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Personal growth: Developing the spirit of generosity May 11, 2014

Posted by Dennis Mellersh in Concept of personal development, Tao Te Ching.
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One of the precepts that we soon come across in a serious study of personal growth and development is what we might call an attitudinal + action version of the Law of Reciprocation.

In the case of bringing the concept of generosity into our self-improvement program, the law is straightforward: give and you will receive.

As we increase our self-awareness, and our knowledge of the principles of personal growth as it applies to our attitudes, emotions, and behaviour patterns, we discover how generosity can benefit us in many ways; in addition to helping the recipients of our generosity.

Although the true spirit of generosity requires that our actions be done without expectation of reward, nevertheless we gain as much, and possibly more, than those we are generous towards.

We can be generous with our time, our resources, our knowledge and skills, our understanding, our acceptance, and more.

The ancient Chinese wisdom writer Lao Tzu stated the concept concisely in this excerpt from chapter 81 of the Tao Te Ching:

A sage never hoards:
the more you do for others,
the more plenty is yours,
and the more you give to others,
the more abundance is yours. (1)

(1) Lao Tzu, the Tao Te Ching, as translated by David Hinton in his book, The Four Chinese Classics