Saturday, 14 November 2009


To say "I love you" you have to first know how to say the I.

The above has always been one of my favourite quotes. In fact, I even had it scribbled on the wall in my hostel room in MICA. Yesterday, I found the same concept explained really beautifully in an article that someone gave me to read.

There are, the piece said, 3 relationships that define each of us as human beings:
  1. Our relationship with ourself
  2. Our relationship with others
  3. Our relationship with spirituality/god
The first, one's relationship with oneself, is the fountainhead of all else. It is what defines how we see and react to the world. What you give yourself is what you can give to the rest of the world. Love yourself and you will love the world for what it is, hate yourself and you will only find fault with the world, accept yourself the way your are, with all your flaws, and you will find the capacity to accept others without finding fault with them. Love yourself and you will find the courage to make the choices that make you happy. Selfishness, in the deepest, innermost core of every human being is important to creating common good. Only when you want the good for yourself will you be able to want good for others too.

And while Rand maybe offensive to many (the quote is from The Fountainhead), I think the piece is above is what she truly meant when she advocated self interest above altruism. True good for others can spring only from wanting the good for yourself. And as I have discovered in the last few weeks, you cannot love another unless you love yourself. You can only admire, listen, compete, compare. But you can say I love you only when you say the I.

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