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RPGWatch Forums » General Forums » Politics, Religion & other Controversies » Why is it so hard for some people to give?

Default Why is it so hard for some people to give?

September 18th, 2013, 12:54


If 1 person gave to 5 people and each one of those people gave to another 5 people, the world would be a better place. One of the things i remember is the kid who had a limp who asked me for a dollar, i only had 20 dollar notes so i refused. I should have given the kid the 20 dollar note. Still feel bad about it after all these years. I dunno if it is religion or not so i posted this here.
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September 18th, 2013, 13:09
It is human nature and one's beliefs.

When giving there is always an internal (selfish) voice that reminds you that you have bills to pay, your children to feed, your entertainment needs .. etc. Some people can resist this voice and give for their good souls, selflessness and because of their upbringing.

If one is religious, then this provides the ultimate motivation to give as an investment or gaining rewards for their own good (in the form of success and happiness in life and in the hereafter) and for the good of the others (bringing joy and good to others, which again you get additional reward for - if you belive that).
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September 18th, 2013, 13:21
Originally Posted by SpoonFULL View Post
Makes sense. As i get more "religious" I find that I want to give more despite the cost to myself. Though it isnt really because I would get into heaven, but because my religion tells me that it is the right thing to do.
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September 18th, 2013, 13:21
Spoonfull put it in perspective. Most think of their needs above others. I'm guilty of this sometimes myself. I'm not perfect just a simple flawed human. I see it as a flaw of being human we dont always do what is right.

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September 18th, 2013, 13:28
I think it becomes easier when we see things like the youtube mini movie i posted. I think as human beings it is hard for us to see the future and the results of our actions. Hence why religion can be an effective tool to make people give. The end result is explicitly guaranteed in most religions if we do good.

I mean when we give without religion it is not guaranteed a good result. So it is harder to give.
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September 18th, 2013, 16:57
Originally Posted by SpoonFULL View Post
If one is religious, then this provides the ultimate motivation to give as an investment or gaining rewards for their own good (in the form of success and happiness in life and in the hereafter) and for the good of the others (bringing joy and good to others, which again you get additional reward for - if you belive that).
Unless your religion is based on Calvin's interpretation of Bible. In this case giving to the less fortunate is acting against the will of God.

Faith is not a necessary pre-requirement to giving. Compassion and empathy is.
Last edited by zahratustra; September 18th, 2013 at 17:07.
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September 18th, 2013, 17:11
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Faith is not a necessary pre-requirement to giving. Compassion and empathy is.
I think we all have that. It is the next step that becomes the issue. It is really about a little sacrifice if you think about it. About how much you value yourself over someone else.
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September 18th, 2013, 17:39
Originally Posted by Damian View Post
I think we all have that.
You do?
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September 18th, 2013, 18:35
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Faith is not a necessary pre-requirement to giving. Compassion and empathy is.
Yes, but not many people have compassion and empathy either by nature or circumstance, and faith is needed to soften the hearts and give motivation (reward).
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September 18th, 2013, 19:02
The real answer = Because people suck.

Ok, that's a bit over the top, but I've done fund raising for years for various charities and as much as it is enjoyable to see the completion of a campaign, its pretty disheartening to see people not give. The worst is when they sit there and buy into your message, but when it gets time to ask for money, all of the sudden they can't do it. Its maddening to ask for a $10 or $25 donation and be told the person can't afford it while they carry the new iPhone and have the latest clothes, eat out all the time, etc.

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September 18th, 2013, 19:20
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
You do?
I really do. I mean sure there is the odd ball that is a sociopath. But most people are moved when shown the plight of others i believe. Oh sure they try and use every excuse not to show empathy and compassion but they know and they will feel bad.


Blatantninja: Was your charity one of those that try and make you pay a monthly contribution? I can never get myself to join one of those. I'd much rather pay a one off lump sum than have to continuously pay a fee. Easier still for me is when i see a bum on the street asking for money. I know it would most likely be used to buy booze but on the off chance it wont it is worth it imo.
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September 18th, 2013, 19:33
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Unless your religion is based on Calvin's interpretation of Bible. In this case giving to the less fortunate is acting against the will of God.

Faith is not a necessary pre-requirement to giving. Compassion and empathy is.
I've heard the same argument against Karma, that helping someone in need only hurts them because their punishment for some misdeed in a past life is not being fulfilled.

