Friday, January 8, 2010

Secrets About Giving

By Masami Sato

Here is the secret to get what one wants. It is just giving. The reasons for it are based on the well-known philosophical dictum "Which comes first, the chicken or the egg?" The egg, and the chicken that is born out of it, create the circle of life, and form the basis for a profound comparison for attaining and giving what one wants: the circle of joy. This brilliant concept is analyzed in the clear voice and lucid prose of Masami Sato, the author of the book named ONE.

As human beings, most of us have yearnings for different kinds of things. And of course, the fundamental principles of economics tell us that while needs are unlimited, resources are not. This makes us think that the more resources we have, the more yearnings we would be able to satisfy. As such we tend to safeguard our resources. We would then feel that giving away these resources or splitting it between many would lessen the portion that can be used to get what we desire. This is the conventional win-lose strategy that is being played out.

Then, is it true?

What if the answer was "no"? What if it actually contradicts the secret of getting more? What if the secret to get more is simple - by giving more?

One can get something just by giving something else. Exactly the way one can have eggs by raising chickens. As simple as that. Normal. Automatic. And it is a completely joyful experience.

First, let us start with a small comparison to explain things.

Chicken and Egg - The Cycle of Life

Many a philosopher has come out with this question from the beginning of time, "Which comes first, the chicken or the egg?"

There is a simple answer to this unending doubt. It is that the question is unimportant, since both chicks and eggs are here now. Nevertheless, if one wants a greater effect, one can choose to start somewhere.

Giving and Receiving: the Circle of Joy

What if we asked a different question? "Which comes first, giving or receiving?"

Again, if we want a better outcome, we should choose to start somewhere. Giving off things to others is certainly easier than striving to get it first!

What happens if we are trying to get it first?

If we want to have something, naturally we try to get it. And we try to hold on to it after getting it. This is very natural to do-it makes sense intellectually.

But the real results of 'trying to get' are often not abundance and real long-term rewards.

For example, hoping to see others happy is not at all about deriving joy from them, or manipulating them to become happy. It is about how much happiness we can give them and thereby share with them. Full stop.

So how do we begin to get what we desire?

By starting from the other end of the circle- by giving generously!

When we give first before we actually fully have what we really want - what we dream of - we send a very powerful message to ourselves that says, "there is enough, and more will come". It allows us to experience the joy today - the joy of giving.

All we need to do is give out the love in ample measures to others. It just returns to us. Giving love is the only way to be fully loved. When we acknowledge the greatness of others' achievements, and their great qualities, again, that recognition comes back to us. They recognize us, because we are ready to recognize them.

In the same way, if we wanted to have enough in our life materially, financially and emotionally, we just need to share the things we want generously with others.

Some would give more physically by giving their time. Some would give more financially by giving money away. The people who give more (time, money, kindness, love, ideas) have more of these things because that's the balance. And balance is the natural law of life.

Just keep in mind the rule of the game

Rule one: never hope to get anything in return when a thing is given.

When we have the anticipation that giving involves 'getting' something back, we become unhappy when we do not see the thing returning to us fast. We may even feel unhappy towards the one who gets the gift. And having a negative feeling for someone is definitely not a right state of affairs! So we can know the real pleasure of giving when we are doing it with the awareness that we are actually doing it for ourselves - we are doing it for our own pleasure!

Losing to succeed, giving to receive.

In the beginning it may look as if we are losing. However, at some stage we recognize that taking things without giving is not an acceptable life pattern. And we have been aware of it all throughout. That is why tithing has been a normal part of the lives of many people who were leaders. And they did not do it with any fanfare so it was not done to gain popularity. It was done because it was a way of life.

Take a look around. 'Simpler' living things do it naturally. The bumblebees pollinate the flowers as they receive the honey so more flowers bloom in abundance. Naturally. That's the game. They do not do it for conscience or justice. That is why they create such sustainability without even trying.

Giving to another is just a role of who we are, it is the same as having; nothing more, nothing less. No confusion, no strings attached, just letting go easily.

The gist of getting more can be summarised into two steps: Give first, and do not hope to get anything in return.

When we let go and give generously, what we want will be delivered to us. Naturally.

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