When one thinks of the word share, these days it is often associated with a button on social media which is activated to validate arbitrary content on a page we scroll through.
I am the kind of person who likes to give. I share my time, possessions, and advice as often as I can to help others. Some may think that I am boasting in saying this but the way I see it is that I’m promoting virtues that are personally valuable, and also necessary in the world today: generosity and kindness. In an age when it is fashionable to share content one finds valuable, I choose to share acts of kindness.
“Be the change that you want to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi
I am not the type to share things on social media because of the associated hype; I share media which resonates with my values, and the most precious memories in my life. I am an advocate of peace and love and in our consumer-driven world I don’t see enough of these virtues advertised.
The other day I heard a fellow student in my postgraduate course comment that “people who post that they’re giving blood on social media are doing it for the wrong reason!” I had to politely disagree with this as there is only one reason I am an active blood donor and it is because I believe in the cause. My blood type is also in demand therefore I give. I have no problem posting about this on social media either because I would love to encourage more people to donate blood if they are able. I would rather post this than reshare dog videos (as beautiful as they are). I would love to see more people donate anything if they have the means.
Yes, that seems philanthropic but is it the same as being boastful? Is advocating boasting? Am I doing it for the wrong reason? I, personally, don’t post content on Facebook based on how many potential likes it is likely to attract. I share content that I feel could benefit society. So, I will continue to post about blood donations, donating to charities, and generally any posts which will hopefully inspire kindness in others.
If anyone thinks I’m doing it for the wrong reasons then they are free to pass judgement. The worst that could happen is that someone could actually benefit from my kindness, and that is a consequence that I can live with.
Yesterday, my mother-in-law benefited from a skill I was happy to offer. I like to declutter. She was overwhelmed by the thought of returning to school, having had to move classrooms last year. She knew a lot of boxes of resources were waiting for her and I could sense her stress. After 3 hours of solid work in her classroom/office we came up with a system, and order was restored. All it took me was a few hours of time and effort and she was happier for that. What’s more valuable is that I got to bond with my mother-in-law and family is very important to me.
Kindness and generosity are easy if one is willing. What skills do you have and are willing to share to benefit someone else? Most of all, are you willing to do this for no foreseeable personal reward?
Living in a more loving, selfless world starts with what we are prepared to contribute. I choose to be proactive in generosity and love, I trust that I am not alone in this quest.
We often ask why God allows tragic things to happen in the world. In particular, the tragedies we see in the world news of recent times. I agree with Richard Leonard in his sentiment:
“God is not responsible because we refuse to make the hard choices that would see our world transformed into a more just and equal place for everyone. We will not act as one family under God.
In the face of this obstinacy, it is not surprising that we find a divine scapegoat to carry the guilt for our lack of political will and social solidarity. Thus we have made the world…thus have I made it”