Recently, we’ve been touching on generosity. Understanding the nuances of giving and receiving, specifically with regard to our modern day, human experience, is incredibly important. We live in a largely fear-based society, terrified of not having enough. I call this the pervasive “scarcity mentality”. It’s one of the paradoxes of the Western World, in which many have so much, while others truly live in need. Discovering how to remedy this dire imbalance and injustice is essential for the health of our communities. In this installation of the generosity articles, I’d like to look at why so many feel like there’s not enough to share.
Dana is the Pali word for generosity, and, in Celtic mythology, Dana is the Mother Goddess. This goddess is associated with power, generosity and knowledge. The Gaelic word “dána”, means “brave and daring”. It is interesting to consider how generosity relates to our interpretation of braveness.
When there’s a sense of limited resources, we consume in excess. We stockpile or hoard. Often there IS enough … It is our mind that is conditioned to feel a sense of lack. This is one of the core beliefs that limits our ability to give freely and without regret. Trust is our medicine here. Once we learn to trust, it gets easier. When we trust that life will unfold as intended, and, ultimately, that we will be taken care of, in the ways that we need, things come together. Dana transitions from an abstract idea/concept, to a diligent practice. When we trust that we have enough, we have the space to give more.
Trust isn’t everyone’s default setting, so we must be brave enough to break free of our fears … fears of not having enough to give. When we learn to undo some of the old knots in our conditioning, living in alignment with these principles becomes easier. So, the next time you see someone in need of a smile, or a hug, or a few moments of listening … possibly help of some other kind … pause and remember that life is rich. There are enough riches for everyone. We just need to have the courage to share it !!