Excerpt for No Mist up Mount Malindang by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

No Mist Up Mount Malindang

by TF Badilla

Copyright © 2019 Teddy Francisco B. Badilla

Smashwords Edition

All rights reserved. Reproduction in part or whole is strictly prohibited.

Table of Contents




Selfishness and Spatial Death

Why Selfishness Frustrates

Selfishness Is Great, If You’re Some Great White Shark

Spatial Death

Jaws. Too

Selfishness Frustrates, Selflessness Satisfies

Self and Other


No Mist up Mount Malindang

Happiness, Too

Happiness and the Sciences

Human Happiness

On Second Thought

Jewel in the Milky Way


Why I Don’t Quite Agree with Ayn Rand

How Biology, Psychology and Mathematics Conspire to Make Selfishness Frustrating to Humans

About the Author

Other Books by the Author


Why does selfishness suck the air

out our selfish lungs, rather than

channel air into them?

Why does egoism, with its supposedly

rational premise in self-preservation,

eventually fail to deliver on its promise

of individual happiness?

Why does selfishness frustrate us humans?

Why does selfish success fail

to make us happy?

This little book endeavors

to answer big

with poems.


Your life is

your Mediterranean cruise to

Corsica, Nice, St. Tropez,

Florence, Venice, Sicily,

Athens, Corfu, Santorini,

Dubrovnik, Istanbul, Varna,

Alexandria, Cyprus and Tunis.

Then selfishness would be a


that calls port

only in Ako Ra.


The self is a dead end

(there being only one of self),

a terminus in space,

when made

the destination of one’s journey:

the self is rich reference

but poor goal preference.

The self goes lively

as a springboard of endeavor

but dies a dud as the depressing

achieved goal:

a goal

of spatial terminality


termination of endeavor

in space.

The selfish make

for spatial zombies:

alive in time,

but endeavor-dead in space

at the self.

Selfishness and Spatial Death


lets you live on

in time

but brings

you death

in space

at the terminus




makes you to

get nowhere



Why Selfishness Frustrates

(The Explanation to Egoist John Galt’s Depression)


terminates in space

at the self

but life pushes on in space

beyond the self.

Hence, the human


with Rand’s selfishness:

endeavor termination

holding life back.

Selfishness Is Great, If You’re Some Great White Shark

(It Sucks When You’re Human)

Selfishness stops you cold when you succeed

At it: what now of wine, what now of all

That mega-pleasure cruise to Mars? Indeed,

There howls this hollowness in ego-call!

For we are humans and, to live, we speak

Of meaningthat clear call of consequence

Beyond the terminus of selfwe seek

To go beyond one’s gold and affluence.

For, life pushes way beyond Rand’s ego trip:

I seek to give to our grandchildren what

Good this human self may bring, and then to slip

Into my sunset blink forgetting that.

Life looms way larger than the self I see;

Life glows a grandeur greater than this me.

Spatial Death

It is in the nature of being alive

to keep goingin time and space.

And it is in the nature of being

selfish to stop in space at self.

And so the selfish go

at odds

with life.

Jaws, Too

The great white shark


presumably not self-aware.

And so it cannot

identify a self

the self that stands in space as

the terminus

to its feeding endeavors.

So don’t worry about the great white:

selfishness does not make it sick

with being stranded in space

at the self.

Selfishness Frustrates, Selflessness Satisfies

Life seeks continuance.

And selfishness continues on in time

but terminates in space at the self.

Thus selfishness frustrates

self-aware human life.

Selflessness, on the other hand,

carries on in both

time and space beyond the self

in the infinite plurality that other can be.

And so selflessness satisfies life

in the self-aware human being.

Self and Other

Selfishness says I am

more significant than other.

It insists on life-preservation

in terms of me.

Selfishness eventually frustrates

this rational, other-aware human

with a life nowhere beyond self.

Selflessness observes other

as being significant as I am.

It takes to life-furtherance

in terms of us.

Selflessness satisfies

this rational, self-aware human

with a life beyond the self.


Selflessness is

not about losing the


Rather, it is about

winning with you

and him

and her

and the infinite plurality that is


No Mist up Mount Malindang

Once I would view my sea and sky and some

From up the eastern slope of Malindang;

With no one to take me to or wall me from,

My silent, solitary moments sang.

Up in that full embrace of time and space

And self, I’d hear the songs of distant other:

Our human head and heart find means to place

You there right next to Jamie, Jean and Peter.

Somewhere, from some grain-sized sequoia seed,

A mountain of a tree would grow that big:

My sea of peopletired of one man’s greed

Would clean up their palace by the Pasig;

And sun shone still upon that dandy din,

When words wore down the wall in brave Berlin.

Happiness, Too

Happiness is

the satisfaction of life’s push

for life’s furtherance not only in time

but also in space.

