"Giving" is the greatest opportunity for you to express who you are and how you see yourself in relationship to others and your environment in the moment.
When you walk by a beggar and ignore his outstretched hand-you are making a personal statement about yourself, how you feel about the beggar or what he is doing. We make judgments about the situation based on our own perceptions about the one asking for the handout. There are very few of us who could not give him something, if only a few words of encouragement. My own personal view is I would much rather teach a man to fish, than to feed him. In other words if there is the beggar, a volunteer who would go out and fish and give his catch to the beggar, and the one who would teach the man to fish-I would rather give to the one who would teach.
The beggar doesn't give a damn about being taught how to fish, if his immediate need is to satisfy his hunger. So giving to the one who would teach is the least desirable course of action in the moment. Giving to the volunteer who would go out and fish and give away his catch does little for the immediate needs of the beggar who is hungry-now! Now giving money to the beggar may not resolve the hunger issue if the money is really needed to buy drugs or something else. Can you trust a beggar who has learned to lie and come up with unique stories to get your money-can he be trusted.
Giving to the one who would go out and fish and give away his catch would seem to be a better solution. However, if there are beggars on the street starving, where is his catch going? How much of the donations going to him are being spent on his overhead and personal expenses-can he be trusted to use the money to return fish to the hungry? So maybe it is wiser to use your money to support the one who would do the most good in the first place. Give it to the one who would teach the beggars to fish, so they would no longer have to beg for food and be self sustaining. We all have heard about programs to help the hungry which are corrupt. Money donated to these groups or individuals is funneled into their own pockets and the needy do not receive benefit from your donation. Who are you to trust, how is the beggar going to be fed? None of these people seem to be responsible.
There is only one person who can be responsible, and it is you. If you see yourself as a giving or caring person in the moment, then it would be incumbent upon yourself to give when the opportunity comes up-not for the sake of the one who is in need, but because it is an opportunity for you to express yourself as caring or giving. All life declares itself as “this" or “that" in any particular moment. Guilt should never be part of the equation of giving. It is a lie to give when you do not feel liking giving. It is the worst blasphemy-you are denying who you really are and your feelings. In the true spirit of giving, you give to yourself-not to the other. You receive the greatest benefit from giving, if it is done from the heart and in the moment. You receive an immediate benefit in the act itself. It is only when your mind starts to contemplate your action do you feel anything else. If you give for yourself first, then it doesn't matter that your donation is going to be used to buy drugs or cigarettes, alcohol or anything else. Your giving was a true expression of how you felt in the moment-it is life expressing itself in all its glory. You gave not to another, but to yourself, although the other will receive benefit by your giving.
Over the last six years my web site has cost me thousands to operate and maintain. Three years ago I added a link for those who felt the desire to donate. When I started this site I was aware of the expense of maintaining it and the site survives. I added a link as a gift to those who could see value in the material and purpose of the site. I added it for their benefit, because they have realized the value and wanted to donate something of value in return. It was an opportunity to declare their value and appreciation.
It was the greatest gift I could give to my visitors. If one appreciates value then one gives value back because they are aware of their own value. If one does not see value, they do not give value back-they see themselves as valueless in the moment. If you do not see yourself as having value, then you cannot give value. Value can only be experienced when it is given.
The next time you are given the opportunity to give, respond to your intuition first and act on it immediately. Simply give or do not. But the most interesting thing, is to listen to your internal dialogue if you do not give. It will be a reminder of how connected or disconnected from spirit you really are.
Who gives the greater gift, the one who is in need or the one who needs to give-the one in need of course? When you stop to think before giving, what you are doing is questioning your own value. This is neither a good thing nor a bad thing-it is a simple recognition of how you see yourself in the moment.
When you give because it is your true nature to do so, you will always receive an immediate reward-recognition of self. It is the greatest gift anyone can receive-it is a gift of life. Life always seeks to declare itself as “I am. " The donations themselves become meaningless to you-once given, it is no longer yours-neither are any expectations. Donations are not donations if there is an expectation-they become payment in advance for something you seek later.
Never miss the opportunity to give-you will always receive an immediate reward! If you want to feel good now, go out and look for someone to give to. Give to yourself first and others will benefit!
Roy E. Klienwachter is a resident of British Columbia, Canada. A published author, a student of NLP, New Age Light Worker, Teacher and Phenomenologist. Roy's books and articles are thought provoking, and designed to empower your imagination, and take you to places you would never have thought of.
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