Sunday, January 4, 2009

We Have to Learn to Give

We Have to Learn to Give

By Brian Lynch M.D.

Whenever I write I wish not to be “pointing the finger at others” although it is natural to first see “wrong” in others  but very often I will write something and then be so surprised to be thinking about what I wrote and find that I remember doing a similar thing to someone just recently.

Today I am thinking about stories I have heard and experiences I have heard concerning people that just seem to be unable to, well, share very much.

In the extreme form it might be that you could not expect them to walk across the room and get you a glass of water.

People who might live with you a week and maybe, just maybe wash their dish that they ate from. Otherwise they feel that they need every last cent that have as “who knows what might happen tomorrow?”

People who know all about a given profession, are professional and yet after 20 years and claim you as their “best” friend but I bet you, you have not gotten one bit of “free” advice from them. You might be “picking their brain!" Yet you have freely given of your knowledge as you see this as part and parcel of “friendship”, of sharing.

Over and over you hear, “I’d love to help you out” with this or that. I know how to do this or that. “You really should get this organized.” etc., but nothing ever comes of it.

A relative is full of advice. You’re desperate for tuition money but you just hear criticism. Had you done this or that? They are going to give all their savings to the poor in India when they die. That is the only solution they can see. “Otherwise people just hurt you?”

So why are “we” like this so much of the time? Well, the last statement says it all. “Otherwise people just hurt you?” If we are not creating the good times now, today. Why is it that we are not creating the good times now today? It must only be because we have learned to be cautious. A little logic must tell us that there should be a balance to this but then who is to tell us what that balance is? Where do we go to find out?

If we have been severely abused how do we even know we have been severely abused and we are over reacting? How do we know that we should be more giving and if we were more giving we would be better off? The thought is those that don’t know don’t know and are not “evil”, “mean” or “doing it on purpose” they just do not know. Those that can give in the moment and experience the “interest” and the resulting “joy” of giving and hopefully of receiving only know it through doing. The receiving part is very important because the down side is that is almost as dangerous and “sick” to give and give without receiving as to not give. We need balance the year round.

Copyright 2008


Tomkins, Silvan S.: Affect Imagery Consciousness NY: SPringer Publishing Company, 1963.

Shame and Pride : Affect, Sex, and the Birth of the Self by Donald L. Nathanson Paperback (March 1994)

W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN: 0393311090

How To Get Where You Want To Go Brian Lynch, M.D. 2000 PageFree