I am quite sure, that many great thinkers, philosophers and many others, such as me, Have really thought: Are there any such thing as a completely selfless act?Maybe that is any act that makes you feel bad. Unless you like that sort of thing. Many people do, so then it is not selfless. During my student years, I actually took a course of “Free Will – Does it, or does it not exist?” – So to think about thinks that drives you crazy is just in my nature. Acting because you wanted to do good deed still has a form of selfishness in it,
and I don’t mean the reward of an action, but the motive behind an action, the reason the action was taken.
But this isn’t the complete picture. We have to ask more questions, for better understanding: Why does acting selflessly make us feel happy? Because our brains are wired that way, through either genetics, or cultural upbringing (i.e. social values) Society will punish those who don’t act selflessly to some degree. Selflessness involves personal sacrifice: you’re sacrificing yourself to some degree, to help out the community. We will be given a title, that most of us would love: We are Heroes. We are worshipped, even if it is from one person only or from a whole nation. Society has also developed measures to reward those who act selflessly. But, it gives us something. An emotion. A status. Welfare, whatever the reason is, it gives us something. And just by that, it is not a selfless act.
Dalai Lama, whom many considers a man of selfless acts, is according to me quite selfish as well. But he did have a very, very good point: “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them”