“You make a living by what you get; you make a life by what you give.” ~ often attributed to Churchill, but perhaps from the ever-elusive, always-inspiring “Unknown”
This month we will explore a documentary featuring the late and inspiring Heidemarie Schwermer. We read an article about Heidemarie early in Gift Ecology Circle, She Hasn’t Used Money in Fifteen Years. In the last few years of her life she gave away all her possessions including her home, depending on her ability to connect and love people to sustain her.
Here are a few questions to contemplate with the film.
- How much do our possessions define your experience of life? How about our culture’s experience of life?
- Do we really need money? Why or why not?
- Could Heidemarie’s lifestyle and choices work for you? For your community? Your country? The world? Why or why not?
This month you have a homeplay assignment encouraging you to step out of your comfort zone for kindness between money and people.
Use slightly more money than is comfortable to you (push your edges) to commit an intentional act of kindness for someone or group of people. Look for an opportunity to intend a positive ripple in someone’s life. Let go of the outcome. Examples of this may be to buy a coffee or lunch for someone you don’t know. You may want to leave a Smile card (downloadable PDF here) behind. Pay attention to how you are feeling before, during and after the act. Answer these questions:
- How did you feel when you discovered an opportunity to do something for someone?
- How did you feel when you made the decision to put it into action?
- Did you feel any hesitancy or resistance?
- Did you think about the “right amount” of money that you could gift?
- How did you feel after you set this in motion?
- Was this a secret act, or did the recipient(s) know it was you?
Have fun this month!