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Recording Ourselves To Death

Deaths from sharks versus selfies

This is not a joke. Related reading:


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natural selection does work!

Chanson de Roland

The word narcissistic unfortunately describes far too much human behavior these days. Their is a normal degree of self interest, and then there is pathological self adoration, that is, narcissism, where nothing is as important as me and self adoration. I suppose children, teenagers and below, and some immature undergraduates can be forgiven for their narcissism, with the hope that they will grow out of it, unless some unfortunate episode of narcissism results in their permanent injury or even death.

But it is not just the young who are narcissistic. Narcissism is prevalent, if not ubiquitous, in our culture and is, I think, a clear sign of our decadence. The Internet and smartphones and tablets have resulted in this desire to display one's self to win the approval and adoration of others, most of whom one barely knows or who are complete strangers. Yet, for this reflected glow from from others, many strive in ways that they shouldn't and reveal thing that they shouldn't or contrive things that are pure fancy, and all for the likes and “likes” of those whose value and qualities are unknown. I think that one should know what someone's admiration is worth before one strives to obtain it; otherwise, you risk striving too much and venturing too much for too little or even nothing and, thus, showing yourself to be worth too little or even worthless.

I agree with the writer, supra, that natural selection will provide a cure for this by selecting against the narcissistic. But if an entire society reaches a certain level of narcissism, that may well mean that natural selection may select against our entire society.

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