HOME   People do good because they are human, not because they are religious! 

Do not give God any credit for the good they do, they did it!

 

GOD VERSUS ALTRUISM
 
What is altruism?
Doing good for another without any thought about what is in it for you. You deliberately exclude any thought for yourself if you find you are expecting to gain from it. Altruism means that if you do the good deed and it will cost you your life you will still do it. Though you don't get this dramatic choice much in your life you are meant to have this disposition.
 
But you are only asked to die if you have to try to save the lives of others!
What if we lived in a world where there was no way to be altruistic but by dying? Say you had to save a stranger from dying by the plague by taking the plague from him unto yourself? Altruism says we must die for we are here to love others.
 
What is egoism?
Doing good for others to fulfil yourself. For example, giving away your last apple to fulfil the feeling of friendship for another is egoism. It does not look for anything back other than this fulfilment.

Do you have a choice between altruism and egoism?
No. Egoism is the sane and correct philosophy. The condemnations issued at the egoist ignore the fact that a person should not be condemned for doing what they have to do, when there is no choice. Egoists are bullied by the preachers of altruism.
 
Can egoism be reconciled with religion?
No for egoism says we need only do good to fulfil ourselves and we should enjoy working for others instead of studying theology, praying, looking for miracles and trying to believe in God. Egoism says I must put myself first in a way that will automatically benefit all those around me. Religion says that doing good for others is not enough - you need religion too. This is so silly for even most religionists do good without even thinking of their faith, nearly all the time. Miracles such as the resurrection of Jesus from the dead do nothing to encourage being a better egoist and so must be dismissed as evil myths.
 
What is religious altruism?
The religious Altruist does everything for the sake of God. It is not for his or her own sake. It is not even for other people and when he or she speaks of our duty to love one another he or she means love for the sake of God. This love is really just loving God alone and acting as if you love others. Some religious Altruists do love for God firstly and people secondly. But that would be a sin for God alone matters for nothing exists without him inclduing the people you love. The first brand of religious altruism was endorsed by Jesus Christ. Both he and Moses said that God must be loved with all our powers or to the full. 
 
Did philosophers teach altruism that was not necessarily religious?
Yes! Altruism is the bedrock of Kant’s moral philosophy.

Why is religious altruism worse than altruism?
Because you are more sure that people exist than that God does and it demands that he be put first and yourself and others second or him first and yourself and others be served only for his sake and for this and other reasons which we will see later it is crueller. At least altruism on its own tries to put people you can see and touch first, people whose existence you are more confident of.
 
What else is better about humanistic altruism?
It is that it helps a being who cries and suffers and dies while nothing can harm God.
 
Does belief in God give an extra endorsement of altruism?
Yes - altruism is evil and there is enough to endorse it without God and religion making it holy and trying to make out it is what life is all about.

Why does belief in a loving God imply that altruism is true?
Because the alternative is to believe that we always please ourselves and if we can only do that then suffering is no use but it must have some use if there is a God. Suffering implies that we are here to be trained and to sacrifice ourselves in love if there is a God. If God made us, then Altruism is his law for he would not have made free beings that should be selfish in at least a healthy way. He should not bother causing them to suffer for they can’t sacrifice anyway.
 
What is "back door" altruism?
Some religions condemn altruism and go for backdoor altruism. They rebrand it after banning it and then sneak it back in. But if they are honest they are out and out altruists in relation to God when they say he comes first or alone matters. In practice, this is the same as being altruists with regard to people. You exercise the disposition of altruism the same as for man as for God. The only difference is that total altruism is due to God for he supposedly deserves all our love.

Is it true that without God that altruism becomes an arbitrary thing with nobody able to prove that there is an obligation to do this or that?
This idea which appears in the Catholic Encyclopaedia discussion of altruism is false. It presupposes that the altruist can only say that somebody was wrong to rape her or him or whatever if God says so for when self-sacrifice is the law a person could have a duty to be willing, though not necessarily desiring, to be raped. The Church wants to believe that God commands us to seek our own welfare and happiness instead of having no concern for our own rights and dignity even to please him. This would forbid the altruistic habit of not caring about yourself for others. But in fact the Church advocates altruism towards God for you are to work for yourself and others for his sake and not for anything else. The reasoning of the Church is that God wants self-sacrifice or altruism but he directs how it is to be done for he knows best. He sees that the system he gives will result in the most virtue and moral good. But this cannot work.

 

First of all how can we put a God whose existence we can’t be sure of first? If we can manage this then the problem of how we can be sure of his revelation arises for if he makes morality we will never know if he is right or if what we are being told by him is true.

