The Virtue is Selflessness and the Saboteur is Selfishness.
Turns out selflessness always benefits the self.
Selfish comes from fear. Fear of not being recognized, not getting the proper amount of delight, yumminess or recognition. Selfishness is all about me and mine. Selfishness seems like the normal way to feel. Sometimes we resent taking care of others and we say, I’m so busy taking care of everyone else that I don’t do what I want to do. The practice of selflessness helps us to remember that we really are doing what we want to do, we really do want to take care of one another. We’re just so afraid of it not coming back to us, or someone getting more than they deserve.
Every time we receive something from someone without a sense of gratitude, selfishness is ruling our heart. Every time we’re petty and withholding we’ve allowed selfishness to rule our day. Every time we cheat the line, every time we’re self centered, self possessed, self important, self, self, self, eventually, it deteriorates into selfishness.
Serving the homeless a meal is certainly selflessness, but when we serve our family by cleaning the garage, without anyone asking us to, this is also an act of selflessness. When we do this act without any ulterior motive we have beaten selfishness. If we’ve presented cleaning the garage as selfless, when it was actually done with an ulterior motive, it’s an act of selfishness not selflessness.
Most acts of love have some degree of selfishness in them, ranging from a minute degree to completely self-centered. If you’re attempting to be selfless, that’s the best. Extending a helping hand or going out of your way is freeing your heart of the bitter bite of selfishness. When we feel like we don’t have to be generous, then we’re inviting small mindedness into our life. A selfish moment is when you think to yourself, I don’t have to be nice — I don’t care if I ruined their time — I don’t have to say I’m sorry.
Selfishness makes us brood and withdraw. If we let it fester for a long time within us, the quality of our life will deteriorate. It can make us cheat, and lie for very little in return. Selflessness is a practice, whereas selfishness is a bad habit. The best part about bad habits is that they’re replaceable. Bad habits can be forgotten because we put our energy into the practice of good habits.
The Yogi’s teach us that there are several branches of Yoga, and one of them is called Karma Yoga.This type of Yoga is about giving service to others, it’s a way of life. They say this is the best path to enlightenment. Translation, selflessness keeps everybody free because nothing is owed. Selfishness always comes with a price, sometimes a very high price.
Selflessness doesn’t require religion, philosophy or even education for that matter. This type of Yoga is perfect for those who are secular or Atheists. The only requirement is the desire to purify your mind and heart. To work for the sake of working, to serve for the sake of serving and to love for the sake of loving.
Peace be with you