altriusm, a "nice" way to express your selfishness? Is altruism a benign form of selfishness and is it itself a subconscious act of selfish ness? If selfishness is suppose to be defined as an act where you act in your own self-interests, and if the principles of ethics that you defined for yourself or that you adhere to is based on helping those around you, wouldn't practicing those set of principles be promoting your self interests , and therefore, your "altriusm" would be just another expression of selfishness? And even when humans carry out an act of altriusm as a group , such as when the a group of pop artists congregate together to do a horrible rendition of a somewhat mediocre song that was also created for the purpose of raising money to assist poor people in africa; You could argue that the musical artists were doing the charitable acts because they would look more favorable to their fanbase and they would garner new fans who approve of their behavior and consequently, the sales of their records would go up and therefore, their motivation for carrying out the charitable act would be selfishness. Ultimately I think tThere is no escaping selfishness even when people make a conscious effort to do so .Though I probably should , I don't have to read Richard Dawkin's book the selfish gene to see the evolutionary reasons for altruism ; I suspect that when our social societies resemble the social societies that were formed by chimpanzees , we helped a member of out tribe because it was beneficial to have that member of the group alive because it was essential to the groups survival, not because of a random act of kindness.but it would increase the groups chances of survival if their were many members in the tribe as possible. What do you guys think? You think that not acting selfish is an impossible act?