February 13th, 2012 by Digestive Detective
You cannot help anybody in a significant and sustainable manner if you don't make yourself strong first. Is useless to others who is useless to oneself. One needs to learn and grow in order to share anything significant with others (except maybe for young kids who often know better than we do despite their small size and short experience of life). Last but not least, one needs to love oneself to be able to love others. If you're going to help others just because you dislike or don't value yourself and hope to find a relief in placing others first so that you can forget about yourself and how miserable you think you are, this is a disservice to everyone, but to yourself first. Where is the beauty of striving to help others if you are miserable yourself? Therefore focusing on oneself first is paramount.
The human world needs people who have grown up and never cease growing up, who have become stronger but never cease getting stronger (in many ways, not just physically), who have become enlightened but never cease spreading more light, who are useful to themselves before they are helping others, who love themselves as much as they love others. Yes I am wary of the concept of "selflessness". I am aware this may provoke your beautiful, so politically correct altruistic and self-righteous ideal views of what is the most noble behavior in life and that imply that others should always come first. But the truth is you cannot learn and grow if you are not selfish. The most enlightened people, they had to be selfish and fully focus on their spiritual achievement before they ever shared their insights with others. Paradoxically, even when it had to be through hardship, the most altruistic people sacrificed themselves for values that made them feel good.
Love starts with yourself. The first step is in finding ways of serving yourself while trying to never be detrimental to other people (some people extend this to all other living beings). Ultimately, the most beautiful way to be selfish lies in finding ways and actions that help and do good to others while making you happy and satisfied too. Be strong to be helpful? Absolutely! But be strong first, and be strong for yourself first. And self-knowledge is where it all starts, because knowledge plus action equals power. If you want to have any meaningful and impactful role in this human community and the world, do not leave yourself behind. Present yourself to the world with great strength, confidence and knowledge, and love. Be grand. Be full of light. That is what you are if you can see it. Have something beautiful to share, and share the living beauty and strength which is you and that you have never ceased nurturing. "Man know thyself; then thou shalt know the Universe and God."