Happiness is life finding

its lease and consequence



Breath, drink and food

sustain life through time

and bring happiness that

terminates in space at the self.

But love, friendship, outgoing concern

and affirmative interaction (generosity, gratitude)

with infinite other

sustain life through space

beyond the self.

Human happiness is life finding

its clock and

its floor and

the dance of self with other.

Happiness and the Sciences

(Live and Let Live)

Happiness goes as good chemistry between

Biology and physics: life finding

Continuance in time and spacelike we’d seen

With two kids taking turns cream-in-cone-licking.

Caviar, French wine and easy breath soon die

Upon the selfeven as you live.

The self’s a bump in space, and so you try

(Ask Bill Gates) to get past self by way of give.

For, that’s how human life finds spice in space:

To get to self, then through to other.

The happy soul is just the candid case

Of you not dumping spacetime in your locker.

I might not find my happiness, but then

I’d make it find me once and times again.

Human Happiness

No pain, just gain of pleasures in my life:

So Epicurus would of happiness.

To thinkand live upright, like the virtuous wife;

Thus would Aristotle have of it, no less.

His here and now, so Kahneman observes,

Could differ from what he’d recall of then.

Still, others find and string up for themselves

Some alphabetics, do’s and don’ts for when.

And so the happy life can word-elude us,

Even as it lifts us buoyant in our days;

It sends us offus, children on a bus

Or tandem bikeson to our laughter ways!

We may, or not, agree on what we’re shown;

Life gives us each the chunks his or her own.

On Second Thought

A poem

should not mean






Of course, there goes the arguable

position for a poem to



Jewel in the Milky Way

(First appeared in Our Storied Self)

Are Steuben crystals cat-purr pure?

One crystal stokes the dark far truer:

Man catches fire in flight to free

The shadows in his galaxy!

A little girl once ambled down

The garden path in her sleeping gown

To cull some morning flower there

It was the rarest rose to her!

So I meander down her wake

To catch that call true to Truth’s make

As I must sail my mists and hate,

So to fulfill my beaching fate.

The stars may storm the royal rules

Of gravity and bray like mules;

But man wields weighty words so terse

And stultifies the universe!


(First appeared in The Sense in Selflessness)

Teresa of Calcutta looked

Upon her Asian poor

Took pen to paper, and she booked

Dates with the open door.

A house is for to live in;

Stored value, to expend.

The life lived to itself makes din

That empties in the end;

Life lived to others makes for song

To sing, for which our reasons long.

The hoarded bills and bullions make

For elevated stock:

But Randian self and gold would wake

To spite each other, mock

The musings neath the question tree.

A human just must mean, to be.

Why I Don’t Quite Agree with Ayn Rand

(Rand’s Philosophy Prohibits Philanthropy)

Selfishness is already our nature and norm.

And so to insist on it as a philosophy

is needless devolution from humanhood to sharkhood.

(No offense intended for the shark.)

We need to breathe, to drink,

to eat: in each of those three counts,

a selfishness. True.

But if we are to find human happiness

(or, if happiness is to find us as humans),

we need to learn and live what goes

beyond selfishnesswe need

to make our human norms dynamic.

For, we are not sharks:

we are self-aware and rational humans.

The self-aware geometer in

each of us

tells us that the


as goal of endeavor,

marks the end of the selfish road.

(For selfishness cuts down every selfish endeavor

dead at the self.)

And endeavor indicates life.

And so the life in us requires

that we not be leashed to a tree:

we need to go beyond any tree

be that the tree of knowledge or of life.

Or of self.

For I would rather (from what I know of life)

live seventy years as a human being

than swim 400 million years

as a shark.

How Biology, Psychology and Mathematics Conspire to Make Selfishness Frustrating to Humans

Life pushes at us for its furtherance in space.

Self-awareness enables the subject self “I”

to find the object self “me”.

The geometer in us makes us to

identify the unique object self “me”

as one finite point in space

a dead end in space

as the goal of endeavor in self-pursuit

(a dead endthere being only one of it).

The push for furtherance

finding a dead end

makes for frustration.

And that is how

selfishness (or self-pursuit)

frustrates the breathing,


and geometrizing Ayn Rand.

Other (as opposed to self)

goes geometrically identified

as infinite plurality

an infinite set of points in space,

or infinite space itself.

Life’s push for spatial furtherance

finding infinite space

makes for satisfaction.

And that is how


satisfies Bai Fangli, Teresa of India,

Oprah, Warren, and Bill.


I hope you enjoyed reading this little book, as much as I enjoyed writing it!

TF Badilla

About the Author

Husband. Father of five. Former teacher, former brewery chemist. Self-published writer. Born in 1962 … and gratefully celebrating the birthdays!

Other Books by the Author

The Sense in Selflessness

Our Storied Self

Between Manhattan and Mindanao

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