Giving is an act of pleasure and we all feel wonderful when we give to our children, our friends, our parents, strangers and all those around us. I feel fantastic when I think I have done something wonderful for someone. Riding high on this generous wave I bought gifts for everyone during the Diwali festival. The elated feeling lasted the whole day.
Keeping in tune with the festival wave, I also spent the whole evening decorating the house and preparing things for the visitors that ‘may’ drop in. In the process I missed the firecrcaker show that I was going to go with the kids. The bubble burst the next day, when my little one remarked that the gift was fantastic but he would rather have gone out to watch firecracker show and light up the crackers with me.
That’s when I wondered that do we really give? How many times do we pause and think when we decide to do something for someone or give something to someone?
Does the someone really want what we generously hand out, or is the giving just another way to massage our ego and feed the belief about how ‘kind’ or ‘generous’ we are. That’s when I realized that there are a number of things I do in a day – things that make me feel that I am a great mom, a great boss, a great wife, a super friend and so on. All about my perception on what I am doing for the wonderful people in my life.
Maybe the hour spent in watching the firecracker show was a better act of giving then the thirty minutes spent in finding the perfect gift. But it definitely was the tougher choice. Giving goes hand in glove with receiving. Giving without the pleasure of receiving is not giving. Giving just because someone insists on wanting something is not giving. Giving with the thought that what you give will make a difference to the ‘someone’ – not a difference to you or those around the person is the act of giving – as what is given is received and the act of giving is completed.
Sometimes we give our time, do things for the people we love, as that is our way of showing that we care about them. If I could pause for a split second before I carry out a random act of kindness, I would realize that the act may not be that kind to me or even kind for the person it is being done for. Just for that moment I realize that when there is as much joy in giving as in receiving ‘giving’ becomes the generous act that is.
~ Sabinder Singh