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The balance of Give and Take

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posted on Dec, 17 2008 @ 11:02 PM
I had a thought while brushing my teeth and decided I would write it down, and now it seems I am posting it here.
I started off thinking about charities and its similarities to a business but it turned into a broader thing, as these
things usually go when i start thinking.

Anyways, heres my random thought for you. If anyone has a better insight into how these 2 systems work, please add a statement to this. I'm just going from what I percieve.

A charity is like a business. The similarities are clear. The only thing that really seperates them is the fact that one puts personal gain before the gain of others versus the other way around. To argue however, the gain
of others can also be one's personal spiritual gain. It gives them a sense of purpose.

Both systems work ultimately for the betterment of society, at least on the surface. Ethics come in to play here.

A charity needs funding to get off the ground, as does a business. A charity needs an organized staff, much like a business.

To repeat myself, business's are created with one's personal gain as the goal. The fact that it benefits others is more of an afterthought it would seem - or rather that naturally for a business to be financially successful, it has to be of the most benefit to others, or at least beneficial to the wealthy few.

A charity is based on the gain of others as the goal, with personal gain as the afterthought. To be able to devote one's time organizing a large
charity, while still existing in the current system, it becomes a job. - they get paid.

Now i'm not saying working in / running a business isn't as personally rewarding as running a charity, infact I'm saying they are almost exactly the same. The only difference is one's perception of personal gain. One would look to material abundance as being gainful to their existence, while another would look to something more philosophical. That being said, success depends on the individual's interpretation. The poorest can indeed be the wealthiest and vice versa.

Both systems work to better society, and both systems can also be corrupted we can also assume. It seems it really comes down to the ever flexible human sense of fairness, the balance of give and take.

I think overall my point is, why are they two separate things? I guess what separates them is really a matter of give and take.

I think i'm just ranting about the absurdities on our planet and an underlying spiritual nature to it all.

I think if our sense of fairness ceased to be so flexible or at least negotiated to a stable balance, then my friends... well then it seems we're now living in a utopia.

It's hard to please everyone, we all have different goals in life. I think this re-assures my belief that wisdom facilitates balance - on a personal,
global, and no doubt universal level. You could also say wisdom comes from the balance. They are related either way.

So lets all get wise.

posted on Dec, 19 2008 @ 09:09 AM
Combining your two thoughts bring about a great result; a For Profit business that supports humanitarian goals. This is what i am heavily involved in.
For example a For Profit Hospital we are building here in China. It has late model equipment ( less than 3 years old), over 800 staff, etc. It is run for profit.
However the Govt provides low income individuals with identification so they recieve free or extreme low cost medical treatment and pharmacueticals. This is the best of both worlds, an organization that operates with the goal of treating low income individuals but is supported by those that can pay.
We are applying this to several other ventures; technical schools, language schools, etc.

posted on Dec, 19 2008 @ 09:37 AM
I liked your insight

although I was concerned what the balance of take was? I guess I am thinking more on the lines of "give and receive".

I think charities are very selfless in regards of what they receive, there are no unacceptable ways to accept gratitude. Businesses can be looked at from the with the self-concerned gain of the business itself, But I think there can be businesses that operate very much like a charity, as long as the it works in the same respect i.e. the willing gratitude of the client is affects the growth of the business, so as a CEO your very goal is gain from your client - the action of prosperity in the business is the reaction of gain from the client. - but honestly imo, when profit gets wrapped up in the scenario, greed almost wins every time

nice thread

posted on Dec, 19 2008 @ 10:06 AM
It is difficult to manage these types of organizations, but with the right people in charge and top to bottom auditing every 6 months, the organizations run ok...your right about the greed factor though, people feel entitled to larger slices as time goes on.

The problem i have found is straight charity is very difficult to keep in business...most of the time is spent raising funds, which must include pay to the fund raisers, and then its gets into the same situation, people want larger slices of the funds...

We have 2 Hospitals completed, a third under construction, and a School teaching Computer Science. They work well, but require constant supervision and auditing. Its not perfect, but it works and we have helped many thousands of people.

We are planning a Cancer research center here next, with supper from French and German companies and resources. Cancer will pass heart desease as the worlds #1 killer in about 8-10 years, it is a tragedy building momentum.

posted on Dec, 21 2008 @ 07:29 PM
hey thanks for replying guys, i haven't been online all week. I'm glad someone gets where I'm comming from.

The more i've started to look into charities the more I've started to think about these things. I've never had a problem with businesses either until I think they are really screwin people over. But again it comes down to an individual's sense of fairness.. but there is trying to find a good balance and there is selfishly screwing with said clients/ customers.

There are a few companies that I think have good integrity trying to make everyone benefit and I'm glad they are around.

I guess another way that seperates a business from a charity is usually in a business you get some sort of product or service for your money, whereas in a charity, your essentially paying for that product or service to get to others.. or like how you might support a charity that plants trees. You don't own the tree, but you want it to be around.

I guess whatever makes the individual happy.

posted on Dec, 21 2008 @ 07:51 PM
Let me share a memory from when I worked at Hancock's, the fabric stor, I don't know if you have that up there.

THey had partnered with the St. Jude's children's hospital in order to fund medical research.

St. Jude sponsered certain fabrics and products that were sold at Hancocks. All of the profits went to the hospital.

Every year St. Judes would sponser a contest in which people made quilts with those fabrics, which were then donated to the hospital.

I also run a very small business making dog sweaters. One thing I am doing to market that is giving free sweaters to rescue groups. In addition to helping needy pets I get very good advertising and customers that way.

It would be great to see very large businesses making a policy of finding some way to help the poor or needy with their policies. For instance their is a thrift store here in town that gets bread donated to them every Saturday by the local Panera's. The store gives it away for free but asks people to make a donation to the women's shelter that funds the store. It's a nice arrangement that I would liek to see more of.

I think people take for granted that you can't give without taking, though. LIke it's impossible to give to a charity and see 100% of your dollar actually go to the poor.

[edit on 21-12-2008 by asmeone2]

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