Selflessness is often made out to be the pinnacle of human altruism and also spiritual achievement – selfless service, “sublimating” the self in the pursuit of God are examples of this.
The question however is whether it is possible for anyone to be “truly selfless?” The fact is, that “identifying with our self is the only way we know to retain our individuality” The day we lose this ability to identify with our self is the day we cease to exist as individuals.
This cessation of identity which can happen through even a hemorrhage to certain part(s) of the brain is often touted as great spiritual achievement when in reality that person could very well be delusional and/or hallucinatory – Jill Bolte Taylor writes about this phenomenon in her magical bestseller My stroke of Insight or you could listen to her at:
When you look at it dispassionately, you will see that every act however selfless, is born out of an inherent selfishness – even the very desire to attain to “god-hood” or “avatar-hood” can be fulfilled only through a single-minded pursuit of that goal. The human race has survived and prospered only because of the “selfish gene” embedded deep with each of us…