Self interest is a driving force; it is motivation. Motivation leads to progression and without progression early man would never have gotten past learning about fire. There is no single purpose of self-interest, it is for the individual to decide, but it is my motivation to live and I am convinced that it raises the standards of life. All things naturally progress because they adapt. According to Darwin, the strong survive; that is, the members of a species best suited to their environment. Progress is a number of different things but it generally means a forward movement.
In one of its forms it is characterized by events like the industrial revolution and scientific revolution. These events are considered progressive because they have helped man control the environment around him with greater ease and precision. Self-interest serves to better my life. It encompasses both hobbies and passions. Hobbies are relaxing and promote self-enjoyment. Therefore, I work hard and endure the days of unpleasant chores because I am motivated to participate in my hobbies like racing sailboats and driving cars. Bettering my life through self-enjoyment allows me to contribute in a more affective way to society.
A person who has spent a weekend participating in their hobbies and passions will be much more relaxed than someone who has been working without any self-satisfaction. A relaxed person is a more productive person and productive people tend to give of themselves in society. Motivation towards self-enjoyment leads to an overall improvement in society. Without motivation would Einstein have had any reason to invent the theory of relativity? Self interest is the driving force behind invention and creativity. Most hobbies need capital to be participated in.
The production of capital coincides with contributions of ideas and new products to society. The advantage of inventions and theories like the theory of relativity is that they provide the building blocks for machines and appliances. Such advancements contribute to society and allow our nation to adapt to the furtherance of the current times. All modern conveniences are products of progression; geniuses were motivated by their self interest, which is most likely exploring the unknown, to developing such items as the telephone, TV and car. Self-interest is not greed, but can however lead to such.
Greed and corruption are the downfalls of self-interest and the market system. People whose motivation is to make money and nothing more have deranged priorities, in my opinion. These downfalls lead to homeless people and a world that is not perfect. The downfalls of the market system occur because people are obsessed and fascinated by power. Some people believe that money is power; to some extent this is true, but not entirely. There are people that take extreme measures to gain control of money and this leads to actions such as robbery and murder.
Gambling addiction is a disease that has its foundation in the obsession of self-interest and money. The competition and sportsmanship in sports has been corrupted by greed and has lead to less than enthusiastic play by the athletes. The rainforests of the world have been chopped down because the greed of individuals to make money off it s resources. The rainforests of the world have also been saved by environmentalists who have a self-interest in helping society and preserving the environment.
A person can have self-interest in community service and still be motivated to help others; helping others improves society as a whole. Self-interest doesnt have to be selfish or greedy. Choosing a job that gives you satisfaction and self-gratification is self-interest but it also promotes a greater place to live. There are internists that work only for their own self-promotion but there are also volunteers who work because it feels right in their heart. When I worked at Cold Spring Harbor lab I worked selfishly; I wanted something spectacular on my transcript.
However when I worked in the Oncology wing of Huntington Hospital I did it because it felt good. I was giving back to society; by assisting the elders who had once looked out for me. My efficiency was consequently heightened at the Hospital as compared to the lab. It was because of my motivation which in turn lead to a better product or work ethic. Self-interest is why America was against communism and why captivated people fight for freedom. Freedom is the ability to participate in self-interest and that is why it is so preciously defended throughout the world.
The problem with freedom is that without responsibility it can be dangerous and unjust. Freedom allows people to become individuals. Without freedom, individuals are nothing but numbers in a population. The purpose of self-interest is to allow individuals to shine and bring out whats best in them. Letting individuals be individuals is very important to the success of society and that is the purpose of self-interest. In communism the workers are deprived of pursuing their self-interests. Their jobs are given to them and they receive limited funds to pay for their endeavors.
Competition among companies and co-workers ceases to exist because there is no possibility for promotion. Workers dont have motivation and without motivation they dont work as hard. This keeps society from reaching further progression. The standard of living in communist societies is lower and the technology they have to ease daily lives is not nearly as available as it is to us because their societies arent as competitive. The incentive of individual self-interest produces competition. This competition results in the catering of goods that society wants, at the cost people are prepared to pay for.
This happens because people are driven to do whatever society is willing to pay for. Some conservative people are against the progression of society. They defend the fact that things are good and need not be changed. Many religious people are against self-interest and change; the fact is that following religion is self-interest. Conservative people are people who arent willing to take risks. They stick with what is proven and they progress very slowly, if at all. Religious people do not usually advocate self-interest but they dont realize that freedom is what allows them to take a part in their religion.
Economics was started and is motivated by self-interest. Ancient society could function without economics, however, modern culture cannot. When social life was intertwined with work and religion it was possible to not participate extensively in self-interest but people were still motivated to work because it was a means of survival. Before more efficient forms of trade and transportation were developed, people in ancient society had to produce everything essential to their life within their own small living community.
These people were motivated to work hard because if they didnt they wouldnt receive the essential requirements to live like shelter and food. In todays world where social and business life are separate it isnt possible to not have self-interest. Instead of working just to survive, people work for capital to help fund self interests, like vacations and hobbies. There isnt the same motivation in work because it isnt for a means of survival; people feel that they can take risks because they can always fall back on financial aid or well fair.
The purpose of self-interest is progression of ones self and society. The process towards self-interest is driven by motivation. It is the motivation of self-satisfaction that drives people to be passionate about items and activities. A person is an individual because what they choose to be interested in molds their personality. There would be nothing unique about people if it wasnt for self-interest; our society would be a very dull place. Self-interest drives motivation, which equates to the progression of our world.