Lesson 108: “To give and to receive are one in truth.”
We learn in the Course that it is our gift that we get to give and we also get to receive.
Both are equally satisfying when we do so with God’s Love and purpose.
Giving and receiving both are a privilege- to be fortunate enough to partake in them because we gain in both scenarios. The ego thinks that giving causes us to end up with less.
The ego is centered in lack so it makes sense that its version of giving puts us in a position of having to give up in the act of giving.
The ego thinks that we gain nothing in giving except maybe what can be made in a bargain with guilt. This means that when the ego rules our giving is always tainted with sacrifice and scarcity. The reason the ego does not want to give is because so commonly we associate our losing something in the process. This means giving will be a chore and we will be averse to it.
The Course on the other hand has an entirely different perspective.
We learn that giving and receiving are one.
That means there is no difference between them at all. It makes no sense even to compare them because they are considered exactly the same. That means we need to reshape our relationship with them. We need to relearn our old outdated ideas of what these mean. This former idea is that we are in an unfortunate position when we are giving because it then leads to our own feelings of loss. In that situation we try hard to know giving only as much as we would a stranger because we want to have none of it in its current terms.
This means we will cringe at the idea of giving and watch and count how much we give so we can even the scales down the line.
Maybe we will try to steal back some of what we gave down the line so we are not in the position of having less from our courageous act of giving.
This is terrible when we are faced with the world’s philosophy that giving is always a last option preference that we try to avoid at all costs.
The Course says there is have absolutely no difference between giving and receiving. The Course reminds us that giving is nothing but a gift and that is why it can be equated with receiving. In the world people look forward to receiving because we can count our treasures and look on them with admiration. But when we look from this world’s perspective then we will always be worried about losing in the equation. The world defines giving as this act that will drain us from our inner resources. No matter what it is we give, we will still find ourselves in the unfortunate position of being at a loss because the world thinks only in physical presents and physical gains.
We think more items means we are winning at the giving and receiving game.
When we believe we have more than the next guy, this then seems positive.
The Course reminds us that the world and things are temporary and always fluctuating.
We can never know from time to time how and when something can change or when it will cease being functional.
This is why we want to thank the world for providing us with amazing things to assist us in God’s purpose of sharing Love. But otherwise, we want to be extremely clear about how they are temporal and why we want to not have attachment or suffering over when they come and go.
We want to let go of the world’s things, let go of our attachment. And we also want to appreciate them for being helpful.
But appreciate that they are not real so it makes no sense to give them special attention beyond the ways in which they are useful for our function as the light oft he world.
We want to let the world be not something we are invested in so we don’t get distracted by things.
Then we can just appreciate the spiritual purpose of our lives, which is extending love in giving and receiving. We do both because they both give us and fill us with God’s Love. We are invited to trust that giving is exactly the same as receiving.
We gain just as much Love in each of these acts.
This is why we are perfectly happy to do both and either. Just remember that it is God’s energy that is what feeds us, no matter what the received or given gift is.
At the base of this gift, the Love of God is the only important part of the gift.
Everything else can be fun filler, but it is all filler.