La voie de l’altruisme

SHECHEN, NEPAL – « La coopération, » selon Martin Nowak, biologiste à l’université Harvard, est « l’architecte de la créativité dans l’évolution, des cellules aux créatures multicellulaires, des fourmilières aux villages et aux villes. » A l’heure où l’humanité tente de résoudre de nouveaux défis globaux, il nous faut trouver de nouveaux modes de coopération. Le fondement de cette coopération doit être l’altruisme.

Le désir d’aider les autres sans considération pour soi-même n’est pas qu’un noble idéal. Le dévouement améliore la qualité et élève le sens de l’existence, pour nous-mêmes ainsi que pour nos descendants ; en fait, il se peut même que notre survie en dépende. Nous devons l’admettre, et avoir le courage de le dire.

L’humanité est confrontée à trois défis monumentaux : assurer à chacun des conditions de vie décentes, améliorer le degré de satisfaction tirée de l’existence, et protéger notre planète. Le bon vieux principe de rentabilité ne parvient pas à réconcilier ces exigences parce que chacune a son propre rythme d’action. Année après année, nous nous inquiétons de l’état de l’économie ; nous n’envisageons cependant notre bonheur qu’à l’échelle d’une vie, tandis que les considérations environnementales bénéficieront principalement aux générations futures.

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