Omaha (omahas) wrote,

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Treatise on Love: Selflessness

I'm going to be writing several different posts on love: what it is, how to express it, how to accept it, etc. I figure I'm old enough I can do that now ;) So, here is the first one, on Selflessness.

The act of loving someone requires the ability to express several different things. One of those very important expressions is Selflessness.

Selflessness is the quality of unselfish concern for the welfare of another, motivated by no concern for yourself. A selfless act involves you deciding that the action you are performing, the statement you are making, whatever you are doing for another person is because you believe that it is in the other person's best interest and not your own.

Committing a selfless act doesn't mean that you blindly make up whatever you think might be in the best interest of the person, either. Just doing what YOU THINK is nice for another isn't very selfless…you've forgotten to include what THEY THINK in the process.

This, of course, means that they have to provide you with some kind of feedback. How do you know whether what you are doing is in their best interest if they never provide you any feedback to let you know that it is, or tell you that it is to begin with? You are acting blindly, and the result is you are acting in what you HOPE is their best interest. In which case they could end up feeling annoyed or even angry, rather than gratified that you were considering their welfare.

Acting with selfless intent towards someone you love is not as easy as it might seem. We tend to review everything in terms of what is in our best interest. But it becomes easier, once we start feeling love towards another, to want to do something for them. That feeling of happiness when we see their response to something we've done for them is, in a way,
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