Blog Posts: Heart Test
The Rebirth of Generosity: A response to Leon Neyfakh's Boston Globe article "Why We Give to Charity"
When people think more, they are less generous. How do you feel about that? Leon Neyfakh promotes this hypothesis in his new Boston Globe article "Why We Give to Charity." Nonprofit service organizations like Law For Change and Campbell & Company have posted the provocative article for website visitors to read. It has been swirling around philanthropy-related twitter feeds for all to see. I bumped into it on a daily news blast from the Chronicle of Philanthropy. I loved its trend-bucking subversion. But I found its case truly unconvincing. So much so, I'm firing back with some neglected facts in the oversimplified case.
Generous giving might be a sign of a selfless heart. Jesus once said, “Where you put your money is the same place you’ll find your heart.” It makes sense. If all my money goes to fund youth mentoring programs in downtown, I may have a selfless heart. The same could be said if I sponsored a Chilean child, funded a rural clinic in Cambodia, and significantly contributed to HIV/AIDS reduction in Zambia.
Giving does say something about my (metaphorical) heart. However, the story better not start and end as a tale all about me.