My wife and I are writing a book about generosity. Our theory is that it is part of the make-up of every human being (the religious as well as non-theists) to care about one another. We have collected information on the teachings about generosity passed down from one generation to the next and stories that illustrate extreme generosity for almost every major group now. However, we have very little information on Spiritualism and generosity. Can you give me some guidance as it relates to your beliefs in this area and where we might find a modern-day, heart-felt story (500 to 1,000 words) to use as an example? We don't need to use real names. We will be delighted to conduct a telephone interview if necessary. We want to be inclusive, but we need some help.
Thanks so much.
In terms of the American Spiritualist movement, which focused on mediumship to substantiate life after death, I don't know of any writings or teachings relating to generosity. However, I would check the writings of Ayn Rand. I think she had a book THE VIRTUE OF SELFISHNESS. Her idea was that whatever moral action a person did, he/she did it for self. Thus, if a person was generous, it somehow benefitted him/her. Most religions focus on the Golden Rule or on virtues as The Sermon on the Mount. They have kindness and generosity as virtues in themselves. In Hinduism, I'd look into (I think) Karma Yoga, which is yoga of action. I don't know any specific works, but you could probably find writings in the literature of the Vedanta Society. Also, Jainism has a strong ethical/moral tradition, especially regarding non-violence. Joel