Support the GITP forums on Patreon
Help support GITP's forums (and ongoing server maintenance) via Patreon
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    In a shadow of a shadow
    Gender
    Male

    Default Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Yes, another debate thread. Hulooh.

    First, a little backstory: I am a fan of the-admittedly anvillicious, but insightful-webshow known as Extra Credits (it's on the Escapist) and they recently sung the praises of a video game based charity.

    Now, that's all well good and all, except on the forums, some now-banned idiot-and I say "idiot" as in "not a troll" because he seemed to truly believe his spiel-that donating for charities is for suckers, because giving to children is an inherently selfish activity.

    Yeah. The other commenters didn't quite follow that logic, either.

    An interesting point that was raised, however, was that just because one gives to charity to make one feels better about himself, it doesn't mean the donation is "tainted" somehow-if your narcissism manifests as "I must make excessive anonymous donations", all the more power to you.

    Which brings me too my point:

    If someone is doing altruistic things for selfish reasons, does he qualify as "good"?
    My Homestuck role is Thane of Space of the Land of Insanity and Frogs.

    The Malkavians would be proud.

    ***

    Thanks to Mokipi for the Exalted avatar!

    For avatars of your own, he's on White Wolf.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Banned
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Nov 2010

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Leliel View Post
    If someone is doing altruistic things for selfish reasons, does he qualify as "good"?
    Yes.

    The reason does not matter much at all, the actions do.

    And the tricky thing is, even good folks can be selfish. For example a paladin that does good deeds to gain fame and fortune.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Colossus in the Playground
     
    Eldan's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Switzerland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    I'd go a step further and say that, if you go far enough, every possible motivation is selfish. Altruism is selfishness with more perspective.
    "Après la vie - le mort, après le mort, la vie de noveau.
    Après le monde - le gris; après le gris - le monde de nouveau.
    "

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    the Riddler's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Gotham City
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    I'd go a step further and say that, if you go far enough, every possible motivation is selfish. Altruism is selfishness with more perspective.
    Yup. That's why I don't really trust real life "good" people
    Steady supporter of Girard Draketooth's thoughts on law & paladins.
    And yet, incoherently fan of Tarquin, too.

    Avatar by Terry576


    Spoiler
    Show
    I am a:
    Chaotic Neutral Human Sorcerer
    (3rd level)

    Strength- 12
    Dexterity- 12
    Constitution- 12
    Intelligence- 14
    Wisdom- 14
    Charisma- 16

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Nov 2010

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    I'd go a step further and say that, if you go far enough, every possible motivation is selfish. Altruism is selfishness with more perspective.
    I might not go that far. For a large part this sort of claim may hold true in that good actions make people feel good, thus reinforcing the action. But there are individuals who do good actions merely because they are good.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    boomwolf's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    In your head.
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Realistic action and motives are never purely good or evil.

    However, helping others without anyone (perhaps maybe yourself) getting hurt can't be anything BUT good. even if the donation DOES hurt you (you lost money), you might still be "gaining" in the process. (becoming more respected, famous, just feeling better.)

    In order for something to be evil-it must come at the expense of others, entire as directly hurting them, or having no care for side-effects that your actions might have on them.

    Neutral actions are mostly things you do for yourself, but does hurt or risk anybody in the process. (eat, sleep, exercise, pray, meditate, etc...)


    Quote Originally Posted by Cormag81 View Post
    2117: No matter how good a debater I am out of character there is no way to logically get out of falling after your paladin kills his patron god.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    HalflingWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Leliel View Post
    If someone is doing altruistic things for selfish reasons, does he qualify as "good"?
    For the purposes of DnD, which has bright-line rules for "good" and "evil", then yes. For the purposes of "real life", I think you won't find a definite answer.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Jack DeCoeur's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    UK
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    I too am a big fan of the escapist and found this a very interesting read.

    TL;DR summary of the article:
    Law- The action itself is all that matters
    Chaos- The outcome of the action is all that matters
    Good- Equal care for all sentient beings
    Evil- Only those very close to oneself (or perhaps only you) matter

    It actually lines up with my personal feelings on alignment quite well.

    Anyway, as far as the alignment system in that article would place it, well, a LG person would see such an action as 'Good' (the action is good, the consequences don't matter) whilst a CG person would see the action as, at least partly, selfish (the result of the action matters) although in this case the result still helps people, so the action would likely be, in the grand scheme of things still be considered 'Good' by people with this outlook on life.

    Edit: In answer to your question- In D&D, yes the action would be considered 'Good' as both the action itself and (at least part of) the result are also 'Good'.
    Last edited by Jack DeCoeur; 2010-12-24 at 09:22 PM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2009

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Gamer Girl View Post
    Yes.

    The reason does not matter much at all, the actions do.
    So if I care for the sick and wounded, help them recover or die in peace, and just happen to be gathering the accumulated disease-energy in the area of my hospice to summon a hideous demon lord that will annihilate all life, I'm a good guy?
    Sounds wrong.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Sucrose's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Midwest U.S.

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinnicht View Post
    So if I care for the sick and wounded, help them recover or die in peace, and just happen to be gathering the accumulated disease-energy in the area of my hospice to summon a hideous demon lord that will annihilate all life, I'm a good guy?
    Sounds wrong.
    The caring for the sick and wounded is still good. However, your final action, summoning a hideous, world-ending demon lord, is so very evil that all your years of service are totally overwhelmed by the evil of your summoning, putting your alignment properly back at evil.
    My Unitarian Jihad name is Brother Rail Gun of Sweet Reason. Get yours!

    Thanks to Cealocanth and PersonalSavior for my avatars!
    Spoiler
    Show



  11. - Top - End - #11
    Colossus in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Dinosaur Museum aw yisss.
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinnicht View Post
    So if I care for the sick and wounded, help them recover or die in peace, and just happen to be gathering the accumulated disease-energy in the area of my hospice to summon a hideous demon lord that will annihilate all life, I'm a good guy?
    Sounds wrong.
    Probably a better way of wording the original question is "does the action still qualify as Good?" Because a single action does not a whole alignment make.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    In a shadow of a shadow
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    Quote Originally Posted by Keinnicht View Post
    So if I care for the sick and wounded, help them recover or die in peace, and just happen to be gathering the accumulated disease-energy in the area of my hospice to summon a hideous demon lord that will annihilate all life, I'm a good guy?
    Sounds wrong.
    ...Dude?

    Maybe because that's an evil action to begin with.

    You're just using the hospital as a cover for your real actions, and by the looks of it, diverting suspicions. Very much a non-altruistic deed.
    Last edited by Leliel; 2010-12-24 at 11:44 PM.
    My Homestuck role is Thane of Space of the Land of Insanity and Frogs.

    The Malkavians would be proud.

    ***

    Thanks to Mokipi for the Exalted avatar!

    For avatars of your own, he's on White Wolf.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Telasi's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Virginia, USA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Alignment, Motivations, and Actions

    It's no longer altruism if you have a selfish motive, in my opinion. I'd call it a firmly neutral act with good leanings, but I'm known to play fast and loose with alignments and weigh intent along with action.
    Snickett avatar by me.

    I draw custom OotSatars. I'm wearing one now, and you can check out samples in my Gallery.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •