Effective Altruism

The term effective altruism is simply about asking the question:

“How can I do the most good, with the resources available to me?”

It’s non-dogmatic and it does not provide strict answers on how to go about this, unlike philosophies like libertarianism and secularism, which are answers to questions like, “How should we best govern?”

Any of the ideas commonly associated with the Effective Altruism social movement, like earning-to-give or focusing on reducing humanity’s risk of extinction, merely constitute best guesses, and are always subject to change based on new evidence and reasons.

But What if the Question is Wrong?

You only have to acknowledge that one state of affairs can be preferable to another, and by logical extrapolation, you can design states of affairs that are astronomically more preferable than others. Thus, the question of “How can I do the most good, with the resources available to me?” is fair.

Personally Arriving at Effective Altruism

The idea of maximizing impact has been a major focus in my life since I was about 17. I was googling around for ideas about life’s meaning such as “how can I do the most good”, eventually found Giving What We Can, and immediately felt like I had found my long-lost home with the ideas of effective altruism.

I soon discovered that I could reliably have an outstanding impact by donating to the most effective charities and thus prevent a lot of suffering throughout the course of my life. This gave me much more purpose and provided me with the will to carry on in the face of future challenges I faced.

Today, I feel an intense pressure to fulfill my potential and leave the world a better place. There is SO much value on the line, and frankly, I would hate to sacrifice my possible contribution by pursuing relatively dead-end, vain pursuits.

Ideas To Which I am Especially Sympathetic

How I Intend to Work in these Cause Areas

EA Link List