I have been rereading parts of one of my favorite books, by Arnold Patient, called “You can have it all” and I loved some of his thoughts in his chapter on giving and receiving.
One concept he talks about is what “true” giving is. He offers that true giving follows these 3 criteria:
- The giver sincerely wishes for the recipient to have and to enjoy the gift.
- The gift is something the giver sincerely believes the receiver wishes to have.
- There are no ulterior motives or strings attached by the giver, and the recipient is free to do with the gift as she or he wishes.
This is so simple and at the same time we all can find a giving/receiving exchange we have been in that is missing a point or two. Any of you give something but expect a certain response from the receiver? That’s an ulterior motive, right? Expect NOTHING in return; not even a thank you? Wow, that might take some practice. How do you feel when you’re nice and let a car into your lane ahead of you and you don’t receive a wave or nod back? Do you give a compliment to someone you think is “cool” or “important” and it’s not quite genuine or you can find an ulterior motive why you gave it? Yes, there are lot’s of ways giving and receiving comes into everyday life, not just traditional gift giving.
Any of you feel obligated to give a gift to a certain person or at a certain time? You aren’t sincerely giving, right? If you’re obligated, what is the energy of the gift like? Positive? Likely not and likely neutral at best. Some say that when the conditions above are not met, the giving and receiving energy in us is kinda “stuck” and not free. What do I mean free? Well, I view this as when I have a practice that meets the above criteria I am creating energy in the movement of giving and receiving. Mr. Patient says this energy is really love, when you get down to the core. I’d have to think about that a bit more, however sounds good to me right now. I believe, whatever the energy that is created will attract more of that same energy. If it’s positive, you attract more of that positive energy around giving and/or receiving gifts. Maybe you end up getting more gifts in some way. Money comes unexpectedly, a compliment comes or just a smile at the checkout isle. Again, no fair giving just to receive later. Ulterior motives, right?
How about this one? Anyone receive a gift and feel you have to keep or use it? Will you stick a gift from mom in the closet and bring it out for display when she comes over? I bet you see now that while your trying to be nice to mom and not hurt her feelings (or other stuff), that energy is NOT clean. Now, I’m not saying we say to mom, “mom that gift stinks” when she gives it to us. That to creates “negative” energy around receiving and, over time, a closet full of stuff you don’t use! A good practice is to always take “in” the gift as positive, no matter what you think of it.
Of course, most of us honestly know that all are gifts we give aren’t going to be perfect. That is, perfect, in the stuff we give. However, giving with positive intentions and that energy (love?) and the criteria above that gift of “energy” IS perfect and allows for more.