Daily Obsession: When to give, in what way?

These Daily Obsessions are like a vitamin for the soul. Take one as needed for obsessive worrying and criticizing. For English, scroll down.


“Vanuit het hart geven leidt tot grotere ontvangst. Andere soorten van geven zijn helemaal geen geven.” – De Grootmoeders door Sharon McErlane in De Grootmoeders spreken, p. 193

(commentaar enkel in het Engels vandaag)



Giving from the heart leads to receiving more. Other kinds of giving are not giving at all.” – The Grandmothers via Sharon McErlane in A Call to Power, around p. 189

For people who care about others and wish to play the role of healer or carer (personally or professionally or both), “giving” is often a confusing subject. Women especially feel the personal need and the societal expectation to be “giving”. So how can we caring people decide to stop being that therapist, that nurse, that listening ear, that selfless friend? Sometimes that is what life calls us to do.

This quote from the Grandmothers provides us with a framework for examining our “giving”. If we give from the heart, the moment of giving is the moment of receiving. If we are giving in order to receive – consciously or unconsciously! – then this so-called “giving” is either a business transaction, a manipulation, or confused in some way.

Mind you, there is nothing wrong with therapeutic business transactions – just don’t confuse that kind of a job with true giving. True giving can happen in that context (and often does, but just as often does not). Regardless, the true giving is separate from the paid therapeutic work; true giving can happen anywhere, anytime. No one has to work as a therapist, nor be the listening ear all of the time in friendships, in order to do the Grandmothers’ work.

Today, examine the ways that you “give” to others. Take a good look at how the interaction feels at the moment itself. Do you feel even better after giving than before? Or do you feel tired or “dutiful” about having given? Afterward, do you find yourself feeling any disappointments or resentments? The Grandmothers ask us to be cuttingly honest with ourselves about our own so-called giving, and to discern when we are giving and when we are doing something else and calling it giving.

I wish you a day filled with giving from the heart, because that is the best feeling that there is.


Golden Eagle Feather



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