Collaboration creates prosperity

July 25, 2008

So far this is just a theory to me, (see title) but Lynne Twist in , ‘Soul of Money’ makes a very good case for it.

She sees money as simply another resource, not necessarily more important than enthusiasm, commitment, and hard work. All these are needed to realize projects, and money is just one of them.

She gave the example of some old Ethiopian women who wanted to run a teahouse on the side of a much used path. They had already built a round hut but needed teacups, saucers a kettle, etc. Some Western women with the Hunger Project were invited to a meeting of these women and volunteered financial support to be partners in this teahouse venture.

‘It was such a perfect collaboration, and I remember thinking that we were all just women putting in our piece of a larger picture to make something extraordinary and important happen. It was such a joyful, beautiful experience. We weren’t giving these ‘poor old women’ money. We were all collaborating in service of them and of everyone who walks on this path to the market- and our desire to make a difference. ….I call this ‘real’ investment and it creates no recipient’.

 Later she says:

‘Philanthropy is not just for rich people who feel magnanimous, guilty or embarassed about having more than they need…

We have an opportunity now to retire traditional charity as we’ve known it, and in its place create partnerships in which a shared vision is realized through solidarity and the collaboration of know-how, hard work, and cash resources. This is the new philanthropy, contribution and service in collaboration. When you are in that space, that place, problems dissolve, miracles abound.’

I love it. When can I start?


6 Responses to “Collaboration creates prosperity”

  1. leftywritey Says:

    I love that philosophy, because under that philosophy, everybody benefits — in giving, one gets.

    I also like the thought that we are all connected to a bigger picture, and therefore, to each other. I may have something you need, you may have something I need, and there is no differentiation between giver and receiver because everyone essentially inhabits both roles, at one time or another, throughout life.

    Great post. : )


  2. szoutewelle Says:

    thanks Em. That eradication of the boundaries between giver and receiver is one of the most fundamental things I learned in being an artist in healthcare. That’s the moment when hearts meet.

    I enjoyed visiting your blog http://emilymurdoch.wordpress.com/, and applaud your work for the horses. My heart is sore at the thought of these fine beings being hurt or abused in any way, let alone being slaughtered! Thanks for caring and acting.

  3. leftywritey Says:

    Awwww, thank you. : )

    The horse slaughter reality breaks my heart, too. Today I am buoyed by the fact that headway is being made — I just posted about the new Conyers-Burton Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act of 2008, and find it very hopeful for the horses. It tackles the cruelty of transport of horses to slaughter, and if it succeeds, the horses will finally be safe.

    Next we need to change the reality of the life and slaughter of our food animals. This afternoon, I watched videos on cows and pigs, their living conditions and their slaughter, and sat at the computer and cried. Because of it, today I became a vegetarian. I have a lot of research to do, and cookbooks to buy. But the decision makes me feel a little better, like I’m doing something to help.

    Which makes me think of your more recent post I just read — thank God for books, art, and the beauty in the world. The ugliness is too hard to bear without the beauty to lift our spirits. I also wanted to say that your painting of the plums is absolutely amazing!


  4. szoutewelle Says:

    hi Em, I’ve been a vegetarian for years. I guess in the beginning it takes a lot of adjusting to, but it is worth it and gets easier.
    And it is a good feeling to know I am not adding to that suffering, though I still wear leather. Oh well. We do what we can.

    Thanks for your appreciation of my art. And I agree about beauty being a balm for the world’s ugliness.

    Another thought about veggie dishes. Many ethnic dishes are so tasty and contain no meat. Tacos made with chili san carne, vegetable curries from India, all kinds of Chinese food – all are wonderful and you never miss the meat. Good luck.

  5. leftywritey Says:

    Thank you!

    I will not sway in my decision not to eat meat — it’s day four of vegetarianism, and I’m doing fine and feel great about it — I don’t want to add to the suffering, either, and once you know, you know, and there’s no turning back.

    Like you, I, too, will do the best I can, because yes, whatever we can do will help — for me, milk is what is hardest to avoid, so far — not in the sense of drinking milk, because I bought soy milk and I like it just fine, but because milk powder is in everything, including bread and pasta, making it hard to avoid completely.


  6. szoutewelle Says:

    Congratulations on your commitment.
    I didn’t ever cut out milk though seeing the cattle industry I can see why someone would. Makes it rather complicated though.
    I eat no meat or meat products, but occasionally eat fish (I like it and feel I need it). I do eat eggs.

    Be careful with your health, get enough B vitamins from other food sources, and take care.

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