Possessiveness and greed breed scarcity and poverty
Some people are so scared to not have enough. From fear of poverty, they try to grab as much as possible. Unfortunately, it will never be enough. And it will never satisfy. They are doomed to feel deprived.
But there is a way for everyone, the poor and the wealthy, to feel rich.
The Sages say: Be happy with what you have.
I have an addition to that. Give up on any fixation with receiving enough or even getting anything at all. Spend your time giving.
Don’t give away so much that the people who depend on you get nothing. Charity does start at home. Yet, don’t just give to ‘your kind of people.’ That still seems like keeping all the goodies for yourself.
Yet, don’t give away your basic needs and a little reserve unless you’re already surrounded by generosity. You also may want to hold on to a little extra to have a little freedom. Don’t hoard — grant to yourself.
Trying to live more modestly, don’t go overboard and do/throw away stuff you’d come to regret (childhood pictures). Ask your best friend.
While everyone deserves your smile, be thoughtful and don’t give stuff to people who can’t handle it. Don’t give money to a drug addict, friendliness to someone who finds friendliness scary.
Don’t sacrifice your life. It’s better to live for ideals than to die for them.
Learn (Again) to Give
Don’t underestimate the test of being wealthy. The more you possess, the harder it’ll be to be generous, and so, to feel rich. (And when you ‘made’ a lot of money, a lot of people lost money — you want that?)
Reject religious, anarchistic, and Buddhist blanket denial of ownership. When no one owns, generosity can’t flourish. Let’s at least own our time.
When you give to people, most people will return the favor. You won’t lack a thing. But don’t give in order to receive. Don’t invest. Give because you want to live in a world where generosity reigns and to be yourself and express your deep inner wish to give constantly and happily.
When you serve G^d, don’t do so for a reward. Don’t even do it because you should or must. Do it because you’d love to. And if it pleases G^d, He could reward you. But, that’s His responsibility to check, not yours. If He would not reward your effort, it would be hard to keep it up because that would be so unfair and unjust. And G^d loves us, so, He will reward us — no worry. But, don’t serve Him in order to get.
Do you really give to charity and people in need to contribute, or as an investment for a good return (a good name, awe, Divine reward)?
A place set up for prayers, organized, clean, with tables and chairs, light, possibly heating or air conditioning, books, may have a charity box for itself. But, your gift won’t be philanthropy. It’s payment for rendered services, showing you’re grateful, that you rather give than receive.
Reluctantly giving is better than not assisting at all. But you urgently need to find out how to give from the heart, not to build up resentment.
Be honest, not just with money but with everything. If you can’t say the truth, shut up, change the subject, or walk away. Don’t makeup stories. Only constant integrity can give you peace of mind and reliable friends.
Don’t work to get money but to do a good job and chip in. (If they underpay you, you can still demand a raise.)
Give young ones because you like to invest in the future. Don’t expect anything in return. If you wouldn’t get anything back, it will be hard to keep giving and not become bitter. But generally, people feel resistance to return a favor when they feel obligated. If the ‘free’ gifts weren’t exactly free but had expectations attached. Don’t calculate how much you’re entitled to, supposedly. Kids can never pay you enough, anyway.
And say thank you and feel grateful for everything you receive. For others to see your joy to receive and you not demanding gifts make it easier to give you more. But, you give thanks, not to get more (although it works like that), but because you don’t want to be ungrateful.
Have a partner whom to give all s/he dreams of and more. If needed, give your partner ideas about what you need. But refuse to spend your prime relationship grabbing, demanding, and grumping about whatever you supposedly lack. If your partner is unwilling to become generous, split up and seek someone else who can dare to be generous too.
When you receive something, it’s nice as long as it lasts. But, when you freely give someone anything, you may remember that forever. If you really want to receive, give.
And, don’t sweat the small stuff. A smile, compliment, wink, thumb up.