What Everybody Ought to Know About Giving
Thus far, we’ve been evolving through the power of reception. That force has been pushing us forward and developing in us, a desire to receive for ourselves; a desire to acquire, understand, know, and dominate; also, a desire to envy other people, meaning to want what others have for ourselves.
However, now we must balance our force of reception with the other force that exists in Nature: the force of bestowal. Constantly being under the domination of the force of reception—the harmful and detrimental force—creates imbalance in Nature, in the environment, in man, and in human society.
For this reason, we must acquire the power of bestowal, the power of giving and participating. The force of bestowal can develop into the greatest power of love. Man can develop that power only through free choice, by designing an environment that will constantly give him an example by which he will change. Knowing the force of bestowal and its benefits will help all of us understand our lives, and reality in general, far beyond our current knowledge.
After developing for thousands of years, and especially in the last fifty or sixty years, we are beginning to see the end of our egoistic development. We are beginning to see that it’s impossible to advance having one desire that is aimed to receive, to acquire, to draw abundance to ourselves while being inconsiderate of others and of Nature. Additional desires are now appearing in us: We want to understand more, feel more, to “penetrate” our world. Our powers of reception aren’t enough; they’re ruining us and the environment; they’re ruining the whole of Nature around us.
This is why our awareness of the other force we’re missing—the power of giving—is now awakening in us. In truth, this is the force that’s actually running the world. The power of giving is the great force of “Mother Nature” from which all evolution stems, because everything happens by the power of giving, by the force of bestowal. Like parents toward their children, Nature tends to us. However much we enjoy Nature—because we receive everything from it—nonetheless, we are not like it at all.
The Key to Hastening Your Development Is Giving
If we consider the essence of our lives; the process we are going through while evolving; and the purpose we should reach, we will see that every development in Nature is the result of Nature’s purpose. If we wish to know the purpose, we need to know Nature. We need to study and to understand the forces acting in it, and then we can understand what is happening to us and contemplate how to further develop, in harmony with Nature, toward a truly good and peaceful life.
If we begin to think in this way, we will see how all of Nature operates using two forces: the giving force and the receiving force. The giving force is the force of bestowal; of consideration; bonding; and ultimately, the general power of love.
The power of love includes all the positive forces in all the degrees of Nature: the still, vegetative, animate, and speaking degrees. These are the forces that give life and good influence, that pull us toward bonding and sustaining. We evolve specifically through these positive forces.
If we examine our body—or anything else in the universe, we will see the governance of two forces everywhere; we will see the force of giving and the force of reception acting in all of reality. From the time of the initial formation of the universe, these two forces have connected, creating a form that is neither one nor the other. This is how matter was formed. The forces of bestowal and reception evolved together, creating negative and positive particles, electrons and protons, which although opposite, together created the atom. The atoms connected into bigger blocs, forming crystals, which are forms of matter at the still degree.
Though this combination of forces happens in the vegetative and in the still degrees, it’s harder for us to discern it. Whereas in animals, we see this more clearly; we see how a living organism forms out of the energy that exists in the embryonic cell. The cell absorbs materials from the outside, and the living body is created by absorbing, emitting, and combining those materials according to pieces of information within which are data that is in conflict between the two forces.
So it goes for all the degrees in nature: the inanimate, vegetative, and animate nature; that is, everything develops through combinations of the two forces. We can see in Nature a gradual, instinctive development according to a predetermined plan embedded within every being. Every being evolves according to those embedded laws and also according to the environment. Further, as the environment changes, evolution changes. In the end, and primarily on the human level, we see that the giving, supporting, and providing force of Nature is more concealed, deeper; while, the receiving force is the force of Nature that develops in a more conspicuous and more evident manner.
The more one receives, the more one grows. Man, who’s been evolving for hundreds of thousands of years, goes through the same evolution as animals. However, if we examine the state we find ourselves in today, it seems that our evolution at the animate level has come to an end. It seems that we are shifting toward a different mode.
We’ve exhausted all the receiving force within us and come to a state where we cannot develop through it any longer. We’ve begun to really see our need for the giving force in Nature, which is appearing now on the part of the general bestowal, on the part of giving, and even on the part of love.
How the Power of Giving Trumps the Power of Receiving
Through our study of Nature, we are discovering that Nature is round, global, and integral, as though enveloping us in a sphere. Accordingly, we feel that we are opposite from Nature, that we must somehow use all the treasures given to us in a manner that is in balance with it. And yet, we can’t because the force of bestowal is absent in our behavior, in our development, and in our knowledge.
How is it possible, then, to acquire knowledge about this power?
During our development up until now, we’ve always used the power of reception—a separating force. We’ve compared ourselves to others, desiring to be superior to others, more successful, and above others. Whereas previously, we’ve worked successfully with this power of reception, now we must improve ourselves and acquire the other force, the power of bestowal and giving. We must learn how to work with the power of bestowal—more specifically, how to combine those two forces together.