Under Calvinism, in my understanding, those who are "the Elect" do good works. Its this hard working industriousness that Calvinists prove to themselves at the back of their mind that they are predestined for heaven that lead to what Max Weber called the "Protestant Work Ethic".

Remember the scene in Lawrence of Arabia where Lawrence saves from the desert only to have that man kill another in a clan feud? Lawrence shouldn't have saved that man because "it was written". ie. it was kismet.

To be devils advocate here, there's a lot of charities out there that operate pretty questionably. One church that hangs outside of grocery stores where I live have all their members wear white for the purpose of helping "homeless children". "Homeless Children" is actually a euphemism for church member.

I think its good to be careful. Some of the TV charities that run infomercials have been caught in the past of taking of 90% for operating expenses and just giving a bar of soap and a blanket once a year to those they say they are helping.

For the record I tithe 10% of my income to my church. That was a hard decision for me to start 20 years ago but I rarely think twice about it now - except when finances get stretched, and then it definitely becomes an act of faith .

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September 18th, 2013, 20:30
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
The real answer = Because people suck.

Ok, that's a bit over the top, but I've done fund raising for years for various charities and as much as it is enjoyable to see the completion of a campaign, its pretty disheartening to see people not give. The worst is when they sit there and buy into your message, but when it gets time to ask for money, all of the sudden they can't do it. Its maddening to ask for a $10 or $25 donation and be told the person can't afford it while they carry the new iPhone and have the latest clothes, eat out all the time, etc.
I generally agree.
But we should not forget greed. Many will try to abuse the good nature of other people.
Fake organizations, fake charities and fake campaigns just for the profit of the few.
Many are cautious.
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September 18th, 2013, 22:11
True, but for the work I do (mainly with my alumni group raising funds for our scholarships), they are already familiar with the charity in question. Its not like they are some random person I've approached.

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September 18th, 2013, 22:46
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
True, but for the work I do (mainly with my alumni group raising funds for our scholarships), they are already familiar with the charity in question. Its not like they are some random person I've approached.
I'm sure. My comment was a general one
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September 18th, 2013, 23:32
It's almost sickening to see people write that it is selfish to give to a total stranger rather than feeding your own kids. It's hard to believe that society actually makes some of you feel guilty for taking care of yourself above of taking care of others. I cannot fathom a bigger dystopian.

In my opinion you start with yourself, then your family, then your friends, then your neighbors. If you can and want (because it should never be a requirement), then you begin looking beyond that. Giving just for givings purpose holds very little weight otherwise.
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September 19th, 2013, 00:20
Its a failure of society when people have to resort to begging money. Such shouldn't be left to chance. Its a game of pride where people giving money can feel good about themselves while those receiving willingly (or unwillingly) degrade themselves. I think most of us would never allow ourself to be put in such a position.
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September 19th, 2013, 02:13
BN, one of the reasons people don't 'give' to 'your' charity is that they may already be giving to others. Here and I assume there, we have MANY asking for money and sometimes other things and people only have so much to give. I believe in giving, after all, the Bible says it is more blessed to give than to receive, but I can't give to everything, so some collectors are going to be disappointed. I NEVER give to 'marketed' charities since anything up to 90% in some cases goes to the marketer. I'd much rather give where I know 100% will be going to meet a need.

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September 19th, 2013, 02:20
Originally Posted by rossrjensen View Post
It's almost sickening to see people write that it is selfish to give to a total stranger rather than feeding your own kids. It's hard to believe that society actually makes some of you feel guilty for taking care of yourself above of taking care of others. I cannot fathom a bigger dystopian.

In my opinion you start with yourself, then your family, then your friends, then your neighbors. If you can and want (because it should never be a requirement), then you begin looking beyond that. Giving just for givings purpose holds very little weight otherwise.
Well said and the order of priority is spot on, and this is always implied since charity is only for those that deserve it (one is never required to give charity if they or their family is in need).
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October 1st, 2013, 13:04
I've never had much trouble giving - but I've also never felt a responsibility to give. I don't think responsibility should have anything to do with giving.

But it makes sense to me that we should help out when we can - and when we feel certain that help is meaningful. Not because it's our responsibility - but because it's better for the whole when we're all helping.

It's a pragmatic position for me, not a sympathetic or "angelic" one.

However, I don't think giving money is the ideal way of helping out. Money is only as beneficial as what you do with it - and counting on money being used for the best purpose is not something I've been able to feel certain of very often.
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