What is the Nature of a True Gift? Thought-provoking Conversations on It’s A Question of Balance with Ruth Copland
As the holidays approach our minds turn to gifts. British essayist, novelist and poet Robert Louis Stevenson observed “To be rich in admiration and free from envy, to rejoice greatly in the good of others, to love with such generosity of heart that your love is still a dear possession in absence or unkindness - these are the gifts which money cannot buy.” Ruth Copland features her Out and About show on ‘What is the nature of a true gift?’
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Do we still think of things like this as gifts? Or has the march of consumerism made us view gifts as predominantly material items? Giving gifts can be as much a joy for the giver as for the receiver but has gift-giving become a barter exchange where we try to give gifts of equal value to what we will receive? Or do we still gifts to engender joy with no expectation of a return? Maybe a good maxim is the Arabic proverb “If you have much, give of your wealth; if you have little, give of your heart.” In tribal cultures, a gift is given in the knowledge that it will keep being given and never be stagnant. Why do YOU give gifts and what is a true gift to you?
Photo Credit: Dina Scoppettone
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