In this life, nothing connects us more than giving.
Giving of ourselves, giving of our time, giving of our resources.
Giving is demonstrative.
It requires action and connects us in ways that words cannot.
To me, no story conveys the power of giving more than the book by Shel Silverstein, The Giving Tree.
The story is of a boy and a tree. As a child, the boy feels great connection to the tree as he plays in its limbs and swings from its branches and rests in its shade.
But over time, the connection of proximity is broken as the boy grows up and moves away. To stay connected, the tree continues to give something of herself to the boy each time he visits...her apples, her branches, her trunk. Eventually, the tree is nothing but an old stump -- and the tree continues to give. Her final gift to the boy (who is now an old man) is a seat on which he can rest.
The story teaches us so much about connection and giving. The tree chose to connect herself with the boy fully. She didn't just give some of her apples or some of her branches -- she gave them all. And the extent of her giving is inconceivable. For she appears to have nothing left.
But she was happy.
The story teaches us to respond to requests for help not just when we have an excess...not just when it doesn't hurt...but to respond for requests when we encounter a need.
And it teaches that we must have faith in the connections that we make. And believe that the universe will respond in kind to our need when and if it should arise.
And so the purse I made, The Giving Purse, is all about connection and inspiring us all to give fully to others.
Give compliments, give smiles, give money, give good fortune, give love and give your time.
To the Buyer of this Purse:
You and I are connected.
And I made this purse with someone like you in mind.
This purse has magic woven into every stitch. It exists to bring joy to the buyer and to all those who see it.
People will be drawn to your purse. And some will overcome their shyness and they will ask about it. Magic.
At that moment, a connection is made ~ you+me+them.
They may even compliment your purse.
How will you use the moment? To connect? To give?
Included in this purse are small cards of appreciation to give to anyone who comments on your purse as you use it. It's a reward for their kindness. The card thanks the receiver for their gift of connection and encourages them to continue to give gifts to the world. It asks them to pass the card to the next person they witness giving of themselves.
And so like that. The card will continue to move from giver to giver...connecting us all together.
If you are not going to use this purse, please do not buy it.
For to place it on a shelf is to do it a disservice.
And should this purse become dirty, should some of its leaves fall off or its edges begin to fray...
Then we will know that The Giving Purse had given all that it could --
And the world will be that much happier for the gift.
P.S. I'll let you know how it goes. Fingers crossed. I hope it raises a lot of money!