"Personally, I do not know whether humankind is alone in this vast universe. But I do know that we should cherish our existence on this little speck of matter... the greatest gift that could be bestowed upon us. For all practical purposes, there is only one planet Earth." - Ban Ki-Moon-
The whole idea of human beings being essentially selfish is now being challenged, as we move towards a view of evolution as a series of complex interpenetrating systems, where genes, organisms, communities, species and environments all interact with each other in a variety of ways over different time frames. It increasingly seems that humankind may be moving towards a future where co-operation, rather than competition, is the defining characteristic.
Which is good, because we simply would not survive the way we were going before.
"Our view of humanity’s origin has always been shaped by the cultural lens through which we see it, and as that lens shifts, so does our perception of what really makes us human. Is it our true nature to be selfish and competitive, or empathic and cooperative? This matters, because what we believe about ourselves has a way of becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy." - Jeremy Lent, The Patterning Instinct -