In order to help others we must first be able to help ourselves to live a honest existence. The saying “doctor heal thyself”, has much wait with me. Carl Jung also said “in order to teach first know your self”. To practice a effective altruism is extremely difficult as my cultural and genetic background will always cloud my decisions. To fully appreciate the consequences of actions is near impossible.
We are hear to serve others, is a principle of Buddhist thinking and could be extended to a general altruistic thought. The problem becomes what is serving? In some cases it could be to satisfy our own ego and others even the best intensions be destructive. The stolen children of the first australian people is a example of that thinking. Christian missions destroying the indigenous cultures so loosing much valuable wisdom, once again is well intentioned actions with poor consequences.