(aka Charity ....... or Voluntary Action for the Public Good)
I am not rich. But fortunately, I do feel wealthy. And while one of my goals is to consistently grow this feeling of wealth, I am now choosing to adopt the practice of giving!
Because I'm from the school of thought that it's better to teach a man to fish rather than give him a fish, I have inherently not believed in charity. However our Planet stands at a precipice and I'm more than convinced that we need to take sustainable ownership for and responsibility of our Planet.
Therefore, I am signing my own version of a Giving Pledge (it's not just for Billionaires! :)) and beginning by channelling 2% of my post-tax soldiers every month into an area of common concern. And in my own budgeting I'm categorizing this not as an expense, but a non-negotiable investment -- a voluntary action for the public good ..... over and above a stupidly exorbitant tax incidence (yay Finance Ministry!).
There's tons of worthy causes, but right now I'm extremely concerned about the Future of Water. Therefore for the foreseeable future I'm directing my piddly monthly contribution in an equal split between charity : water and WaterAid India.
I don't know how impactful the extent of this giving will be. And the goal is not (purely) to make me feel good or earn good Karma :)
Instead, the larger goal is to:
Give > Take : set the ball rolling and consistently make a small contribution toward becoming a less tax-evasive, and a more pro-giving society.
Produce > = Consume : encourage and empower people to be able to produce more (or equal) to what we consume.