this opposition is an odd one, because it's not so much an opposition in language between a dichotomy--for instance between cold and hot, evil and good, left or right--but between being and nothingness, or the very possibility and necessary condition of a choice between a dichotomy, and the impossibility thereof; one versus alterity ('otherwise than being'-Levinas).
one can be selfish and selfless, it seems then, consequently--in respect to the difference between where the self begins, and where the self ends. where the self ends, the limit, and where it is in fact possible not to expect us to be there--we are self-less, and the persistent emptiness and silence of the self's absence is acknowledged either as an unconditional liberation or an unconquerable anguish--and where we can be us, and us only, and where it would be ridiculous for us to pretend otherwise, where selfishness is the condition and essence of what(and how) a self is, actually. there is no contradition here, only a below and above perspective of the same being's horizon. selflessness as the understanding of the finitude and limit of the ego cogitans.
consequently: the 'sinner and the saint' has been a useful fiction (to those who need it? or those who want it for some ends? unless it is aesthetic, in which case it would be an end in itself first, and an accompaniment to life, second, only as consequent and symptom, like Plato's The Good, whose 'end' is in itself, but whose overflowing emanation of excessiveness becomes the fictional cause and condition for an accidental world, at last entrenched in the anthropocentric belief in its own false, teleological, destiny--just like Darwinism (and liberalism/Marxism), whose doctrines seek to place naive man at the top of the banality of the grocery food chain/evolutionist conveyor belt, forgetting the source, the useless, the good in itself, as opposed to the good for some thing.)
the useless fiction as the superior force, against the 'useful and productive' whose value is obscured by one purpose, then destroyed--- (just like the 'environment?' if this proposition is true, the overzealous economy of contemporary (useless) video games versus that of (useful) ecology seems a prophetic forecast of things to come). we have not yet learned (or when did we forget how?) to love nature for itself, over, beyond, and before what benefit or end it serves for us--always a preoccupation of the impoverished, desperate,and vulgar, therefore the already destroyed, never as an ascendent force self-confident in itself.