how to……

Posted: November 11, 2007 at 9:24 am

make simple acts of kindness dirty….

1. do something nice for someone because it makes me feel powerful and big and generous too.

2. hold that kindness over their heads to remind them every day that once upon a time i helped them so they never forget.

3.make that critical decison that whatever kindness i did, entitles me to make judgements whenever i feel the need.

4. if i give someone money, i should keep track of every cent, and ensure i get the most bang for my buck or at least a regular payback.

5. assume that money once given buys alot entitlement even if it was a paltry sum especially if i forget the amount but never the act of writing that cheque because the act is more important than the result.

6. giving or sharing or doing something kind has a purpose for taking something back, be it power or control or a favor or two or the right to map out their life…it is just there waiting for me to use.

how to….

keep acts of kindness snow white and clean

1. when i do something do it for only one reason, because my heart tells me this is the right thing to do.

2. make my talking head and ego inside just shut up and go away.

3. understand that once a gift is given, it is no longer belongs to me. it just disappeared out of my life like it never existed and now belongs somewhere else.

4. never attach any strings to a gift for me to reel back in…it tangles both me and the recipient up and can choke us both real quick.

5. know when i am looking for something that i think i might need, and trying to get it by being kind, and then give my head a giant big shake and go shopping and buy myself something nice at the mall to make me happy instead.

6. and NEVER give anything at all out of a sense of obligation…because the second i do…. it becomes a burden of guilt to whoever i gave it to.

i try to remember that  once i do or give something, it is gone, never to be seen again. it is so easy to keep a tally sheet for who owes me and why…. but really no one owes me anything because once  i gave it away it no longer belonged to me.

i have done some truly nice things for my children but i try not to remember what they were. and my clients don’t owe me a thing, not even thanks for doing my job. the animals don’t owe me because of what it has cost me emotionally to care for them, i just give it because i wanted to.

and because i have these rules for giving, i have same rules for taking too…i try not to take dirty money, i try not to accept dirty help…. i can’t keep track of all of the strings and obligations and i don’t really want to either.  if i get lazy and accept the things not freely given, then i have just let some dirtiness into saints,  i work really hard to keep this place clean, and this is important to me, that the animals in my care are never used as an excuse for payback ever again.

and i think this is why my kids like me so much, it is just not ever a big deal. i help them when i can and i don’t when i can’t and i forget once it is all done. and the really cool thing about this, is i might have taught them about giving, that simple acts of kindness are not currency to collect and stick in the bank.

last nights fundraiser was one of those truly pure simple acts of kindness…it wasn’t for me, it wasn’t for zoe or alex…it was for animals that all of us love. i feel really good about that.

 

3 Comments on "how to……"

  • There are acts of kindness and love one does for family and loved ones and friends and animals – which can & yes, should, fall into the lily white territory. But there are other times when #3 & #4 on your first list are reasonable – when I’m donating money to a charitable organization, such as at a fundraiser, I do want to know where it’s going & how things are being done. How else can I decide whether to continue to support this work? How else can I choose among the thousands of good causes which all could use my money for something? The only way to do it IS to make judgements – to assess, to evaluate, to compare against one’s own moral compass as to what is right. And while I don’t need to track every cent, I do want to know that it’s going to something I believe in. Otherwise, why wouldn’t I just stand on the streetcorner and give money to the first person I see?

    Judgement is necessary. You’re prepared to judge donors, judge their principles, the honesty and purity of their intent – to see if they stand up to some incredible standard which you’ve set. And yet, they can’t do the reverse?

    I can’t quite understand your position about donors. I can understand that there are some gifts of time & money which come with too many strings attached. I can undersand why you’d need to turn away certain offers of help. But I don’t understand where some of these rules are coming from. Why is it wrong for people to know, to assess and to make an informed decision? Why does that tarnish their gift in some way? They can only operate out of faith & love or their gift is not worthy?

  • Carol says

    i do not believe i said anywhere that people could not decide for themselves where to spread any kind of act of kindness.
    basically in a nutshell i said how i ensure for me that it is a simple act of kindness and not an outstanding bill that will one day i will require someone to repay me for.

    but you are right, some gifts are not gifts..it has nothing to do with worthiness…it has do with with accepting something percieved as a gift that you might not be prepared to pay for down the road….that in itself could be a huge problem. 

  • Deb says

    It is my belief that if one cannot give a gift(donation) freely to a rescue, and then let it go, knowing it will be used where it is most needed, then one should keep the gift or give it to a rescue one does trust to apply it to whatever the donor deems important. I am not egotistical enough to believe I know where money is most needed in any rescue. My priorities are based on my beliefs (maybe I have a belief that all animals need seven collars and two pairs of snow booties) but the reality of rescue is not based on my beliefs. If a fence needs to be fixed, or a tire needs to be replaced, or medication needs to be purchased or the heating bill needs to be paid, I either give support or I don’t.
    A gift, freely given, is just that. Strings can be turned into nooses. Anyone who wants her/his donation to be accepted with conditions has ulterior motives, regardless of whether they realize it or accept it.

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