us for just a little effort.

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Does the greater good outweigh individual good? When I was a xian the greater good, in this case the greater good I am talking about staying in a marriage for the sake of the children, because it would reflect badly on the church and that if we all did what we wanted to society would ‘fall apart’.

I think the church, as described here, had a poor grasp of what the greater good is in this case. The "greater good" of staying in a marriage of the sake of the children really has nothing to do with the church or with society falling apart. The greater good is the welfare of the children. Even though it represents a sacrifice and a suspension of the experience of personal happiness, would staying in a bad marriage so that the children are not emotionally harmed or set back be the best thing to do? It depends on the children. It could also be that getting out of a bad marriage and seeing mommy happy would be, in the long run, the most healthy thing for the kids. It's a judgment call, taking into account economic, social and career factors as well.

 

The church obsessing on it's image is a sick, twisted, toxic, anti-humanistic point of view. Too bad more folks don't realize this and spot the manipulation ten miles off with their eyes closed.

 

Xains are taught (or at least I was) to put others needs above their own. Women especially are told that the family comes first, then the husband, then the children, but womens needs were subjected to the greater good of the family.

 

So I am wondering, what do people here think, when does one’s own need outweigh the need of others? Should we try to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people and in doing so live in misery, or does our own personal happiness (or good) come first?

 

I really wonder if it ever really comes down to 1) The greatest good for the greatest number of people and me living in misery or 2) Society falls apart and I am happy.

 

It seems that the two go hand in hand. Certainly, there is a juvenile, narcissistic point of view where a very small percentage of people are only after their own satisfaction. Perhaps there are a small number of people who are so focused on the short term that they cannot find happiness in thinking of the long term.

 

But I really think that , unless an organization interjects a sick, twisted meme like "the church needs to maintain a good witness to the exclusion of personal happiness in this world," people will actually find happiness in putting off short term desire fulfillment in order to consider the good of the community. In other words, considering the greater good of a community of humans is a potential path to personal happiness.

 

There are times when, as a personal judgment call, one feels they must put off personal satisfaction in some areas. But it is never wrong to seek personal happiness. And misery as the lifestyle of choice is just sick. I personally think that people of good conscience cannot be happy if they know their choices are truly harming others. But I think when considering personal happiness and the consequences of choices we must make, most people are competent and will do the right thing by the people around them.

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when does one’s own need outweigh the need of others? Should we try to produce the greatest good for the greatest number of people and in doing so live in misery, or does our own personal happiness (or good) come first?

All forms of love and acts done for the greater good, may appear to be selfless but are, in fact, all selfishly motivated. There is simply no way around it.

 

Two Primes:

  • Love for Our Children - The key word is "our". We do not love them the way we do, because they are the children of a stranger living in Iowa somewhere. They make us feel good. They satisfy something within us, thus we love them.

  • Acts for the Greater Good - One may expect to witness an act done for the greater good only if the actor is convince that it is for "good". The act of acting for the purpose of good makes the actor feel good about themselves, thus they act.

I believe the answer to the question - a very good question - is that we all WILL do what is in our best interest (survival instinct) regardless of how much thought we put into it. Whatever we do is ultimately going to be motivated by what we desire the most. Often, the feeling of having served mankind or our family is more satisfying than serving ourselves. In these cases, serving others is what we will do.

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What xtians really mean about society falling apart is that they will lose control over everyone's behavior. They scream anarchy every time someone has an individual thought.

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