Monday, December 1, 2008

Conscious Giving and Receiving

What is the essence of giving and receiving?

Now that may seem to be a simple question, but follow it through for a few moments. How often do we give a person something because they really need it or want it? How many times have we given gifts because we think it is what is expected of us on the occasion? How many times do we give gifts simply to curry favor with the other person? How many times have we given our children a gift because other children have one just like it, and we don't want them to feel left out?

Have you ever been the recipient of a gift that you didn't want or need, because it filled the need of the giver to try and score points with you somehow, rather than a real heartfelt effort? Where did those gifts end up? Yard sales? Thrift shops? Passed on to someone else when you had to come up with something but didn't really care to put a lot of effort into it? The garbage?

How many times is our giving simply conforming to social convention, rather than coming from the heart? How differently would we approach gift giving if we let our heart direct us?

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