 

Secondly, altruism seeks the moral good of others though this good is far from pleasant but to love God and love others for his sake is not just to care for their moral good at all but just to care for God. It is worse than any non-religious altruism.

 

The next problem is that Jesus did tell us to let others steal from us and abuse us and do nothing about it.

 

The next problem is that there is little agreement on morality in the Churches.

Does altruism imply that God exists?
Altruism cannot make sense apart from a God of love for it does us no good and consequently it denies that God really cares about us too. It can only be right if God deserves altruistic love. But even if God exists there are still problems for the credibility of altruism. Altruism is not love in a real but superficial sense.

Can’t you see you are wrong for animals exist and have no ability to be altruistic and we do not think this disproves God?
But if God exists and is good animals cannot suffer. They only appear to. Their suffering would have no value or worth so God would be malicious if he allowed it to happen. It would be the same with us. And especially us for we know we are conscious beings so if we cannot be altruistic we cannot be the creations of a good God.

Does the doctrine of God imply extreme sacrifice is a duty?
Yes. Altruism does that too even without him but if God exists he is more important than men and women and so deserves greater sacrifice. To put it another way, if to us altruism requires extreme torment, God requires worse. If God deserves infinite love then the more we suffer to do good the better and the more we hate it the better for love is sacrifice.


You know that some religion lies that God does not want us to suffer and when we have to suffer he has to let it happen to us and ask us to bear it with patience. It is a necessary evil. But it is only a necessary evil if God had to make us which religion denies. Belief in God is dangerous as you can see from the fact that nobody should try for a baby when that baby will inherit a dreadful disability from her on the basis that it will love and she will love it and suffering will deepen that love. Belief in God logically commands cruelty.

 

If altruism alone is cruel it has to be crueller if there is a God and has all the more reason to be cruel then.

Don’t you think that when God enables us to be happy and is happy himself and became man and enjoyed himself that he would not want us to torment ourselves?
God could give us pleasure for us to renounce it. God cannot change so he cannot help the happiness he has so it is no argument for happiness being lawful. If he became man and enjoyed himself it was a necessary evil to attract followers.

How does God letting a man be stranded on a desert island for life prove that altruism is cruel?
The man has nobody to be altruistic with so he must do severe penance even if it is not needed just for the sake of pleasing God through altruism.

What does altruism and God say about meddling in the lives of others for their good?
God meddles all the time and tells us what to think. Meddling is a duty if altruism is true but if God is believed in then it is even more obligatory for God commands it and wants us to offer him our good deeds. Also, since everything is God’s business for God made us and gives us all we have and God does not speak to people, we have to do all the work for him and be God to them. We cannot do proper good for others without making sure we know what we are doing and that it is good first. This forces altruists to meddle because others will disagree with them or at least not be sure. They will say that helping others who don’t want it is helping them even if they can’t see it and altruism commands that the best as it sees it be done. It is said that helping them is more important than respecting what they believe and refusing to help them because of their belief for that would be at the expense of disrespecting the help they need. It would be wrong to put their belief before their need for need is more important. It is said that this is not scary because the altruist can reject his or her own feelings and desires and look at the problem objectively and come up with the right and successful solution without the interference of these feelings and desires. Sometimes it will be best to do nothing. But that presupposes that altruism makes sense and it does not. From start to finish it is error and guesswork. Altruists could not possibly be able to agree on what is best unless they misunderstand their altruism. And especially when making others altruistic is the main goal for it is hard to tell how this or that will affect a person’s relation to altruism.

What is the relationship between altruism and free will?
Religion says God gave us free will to choose between ourselves and him or selfishness or selflessness towards him. If altruism is not possible then free will cannot be for this reason. It either is freely choosing between different forms of selfishness or it does not exist. The two, altruism and free will, are inseparable if there is a God. For the anti-altruist atheist, free will would be a choice between of one of several egoist options.

Was Jesus an altruist?
Jesus advocated altruism all during his ministry (Luke 6:32-35;14:12-14). He preached it in the Sermon on the Mount, which the Christian world prefers to forget for it practices nothing like it. He was alleged to have died for the spiritual good of others and lived like a beggar. Jesus said nobody can be perfect as God but he commanded us to try to be as perfect as God - he meant we must never be happy with how good we are.
 
Does the Bible advocate altruism and self-sacrifice and frown on pleasure?
The apostle Paul authorised to deliver Jesus' teaching declared that no matter what you have its useless when one has Christ (Philippians 3:8). Paul talks of wanting to punish his body to make it his slave (1 Corinthians 9:27). 1 Maccabees 2:62 speaks of the glory of sinners as dung. The fact that the Bible declares that love isn't enough and we must believe its doctrines that are superfluous to love and believe some doctrines that are disturbing shows that it is a nasty scripture. There would be a very different Bible if Spinoza's declaration that we are obligated only to believe in what assists us best in loving our neighbour were accepted.

