The Non-Gift of Giving

There is a common misconception about the act of “giving” we all tend to focus on at this time of year; likely because we hear so much about it.  We call it a time of giving and much of the speak is that “when we give we get back.”  Often we are told that our giving returns to us more than what we give. It is almost as if the idea of “getting back” is the purpose of such giving. Nothing could be further from the truth!

The human mind is always, always about finding reason for doing anything, giving, included.  It is the mind’s nature and the birth of ego is born in this idea that reasons must find their way into our existence and upon finding such we are born into an identity that supports the conceptual ideas we form our identity around.  Sometimes the idea that our “getting,” in return for our giving, is used as motivation to spur us to the action of giving. “Look beyond your means for now and you will receive as much or even more than you sacrificed in the “giving.”

In truth, like happiness, giving is our essence.  Remember that WE are Gods. Individually and uniquely, Gods.  It is our very nature at the level of the divine to give.  The Human in us says, “let there be light, so I may see” while the God that we are says, “let there be light so all may see.”  Giving is our inherent nature as the divine beings that we are and the idea that ego can out do that nature by promising to give back what is given is most absurd.  The idea that you must have returned to you what you gave is not giving; it is taking.  Think about it!

If we comprehend that our nature at the very core of our existence is “the giver” then no part of our existence looks for reasons why there must be a “payback” for our giving.  Remember the new Testament story of the old woman who gave her last penny to charity?  Jesus pointed to her and told those who had given of their abundance that she alone had given the most.  Why would He make such a statement?

We don’t know much about the old woman and her circumstances but we can assume that her ego was screaming at her to keep the penny as she herself was in as great a need for assistance as those she chose to give to.  What kept her from holding on to her last penny and giving all that she had?  She had found and accepted her true nature.  She gave without expectation because the “giver” was unmasked and could not be hidden by the “show” of giving only in quantity.  Those who gave more in quantity, still masked in an identity of receiving for their gifts, gave nothing of their true nature.  Theirs was only a gift; with the expected return.  Hers was a blessing; an act of godliness that reflected her connection to the divine within.  Hers was an act of power!

The act of giving is never about getting something in return.  All that we are, at our core essence, is never wanting or expecting anything in return.  The act of truly giving is a natural act.  It is an act of God and you are God!  Giving resonates in all of us because we have this essence already. Most of us have been taught to give of our abundance but this kind of giving only mitigates the egoic awareness that something else (inside) is the giver of all.

Do you want to know what you “get” when you give?  You get to be who you are.  In other words, you get to stop thinking about acts of giving and just “be” the giver that you inherently are. You get to shed egoic ideas of “who am I” and simply be “who you are” without any conversation at all telling you otherwise.  When we give we engage our inherent nature and that frees us from the egoic nature that is heavy and burdened.

What we feel when we are in service to others is the lightness that comes from being “who, or what we really are.”  The weight of mind created identity leaves for a short time and we feel this lightness and it feels so good we talk about it in egoic terms without really understanding what has happened.  We should all ask what is it about these acts of giving and service that makes us feel so light and happy?  The answer will almost always come back to something like, I got to shed “my stuff” and just be in this wonderfully natural state that was surprisingly without any thought.

If we must have a reason to give then let the reason be because it frees us from our “stuff” and lets us be, if only for a short space of time, the divine giver that we already are. Don’t attach reasons to the giving. Just give and the giving will engage an inherent nature that already is YOU.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!



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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Completely agree, Carl! Giving to get isn’t gracious giving, but what we’ve learned to do. For some types (e.g., Enneagram #2), they *need* to appear to be giving to define themselves. Yet, as you pointed out, gracious giving is one quality of our Divine Essence, like Happiness, Love, etc. When we give graciously, we’re simply expressing our Truth, and the only “reward” is the freedom to be who we are. Great post for this time of the year! Love and Gratitude to you! Alice

    • Thanks so much Alice. You read me so well. I love that. Happy Thanksgiving, Dear friend,


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