Apr 9, 2018

The Power of Giving

Erich Fromm, in his book The Art of Loving said "Giving is the highest act of potency. That is when we experience our strength our wealth and our power." I would add our aliveness. That is when we feel the most human, the most like our real self.

There is a true account of a bartender who went looking for a lost wallet that belonged to one of his customers. Her wedding ring was in it, causing her great distress. He searched the room to no avail, then got the idea to check the outside security cameras. There he saw the wallet on a bench. A young homeless teen came by, took the money out of it and pitched it into the nearby bay. The bartender did not stop there. He hired divers who spent hours searching, eventually finding the wallet. He returned the ring to the lady who was ecstatic. By this time, his power was activated at a very high level. He found the homeless teen who had taken the money. That boy is 17 and is now living with the bartender and his family, in school and doing very well.

That is giving at a high degree. But everything he did, we can see ourselves doing, can't we? It is a natural inclination we share; to help others, to assist, to give solace, to empower, to love. We have allowed some of our natural instincts to become dormant out of perceived fear. Should I get involved? What if I am rejected? Can I afford it? What if I fail? Is this the right thing to do? The collective perception of possible loss is so ingrained in us by advertisers and others who would seek to sell us something, that we forget what the Source of our life is. The Power we feel when we give anything unconditionally, is God in action in us. There is never a loss in authentic giving. There is immediate and lasting gain.

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