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When we see a person in need, we may want to give them something as a way of helping them, but if we give without taking the time to see who they really are, honoring that most of all, our gift is nowhere near as powerful as it could be. We may want to give a homeless person a sandwich, for example, but if we give it without also taking a moment to look the person in the eye, making authentic contact, we rob them of the experience of being human.
Being in a position of need leaves a lot of people feeling vulnerable and full of self-doubt. The greatest gift we can give is to meet people in need without judgment and with the awareness that we are not superior to them simply because we are not currently in their position. If we take the long view, we can see that we all began life in need of a lot of care and attention, and many of us end life in the same way. Giving and receiving are companion energies that take turns throughout our lives, and we all get a chance to be on both sides of the exchange from time to time.
It’s important to be aware of our own tendency to give from a desire to feel good about ourselves, rather than from an acknowledgement of our connection to all people. Letting go of our self-importance allows us to see that, regardless of appearances, we are all givers and receivers. When we are in the position of the giver, we honor those we are helping when we remember the many people who have helped us. Then we can look the person we are helping in the eye, aware that we are making contact with a human being who is our equal.
DISCOVER HAITI with Hands of Humanity
Hands of Humanity is a 501(c)3 U.S. Federal Nonprofit Corporation. Our mission is to connect Hands Of Humanity travelers with people of our destination countries in meaningful "one on one" interaction. We encourage people to travel and work with us on our projects. The hope is that exposure to the developing world will enlighten them to the world outside their own and inspire them to continue humanitarian service in their lives. Past travelers have had life-changing human experiences and an opportunity to change people's lives FOREVER. You may find that the life you change may be your own!
- Constantine Mavraganis
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