We are currently in a special situation that enables us to receive information about the other force, the force of bestowal, and learn what we can acquire through it. We can find examples for this other, giving, force even in our egoistic world, which is built around the force of reception.
The force of reception at the still, vegetative, and animate levels is an instinctive force by which one consumes the other. In Man, that force exists excessively; therefore, Man wants to receive and use the entire world for his delight, not taking anyone else into consideration. But even so, within our environment and within our society, there are examples of the two opposite forces: there is “me” and “the other”; “me” and the “environment”; “me” and “humanity.”
Through relations between me and others, through others’ impact on me, I will be able to organize an environment and study the force of bestowal, to study the power of bonding and the power of giving versus the power of receiving. Thus, if we properly arrange psychology as a science that researches man’s relations with the human environment, we will be able to start receiving clear data and information about the power of bestowal and will be able to study it atop the power of reception that we’ve acquired thus far. We will be able to learn to what extent we oppose the environment. If it is a good environment that favors advancement, it will show us what the force of bestowal is like.
Through the same qualities of envy, lust, and honor, the environment begins to affect us; we begin to feel that we have no choice but to adapt ourselves to it. Only in this way will we gain respect and appreciation, rather than disgrace and expulsion. This leaves us—egoistic by nature—only one choice: to position ourselves in a respectable manner in relation to the environment so as to feel great and respected.
Finding That Balance and Perfection
If our environment is managed by proper educators, it can teach each of us how to truly feel the force of bestowal. We will begin to see how special this force is.
In this way, we will consider our environment as stages in our education. The environment will be to us as parents toward a baby. We will be influenced by it as if by loving and caring parents who provide us with abundance and understand all our wants and weaknesses.
Thus, gradually, through small influences by a considerate and merciful environment, we will grow and become as youths, although we’re actually adults. Each of us will go through these stages of development, first like a baby, then like a child, and then like a youth.
Afterwards, when we have grown enough, we will understand that the force of bestowal can work in our favor, that through this force we can give to the environment. We will become equal members in that environment, treating each other in a balanced manner; that is, the force of reception and the force of bestowal will become balanced between us. Thus, gradually, such environments will develop.
Additionally, we will acquire the power of bestowal. To the extent that we acquire this power, we will begin to relate to Nature as a “mother” to us. We will grow towards the environment, by this power of bestowal that we gradually acquire, first like that of a bestowing baby, then like a bestowing child, a bestowing youth, and finally, to like a bestowing grownup. Here, we are beginning to be like Nature, feeling the inner forces that exist within it, the forces behind matter.
As we study these forces with our intellect, we will begin to acquire the inner wisdom that operates the whole of Nature.
In other words, by acquiring these two forces of bestowal and reception so they are balanced in us, we come to know Nature, the Mother, the operating force that creates life, the force that leads life toward its purpose. It is then that we can also discover Nature’s purpose and gain a better understanding of our lives and where we are in relation to Nature. Everything becomes transparent; we penetrate all that is happening around and within us; and begin to see everything as combinations of the forces.
This is the knowledge we acquire. We don’t acquire it superficially, as we previously acquired knowledge when we used only the force of reception. Rather, the combination of the two forces and the qualities we acquire grant us inner tools. These are not like the external tools that physicists, chemists, and other scientists use with their research instruments. Instead, we begin to feel the whole of Nature within us, and ourselves as an integral part of it.
In this way, we begin to see, live, and integrate with this entire process. We also don’t feel ourselves at the level of the solid, animate body or at the levels of vegetative or still. Instead, we feel the forces that operate in the body; how they equalize with the Nature that surrounds us; and how they are unified and connected to the general, global nature.
In that state, we really see ourselves as an integral part of this system and come to know the laws of Nature, feeling the eternity and perfection that exist in Nature.
Evolution ends when each person attains the whole of Nature, becoming identical to it, in balance with it, in wholeness and unity, using all of qualities in a mode of giving; that is, all of us must eventually come to use the force of giving just as Nature does. When we achieve that state, we’ll see that our entire evolution has actually been a preparation for this. Even before Earth was created, all the forms of development of the ego in the world of reception—from inanimate to vegetative, animate, and the birth of humanity until this day—have been preparations for the evolution of the human species, which is now on the threshold of entering the new world of bestowal.
Written by Michael Laitman
Michael Laitman is a global thinker dedicated to generating a transformational shift in society through a new global education, which he views as the key to solving the most pressing issues of our time. He is the Founder of the ARI Institute, Professor of Ontology & Theory of Knowledge, PhD in Philosophy, MS in Medical Cybernetics. You can find him on Google+, YouTube and Twitter