Definition: selfless regard for or devotion to the welfare of others

People Who Exemplify This Quality: In the spring of 1991 a six-year-old girl found a bottle on a New Jersey beach. It contained two dollars. It also held a note: “Do something good with this.” She decided to give it to the homeless by giving somebody a meal. With the community’s help and her altruistic attitude, she was able to provide sixty homeless people lunch for one day.

Quote: The individual can take initiatives without anyone’s permission. … You do not belong to you. You belong to the universe. The significance of you will forever remain obscure to you, but you may assume that you are fulfilling your significance if you apply yourself to converting all your experience to the highest advantage of others. — Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983) American futurist

Comment: In order to acquire altruism, and to experience altruistic behavior, submit yourself to the difficulty of recognizing the needs of other people. You may have to expose yourself to injustice or prejudice. There is opportunity to turn any “unfortunate” situation into a fortunate one. Each struggle blesses you with good qualities.

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