SHARING: The more you GIVE – the more you GET
I have been thinking about this since ever as to why people are such misers when it comes to sharing something with others. It need not be money or tangible assets always, but immortal possessions like knowledge, love, care, concern, empathy – these all should be shared in abundance. Or is it that we have become so self-centered that these words do not ring any bell in our mind any more when we hear them!
I recall an incidence when I was talking to a couple of aspiring students who since hailed from country side, did not have any direction about which path to tread on in terms of higher education. I liked their enthusiasm and drive so much that I sat with them to discuss about the options that they could look at.
The discussion went on for almost half an hour and we all were completely into it, with me asking them questions ranging from their current school to their interest areas in general. They were very excited talking to me, answering all my queries; may be with a feeling that it might take them a bit closer to defining their careers.
In the meanwhile, one of my relative was watching us closely for past 30 mins and was not very comfortable (all I could read from his face). Suddenly he called for me saying he wanted to talk to me about something urgent. When I walked up to him, he said some very strange words to me. He said, ” I know you are knowledgeable, but why are you wasting your knowledge like that. This way anyone will walk up to you and you will end up talking to many people for that much of time”.
That didn’t go very well with me internally and I somehow started feeling sorry for the poor fellow. It was later that I realized that he was actually POOR – poor because he didn’t have the knowledge to be shared and most of all he did not have the empathy towards fellow humans.
This brings me to sharing more insight into the art of SHARING, which is also preached by many saints and spiritual leaders. These words to some extent do depict my personal view about CHARITY vs SHARING.
We always hear them preaching that if you have love, share it. WHATSOEVER you have, share it, spread it all over; let it spread like the fragrance of a flower going to the winds.
They talk about sharing – and with a totally different quality in it. If you have, you share. Not because by sharing you will be helping others, but by sharing you will be growing. The more you share, the more you grow.
And the more you share, the more you have whatsoever it is. It is not only a question of money. If you have knowledge, share it. If you have meditation, share it! If you have love, share it. WHATSOEVER you have, share it, spread it all over; let it spread like the fragrance of a flower going to the winds. It has nothing to do particularly with poor people. Share with anybody that is available, and there are different types of poor people.
A rich man may be poor because he has never known any love. Share love with him. A poor man may have known love but has not known good food – share food with him. A rich man may have everything and has no understanding – share your understanding with him; he is also poor. There are a thousand and one types of poverty. Whatsoever you have, share it.
But remember, it does not mean that this is a virtue and God is going to give you a special place in heaven, that you will be specially treated. By sharing here now you will be happier. A hoarder is never a happy man. A hoarder is basically constipated. He goes on hoarding; he cannot relax; he cannot give. He goes on hoarding; whatsoever he gets, he simply hoards it. He never enjoys it, because even in enjoying it you have to share it – because all enjoyment is a sort of sharing.
Joy is always a sharing. Joy does not exist alone.
How can you be happy alone? Absolutely alone! Joy is a relationship. It is togetherness. In fact, even those people who have moved to the mountains and have lived an alone life, they also share with existence – not alone. They share with the stars and the mountains and the birds and the trees – they are not alone.
For twelve years Lord Mahavir was standing in the jungles alone – but he was not alone. The birds were coming and playing around, the animals would come and sit around, the trees would shower their flowers on him, the stars would come and the sun would rise. The day and the night, the summers and winters the whole year around; it was joy! Yes, he was away from human beings.. He had to be, because human beings had done so much damage to him that he needed to be away from them so that he could be healed. It was just to avoid human beings for a certain period so they didn’t go on damaging him.
For all those years Lord Mahavir was silent – standing, sitting, with the rocks and the trees, but he was not alone – he was crowded by the whole existence. The whole existence was merging upon him. Then the day came when he was healed, his wounds cured, and now he knew nobody could harm him. He had gone beyond. No human being could hurt him anymore. He came back to relate to human beings, to SHARE the joy that he had attained there.
Lord Buddha went into the forest, but he came back. How can you go on being there when you HAVE it? You will have to come back and share it. They HAD to come back! to the world, to human beings, to share their joy, their bliss, their ecstasy.
‘Charity’ is not a good word. It is a very loaded word. In the word ‘charity’ there is some ugliness also: it seems that you are having the upper hand and the other is lower than you, that the other is a beggar; that you are helping the other, that he is in need. That is not good. To look at the other as if he is lower than you — you have and he has not — is not good; it is inhuman.
Sharing gives a totally different perspective. It is not a question of whether the other has it or not. The question is that you have got it too much – you have to share. When you give charity, you expect the other to thank you. When you share, you thank him that he allowed you to pour your energy – which was getting too much upon you, it was getting heavy. You feel grateful.
Sharing is out of your abundance.
Charity is for others’ poverty, Sharing is out of your richness. There is a qualitative difference.
So, its not about charity, but sharing.
Share! Whatsoever you have, share… and it will grow. That is a fundamental law: the more you give, the more you get. Never be a miser in giving.