Not an awful lot of giving goes on at Christmas.
That may surprise you. But mostly what goes on at Christmas is exchange.
Not that there’s anything at all wrong with exchange; it’s what makes the world go round; it’s what money is all about. But exchange doesn’t harness the law of attraction in the same way as giving does. That may be why it is that you feel that you give and give and give but nothing seems to come back in return.
After all, most of the world’s spiritual teachings say that the secret of life is giving and that if you give, you will receive. And they’re right. But it has to be unconditional giving — and we’re not very well trained in that.
So let’s take a look at what is giving and what is exchange.
- It’s exchange when you swap gifts with someone, knowing in advance that this is what’s going to happen.
- It’s exchange when you have to give a present or you’ll feel bad about being mean.
- It’s exchange when you give because you should give, because it’s what good people do.
- It’s exchange when you know you’ll be found wanting by another if you don’t give.
- It’s exchange when you give in order to have another person thank you or admire you.
- It’s exchange when you give in order to make sure the other person has the gift that you want them to have rather than something they might have liked better.
- It’s exchange when you get to go to Nepal or Vietnam or another trip of a lifetime on a sponsored trip in order to help underprivileged kids.
The law of attraction doesn’t give back when it’s exchange. That’s because you got the pay-off immediately. Again, there’s nothing wrong with exchange. We’d all be a lot poorer without it.
But to the law of attraction, it simply isn’t giving if there are any conditions.
Don’t worry; you may well feel great during any part of the exchange process and then your vibration is high and you’ll attract good things. But the vibration has to be clear.
So how do we give? The perfect giving is giving because we can’t help but give; because we are so full and flowing with the joy and grace of life that we can’t help but give. And the most powerful giving of all is when we give privately, in secret, without any expectation whatsoever of reward or payback. The giving itself is the delight. And such giving has such a lovely vibration that the law of attraction flows energy and grace towards you; it’s impossible for it not to.
It’s also giving when you allow someone else the gift of being able to give to you. After all, giving feels so good that it’s a bit mean not to let someone else have that pleasure isn’t it? But to do that, of course, you have to be able to receive.
That’s the other tricky bit.
The inability to receive is the primary reason why we go on giving and giving (or exchanging) when we are running on empty. And again, nothing seems to come back.
It’s receiving when you say ‘thank you.’ It’s refusing to receive when you diss someone else’s gift whether it’s a compliment or something physical.
Okay so the compliment may be for a sweater you got from the charity shop but if the other person likes it and says so, you need to allow them the pleasure of giving that gift by receiving it. And if they think you look good, then do them the respect of allowing their opinion. Whether you think you look like a bag lady or a dog’s dinner is irrelevant at that point. They have a right to have a good opinion of you; that’s their gift.
And I know it’s hard to receive ‘gifts’ that you don’t want from friends and family with gratitude but do it, just this once if you can. That’s the real gift...
But perhaps this is all getting a little too complicated. If there’s any message that I want to get over at this Christmas season, it’s this: give up! By giving up you create space for the new and the good to come.
So if Christmas is a challenging time for you, head for those wardrobes and cupboards now and clear out everything that is no longer relevant. You are not going to fit into that again! You are not going to bring back the ‘good’ past by keeping it. You are not going to go to the ball in that Cinderella! Give it up! Only when you give it up can your fairy godmother bring you the new wonders.
And if you are going to take it to the charity shop (and they will be so pleased this time of year!) then bless it, and bless it and bless it so that your love and blessing goes to the new and grateful owner who will never, ever know who you are.
You can also use the system of tithing. If you want a reminder of that, it’s just two articles down (after this one) on my blog.
Tithing is when you give directly to and for inspiration. That means you are putting your money where your higher self is; where your joy is; to the book, workshop, teacher, whatever, that will bring you closer to the Source energy. And that’s the perfect giving because it has such a clear intention. And the Source flows love straight back to you.
The second tithe is for celebration, which is where you celebrate the joy of being alive. This gives back to the Source too because it gives joy to God that we are experiencing Its creation so happily. So both these are simultaneously giving and receiving. You give for inspiration and joy purely because you want to celebrate growth and life.
So, amid the clutter and fuss, if you want both to give and receive this Christmas, all you have to do is find a sacred or secret place (the middle of a garden or field will do) and give thanks for the year. Bless yourself and everything on this beautiful planet. Perceive that all is very, very good. And leave a little gift of something behind you. It’s not your business who or what picks it up; it’s your unconditional Christmas gift to God. And if you don’t have a physical gift to give, maybe you could do a little dance?
Your gift may not be seen or appreciated by any human being. But it will be adored by the Holy One and it will bring you peace, hope and goodwill in return.
So may your Christmas be blessed and holy and peaceful and filled with goodness and delight.
And enjoy all the exchanging!