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What do you understand by the term ‘Ethical altruism’? Do you believe in the criticism about altruism that it can hinder an individual’s pursuit of self-development, excellence, and creativity? Analyze.

Syllabus: Application of Ethics

6. What do you understand by the term ‘Ethical altruism’? Do you believe in the criticism about altruism that it can hinder an individual’s pursuit of self-development, excellence, and creativity? Analyze. (10M).

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude by Lexicon Publications.

Why the question:

There is a growing tendency in the world to see altruism in a negative light. Focusing on oneself and one’s interests are being perpetuated as a ‘good’ behaviour at all levels in the world (Ex: ‘Make America great again’).

Key Demand of the question:

To expand on the criticism given and negating the same by giving proper justification that altruism is not only in the best interests of the society but also that of the individual.

Directive:

Analyze: When asked to analyze, you must examine methodically the structure or nature of the topic by separating it into parts and presenting them in a summary.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: Define the term Ethical altruism.

Body:

  • Give some possible reasons as to why this criticism could be made by giving suitable examples. (When someone expects help due to the prevalence of altruism, they shall not be pushing themselves to realize the best of their abilities).
  • Negate the above by giving instances of how altruism doesn’t hinder the growth of an individual using proper examples. You can use the life experiences of various leaders, reformers and administrators in this answer. Ex: Harshavardhana, Ashoka, Gandhi Ji etc.

Conclusion:

Suggest how such altruistic behaviour could be encouraged in the society with particular focus on an administrator