Saturday, June 16, 2007

Giving to charity

Why people give to a charity, an interesting study though it's done on a small and uniform sample group :-

Can't buy me Altruism

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3 Comments:

Blogger VeganCatsg said...

In Buddhism, this is called "Appreciative Joy"
The third immeasurable is appreciative joy. It is the wholesome attitude of rejoicing in the happiness and virtues of all sentient beings. It counters jealousy and makes people less self-centred.

People in their daily lives may experience appreciative joy. It is like a mother's joy at her son's success and happiness in life. In the same way, almost everyone will have at one time or another experienced the feeling of joy at the good fortune of a friend. These are the commonly experienced forms of appreciative joy. When one meditates on appreciative joy and extends it to all sentient beings and not just to loved ones only, one then experiences appreciative joy as a sublime state of mind and as an immeasurable.

This is one of what are called Four Immeasurables, because they are directed to an immeasurable number of sentient beings, and because the wholesome karma produced through practising them is immeasurable.

16/6/07 12:33 PM  
Anonymous yskat said...

People have long known that giving feels good, so I wonder why we need medical/scientific proof? The more important thing is that what generates appreciative joy or giving varies considerably from person to person, society to society. For many people, donating to an orphanage feels good, but not giving to say, a group that works towards the emancipation of food animals. Thus, a more interesing study will be one that looks at what are some of the social/cultural forces that define for us the meaning of a "good deed".

18/6/07 10:44 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

yskat - a good point. I suppose that there is a school of thought that people have to get something 'tangible' out of giving and that economically speaking, these people aren't behaving 'rationally'. What was interesting though to me was that people who had seen money being given were more likely to give money themselves.

As for your point on what constitutes a good deed, I'll be writing in a bit about the guy who keeps writing in to complain about people feeding cats being misplaced kindness.

18/6/07 10:49 AM  

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