"There are a thousand hacking at the
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There is nothing intrinsically wrong with
gratification, fulfillment and
Everyone has an agenda, their own agenda that is directed toward or related to their own fulfillment, even god. Having a personal agenda and seeking your own fulfillment is part of having a self and being an individual. It is part and parcel of our psyche or soul and the way we are made. We just can't legitimately construe that there is anything wrong with this along with wanting to maximize our own fulfillment and satisfaction. Can this be done while maximizing fulfillment for others?
Basic Physical Need Fulfillment
There are different levels of fulfillment, and for mental, emotional, psychological health and wholeness we need fulfillment on each of these levels, a balance if you will. Starting on the basic level we have the "need" fulfillment of breathing air, drinking fluids primarily composed of water. Eating food and being in a benign environment are also basic needs. To protect ourselves and others even on these levels we need to be responsible, getting enough fresh air, the right fluids and foods, etc.
Higher Physical Need Fulfillment
There are other physical needs that we have that are not so immediate but nevertheless just as real. For good physical health and vitality our bodies need stimulation. We need to touch and be touched, we need exercise and the normal person needs sexual fulfillment. In order to maintain vitality for all of our sensory abilities, these all need to be exercised. If this is not done, our capability in these areas will atrophy.
The problem with hedonism is that it is at the very least unbalanced and therefore irresponsible in that the focus is too restricted at the expense of other concerns. Thus it becomes unhealthy to the wholeness of being human. At worst this focus can easily cross the line into becoming dishonorable and/or unethical, and destructive of both the individual and others. It is then a form of devaluation of ourselves and others.
Basic Spiritual Need Fulfillment
Social and emotional needs are among the basic spiritual needs. We absolutely need other human beings in our life, as no one would ultimately choose or even be able to live indefinitely without human interaction. We need to have a sense of success and accomplishment
Higher Spiritual Need Fulfillment
Values, purpose, honor, nobility and meaning are some of the higher spiritual needs that must be part of the mix for a well rounded and fully developed human being.
Maximizing our overall health and morale entails having a balanced and fully dimensional approach to our own wellbeing and society, one that goes much further than pleasure seeking.