Does God imply that the doctrine of supererogation (good deeds you have no duty to do) is right?
Yes. He did not need to make us if he is supreme being. Christianity says he is three persons in one being so he is self-sufficient. Still he made us. One has no duty to create beings so if God made us it was an act over and above the call of duty. It was generosity and not a duty. But duty is still what is best. If it is best for us to exist then God did wrong if he had no duty to make us. But if he had a duty to make us it implies he is not self-sufficient and therefore not a real God. This is another way the fact that existence tells against the existence of God rather than for it.
 
Does the lie that all believers in God tell that you must love the sinner and not love the sin prove that altruism is bad?
Yes.Believers in God say we must love the sinner and hate the sin for we are all sinners. This is dishonest because if you say John’s essay is stupid that is the same as calling John stupid and administering bad consequences to him though many pretend it is not. Religion does this which shows it is wilful dishonesty and false charm. This makes altruism impossible for it is meant to be free from lies but this bases it on lies. So egoism is the only option. It is bad enough to be an unbeliever and promote the lie of loving wrongdoers and hating wrong but it is worse to say that God does the same, to blacken the being you say is all good. Despite all its “love” for God, God-religion is intrinsically blasphemous and deepens vice.
 
How is the sinner the sin?
If we are to love the sinner that means we are to love the sin for it is not the bad act we hate but what the person has become in doing the act. To acknowledge that sin reveals the sinner or the kind of person the doer of the sin is is to say that sin and sinner are one and the same. Sin describes not a thing but what a person does or what a person is like. The sin becomes the person as it were. Loving the sinner will come before hating the sin and is more important so the sin will be treated as unimportant or even nice. For these two reasons the sin is loved. Altruism cannot condone this so altruism has to be rejected.
 
And where is God when you love sinners and hate sins or try to?
If God should be loved first of all that follows that hating the sin is more important than loving the sinner for he hates sin infinitely and not to hate what he hates would not be putting him first. If you hate the sin more than you love the person then you might as well hate the person too for your attitude will be hurtful to him and will lead to you losing sight of him being a person. But you might reply that God loves the sinner infinitely and it is only because he loves the sinner that he hates the sin. But when he hates the sin which is very strong it is clear that he hates the person. There is no need for us to hate and disapprove of sin that much but since God wants us to be like him that is what he wants us to do. If you say you love Mary and you say you hate her biting her nails does your claim to love her ring true if you really feel that strongly about it? Of course not. If you really love the person and the sin deserves to be hated you cannot abhor the sin. You have to forget about what is deserved to keep loving the person.
 
How will altruism affect your peace of mind?
If a stranger insults you, nobody can tell you not to take it to heart if altruism is true. You would have to be upset that the person had such a bad character. Altruism is very harmful.
 
Does God reward if altruism is right?
Critics of altruism hold that altruistic people are just do-gooders who pretend their good is all about others while they have selfish motives. They may just do good because they feel like it and enjoy it or expect or like the reward. Psychologists admit that the most altruistic of actions could have hidden selfish motives that even the doer cannot perceive or will not perceive. The Bible says the heart is the worst deceiver of all. God could not give us rewards if he wants us to be altruistic. Then he is giving us extra reason for our motives to deceive us. We could be after the reward more than we think. He is encouraging us to lose or weaken our altruism if he offers rewards. Assuming altruism is possible, atheism has more altruistic potential than belief in God.
 
What does God imply about love?
We want people to find us lovable. If we think we are causing people to love us say by magic that love will not satisfy us. It is manipulation that is causing the love. The love isn't real for it is not us that is found lovable but magic making people think we are lovable. It is about the magic and not us. Christianity teaches that God enables his true followers to love one another and that this love is not natural but a supernatural gift of God called grace. It is another way of saying that real love is magic. The Church says love needs to be a gift from God and not our creation for we are so bad and stupid and imperfect. This wouldn't be love. God and love are irreconcilable. Prayer is basically asking God to help us love him and others far more or to start loving others as God wants. Prayer is evil. To derive satisfaction from it is delusional.
 
What does motherhood say about altruism?
That you can be moral and not be altruistic for you can be altruistic without being moral. Nobody thinks a mother caring for her new baby is doing it for moral reasons. She does it naturally - her altruism is driven by nature not morality. The disappearance of such so-called altruism would be worse than the disappearance of altruism or morality. Real altruism or morality is not everything and its selfish to put it first! Paradoxically!
 
Conclusion
Altruism is a bad belief. Belief in God only makes it worse and even more hypocritical than it is.