RICHARD: … I was just making the point that, although it is hypothetically correct that the elimination of the instinctual passions would be the elimination of ‘I’/‘me’, it does not work that way in practice (for reasons such as already explained). Not only is it dangerous it is an impossibility … only altruistic ‘self’-immolation will do the trick.
RICHARD: Properly speaking the word ‘altruistic’ is not a word for a feeling but a word for behaviour or action that benefits others at the expense of self (altruism is the very antithesis of selfism), such as fighting to the death to protect the young, defend the group or secure the territory, and as such could evoke any number of feelings … such as fear, thrill, courage, excitement, exhilaration, euphoria and so on.
RESPONDENT: I hear what you are saying but I am not tuned in to the altruistic instinct.
RICHARD: As it is instinctive it arises as the need arises … just as its concomitant courage does.
Affectiving caring as the genesis of its key (benevolence)
RICHARD: Start with where one is at now (where one is not yet at will emerge of its own accord as one proceeds): as you say ‘I don’t care about doing it for everybody’ – implying that ‘I’ only care about doing it for ‘me’ – then that is where ‘I’ am at now.
Do ‘I’ feel the feeling of caring about doing it for ‘me’ or not?
RESPONDENT: Sorry for all the repetition. I was just trying to get at what’s missing. It is obvious now that what is missing is altruism. You said above that altruism is a group instinct and this instinct is just not activated. I can only see altruism in terms of love and compassion and that is not it.
RICHARD: Indeed not – in this context love and compassion lead to ‘self’-surrender not ‘self’-sacrifice – whereas benevolence is the key to altruistic ‘self’-immolation for the benefit of this body and that body and every body.
And the feeling of caring already mentioned (further above) is the genesis of being benevolent.