What We Owe to Each Other

Late in the evening, there are several things that periodically crept to my mind. And this particular thing, actually affects how I see the world, that leads to affecting how should I live my life. Sounds corny right, but this happens to me for quite some time.

I think that there’s a paradox, or call it as I will, a battle in everybody’s mind, on how selfish they must be. I personally believe, most people are selfish. That’s human nature right. Of course ancient history always say that human beings progressed this far is due to our collective efforts in grouping into tribes and staying together. Back then we needed to work together and helped each other in a geographically bounded communities. Now, we coordinate our efforts through families and corporations. But if we look at the individuals, we see that people work together knowing that it benefits their individual selves. It provides reassurance and protection, that the individual’s own survival, depends on the group’s survival.

When I look in our modern world. I observe that people are still selfish (or getting more selfish) whether we noticed it or not. I see that many people have big homes, but more people around them live in slums and constantly thinking on whether they are able to put stuffs on their dinner plate every night. It is people’s individual right to own properties and accrue wealth, but I see no way how this benefits the society; in which they, the individuals, actually live in.

I see, so many times, a grandma is waiting for a bus (an outdated and now rarely to be seen mode of transport) to arrive and carry her home. She is old and just finished her day of being a merchant at the nearby traditional market. I don’t know why. From hundreds of individuals passing her by in their cars and motorcycles, nobody offered her a ride. They barely noticed. Of course. Why bother.

Sometimes it sickens me, but being the person I am right now, I regret saying that I am actually among those individuals. Sigh. Do we actually owe each other?