This I Believe

Matthew - Xenia, Ohio
Entered on January 25, 2007

I believe in sharing.

From when I was young, innocent, and believed every word my mother told me there remains one undeniable truth which still resonates today: “share everything”. Since then whenever I am in the company of anyone other than myself I imagine my mother whispering in my ear, “Matthew, make sure you ask everyone if they would like to have some of your…” Multiple times in my life I have been incredibly depressed both emotionally and fiscally, but I never forgot the acumen of my mother’s words. I always heed her advice and share whatever I can despite the fact it may be my last coffee bean; unfailingly, my soul is rejuvenated. Even when my mother and I are butting heads it is inescapable that I recall her lesson about human interaction and how much of an effect her wisdom has had on my day-to-day life. To share brings joy, kinship, and love into the lives of the people around you (including yourself).

Every time I share it seems to rub off on those around me creating stronger human connections through cooperative interaction. Sharing is a small insect stuck in a spider’s web, the more it struggles to be free the more the world embraces it as morsel that must be consumed to survive. Everyday I am forced to face up to the fact that competition is the law of the land, yet I never concede my ethical standards to greed and self-love. If I am in a situation where I feel that what I have to offer is poignant I do not attempt to inflate my own ego through gloating or belittling others. Rather, I step outside of myself and realize that cooperation among people through the selfless transmission of knowledge, ideas, food, clothing, or anything else will always bring me, and more importantly those around me, more joy than the antithesis: egocentricity. For me, cooperation yields positive results.

Throughout my life I have been blessed with wonderful friends who often seem to understand me better than I understand myself, my own personal altruistic adjuncts. Not only do my friends understand me they are inextricably a part of my waking consciousness. I believe my friends maintain a high level of generosity towards me because they know that if they are cold that I will give them the sweater off of my back. Oftentimes I live on the fringe of comfort, but if I get an extra dollar to my name I try to share it with those who need it most (occasionally need manifests itself as a witty conversationalist at the pub). Sometimes sharing can be as spontaneous as forking over recently purchased groceries to a human-family-member-in-need on the side of the road, and each time I use what I have to create a sense of cooperation among my fellow beings I know that love is truly a part of life.