In the US, we seem to be living in a reality-TV culture, where bad behavior is not discouraged, and in fact is often rewarded. The more outrageous the better! Zen Buddhism teaches that a wider pendulum swing is not necessarily a better pendulum swing. Our meditation practice brings us in closer contact with our True Nature, and one of the ways that is outwardly manifested is through the application of the Four Immeasurables: Loving-kindness, Compassion, Sympathetic Joy, and Equanimity.
The "Self-iness" of the wide swing gives way to a narrower motion, where there is less concern for "I, I, I, I, I," and more concern for others...even the ones that maybe we don't like so much.
When to others it might look like we're being uncaring, detached, aloof, or indifferent, we are actually less perturbed by things we know are impermanent, and when you get down to it on a practical level, just really not that important. Our practice takes us there naturally. It's not like we're taking Zen-ax as a tranquilizer, we're just returning to a more tranquil state...the one that's always been there.
Click on the title to hear the Dharma talk from June 11, 2015.