Am I selfish?

By Don Aslett

Recently, a friend showed me a little pedometer they had mounted on their shoe that counted steps to measure mileage walked. They felt it was important to track when they had reached their magical 10,000 steps for a healthier day.
How great would it be to have a similar device that measured an even more important daily count of how often we show kindness to another, or moments when we are less than generous.
Maybe our little device could keep track of all the times we say words or exhibit actions that lead to our own satisfaction and luxury, like
I
Me
Mine
More
Now
Want
Envy
Stingy
It could also keep track of kind words and actions that connote unselfishness, like
Give
Share
You
Yours
Charity
Service
Tenderness
Kindness
At the end of each day we would look at our devices and perhaps be shocked to find out how generous, kind, patient, benevolent — or the opposite — we have been.
As we grow up, we trust that our me-centered lives will evolve to be
others-centered. Most children come to us selfish, but some of them never evolve into giving adults. Learning that the whole world does not evolve around our own schedule, music, clothes, money, pleasure, animals and belongings is a sign of maturity. Living in the selfish circle of life is a sorry situation.
Being aware of other people and their needs is true maturity. The purest of all virtues is unselfishness and concern for others. The older we get, the greater our prosperity and the more we should seek to share what we have and serve others.
Until a kindness meter comes along or until our conscience is renewed and sensitive to another’s needs, I suggest we make friends with an unselfish person and follow their lead. See who they look after most. To what extent do they provide and share their personal resources? Most of us would be awe-inspired by those few people who actually live this highest of Christian values — to care for others more than they care for themselves.

Don Aslett, of McCammon, is the founder of The Museum of Clean, 711 S. 2nd Ave., Pocatello, and still enjoys giving tours to all visitors. Check out the museum’s website at www.museumofclean.com.