Philanthropy Vs. Service

Feb 28, 2012

I got a kind note today that pointed to a significant difference between being a philanthropist (donating money) and a volunteer (giving time): "Dear Nipun, I was inspired by the story of your walking pilgrimage in India as well as your dedication to volunteering. I have been caught in a dilemma because our society upholds the notion that we need money to live, but I have found no happiness in this. Through the pursuit of making a living I find I am not living at all. I have asked myself if it is in fact possible to do what I love, which is serving humankind, and still be able to have food and shelter? You have warmed my heart with the truth that it is possible. And for this I would like to thank you. Much Love, Corey"  While both philanthropy and service are rooted in generosity, only one of them has properties that can apply to all; that is, we cannot have a world where everyone is a philanthropist but we can have a world where everyone approaches their actions with a heart of service.

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"Service doesn't start when you have something to give; it blossoms naturally when you have nothing left to take."

"Real privilege lies in knowing that you have enough."