| ||why the pressure to tithe?|
In many religions, there is a concept called, "tithing" where you are mandated of your own good graces to give a percentage of everything you earn to your group. This has baffled me for years, and here is why:
I do very much understand the concept of abundance and using your good fortune and abundance to assist those in need. When I donate, I give the same amount of due diligence in the charitable organization as I would in making an investing decision. I look up their administrative load, their percent of dollars that go directly to aid, etc. I am this way because I gave a generous donation to the Red Cross right after 9/11, and of course the big controversy erupted that made me feel like an idiot. From that point on, I knew that my hard-earned dollars were going to go to hard-working charities.
Having said that, donating is a private act. I firmly believe this. It is very personal, and this is why so many large donations are given by "anonymous donors". When/how/"IF" you donate is NOBODY'S BUSINESS. I am not going to look at you weird if you do not donate to charities, you are going through your own thing right now. I don't want to know what you do with your donations. If you do give, I won't go, "good, you should". If you don't, I won't think what the hell is wrong with you, you greedy bastard. It's your decision. I do not care what you do with your dick. I do not care what you do with your vagina. I do not care what you do with your stem cell. You are learning/discovering/discerning on a path to greater poise, distinction and clarity. So am I, and so is the person next to you.
It doesn't matter to me how you worship. Do you pray to allah? Dig it. Are you hasidic jewish? That's neat! Follow Scientology? Not for me, but if you are happy then so am I. Are you a Mormon? Nephi led the tribe!
You are going through your own path of discovery. So why do people in a group/organization/congregation pressure their pew neighbor to tithe? That's MEAN. That person may have a hard time feeding their family. They may have difficulties that you know nothing about. And yet, there is that pressure to "Look" as the basket goes around to "see" if you were "good" and gave.
Donations should be of personal conviction, and completely anonymous. ABSOLUTELY. I know so many people who really REALLY are in financial straights right now who wouldn't be if they had put their 10% into conservative investments over say a decade or two, and would've been quite wealthy but instead are having difficulties. My opinion is that if donations were anonymous, then honestly - the rich people would more than make up for those who are struggling. Rich people can write a single check that is more than some families make in a year.
Then there is that pitch that whatever you give, you get ten times in return. Look around you. Look at your own experiences. Is that true? If not, can you formulate a reason? Of course you can! So can I (abundance is not measured in dollars, etc)
But I've seen some groups absolutely pound massive guilt and fear and even embarassment to fellow members to "give until it hurts". Again, it is none of anybody's business what people do with their donations - and therein lies the paradox. I believe that donations should be anonymous - and this would prevent people from getting in too deep with their tithing. Yet having said that, whatever you want to do with your money is completely up to you. If you want to have financial hardship from tithing past a common-sense point, that's your choice.
Consider this; when the person at the podium is pounding on and on about how you should give and give - consider that this person wants your money. Is that not true? Don't say, "no, he is asking for God" that's not my question. My question is this - does the person at the podium want YOU to transfer your money to that person - as in - will that person provide a receptacle to receive funds from you directly? Will this person receive the funds? Does this person benefit in any way (lifestyle-wise) from you doing this? Honest answers appreciated.
| ||Posted 5/2/2008 11:11 PM - 3176 Views - 44 eProps - 33 comments|
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