The Darker Side of Generosity

When we give ourself away

I thought I understood the significance but this morning I realised I had missed the point.

Two disks that I had designed during a mediation in a workshop around fifteen years ago. The disks had been engraved by a jeweler and contained the three master numbers 11, 22 and 33 which came to me as a symbol ‘to move beyond all limitation’. At the time that was exactly what I needed and I was excited to design and create these two gold disks. One for my husband and one for me. That was 15 years ago.

And after my husband died, I slipped my little disk onto the chain that was his and I wore the two together. It hung around my neck for 4 years.

Last week whilst visiting a friend her son came and sat down with us and noticed my necklace and asked me about it. After telling him what the image meant to me, he said he needed something like that and could he use the image. It was a moment I stopped, took a split second to think, and ignoring the moment, I said sure. No one had ever asked me if they could use that symbol and I just went with an almost automatic , ‘Yes’.

Why am I telling you this story? Because two days later the chain and the disks were gone. At first I thought maybe I don’t need it anymore. After all, I am doing what I want in my life and nothing really stops me from creating the life I love. Maybe the energy of this symbol has moved to another person and that’s perfect.

What happened is significant but not in the way I initially thought. I was given a moment in time. This was a sacred piece for me. I had created it for me and loved wearing it.  I had been given this symbol for me and I underestimated the significance of that. I could have  suggested to this young man that maybe he can go into meditation and create a symbol that comes to him from his own soul rather than blithely giving away the gift I was given.

Listening to our intuition is not like listening to a podcast or a story. It comes in a flash. A feeling. A split second. Sometimes we need to take our time to feel and listen and understand it, we need to carefully consider our response. Rather than saying, ‘sure’, ‘of course’, I could have said, “ let me think about that for a moment.”

Did I lose my  necklace as a lesson? No. I don’t think so. It fell off somewhere and someone will pick it up and probably keep it . Will it work for them as it has for me? I have no idea, but I do know this. As beautiful as it is to give things away, to pay that bill, to share your precious books, to be known as ‘the generous one’,  it is also equally important to consider why we are giving things away and why we need to be  so generous.

There is a time to give, a time to teach, and a time to let go.

We also need to take our time to consider  the best course of action in any moment.

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