Worried about doing something more for Christmas? Regardless of your particular religious belief, we — meaning all living things — are *all* in this together. Whatever you have in this life, whether rich or poor, whether young or old, whether fundamentally religious or outright atheist – we all must, as Ben Franklin said, “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.” The poor, the needy, are surely as much your brothers and sisters — your responsibility — as are the rich and well-to-do. Any there are may more of the poor and needy. Help those, human or otherwise, who most need the help.
Uncle Bob does not need a new tie, and cousin Cindy doesn’t need a sweater. Your kids don’t need new toys and your wife or husband — if they are worth being your wife or husband — will love you just as much for a movie night out as for a new Lex (which you cannot reasonably afford anyway). Instead, why not give a few extra dollars to the local Salvation Army, or rescue mission, or homeless shelter? Why not support the crying needs of the many, rather than spending recklessly only to benefit the rich and the big corporations? Why not contribute to the support of poor children or homeless animals, rather than buying that meaningless bauble, or some glittering nothing only to impress. Especially this year, give to those who are needy, not to those who are greedy.
Especially at Christmas time, we are encouraged to give generously. But big corporations, big business and the “1%” want us to give thoughtlessly. Instead, give with the express purpose of helping the poor, the sick, the needy, the natural world… not the rich and well-to-do.
You probably are not religious, and you may not believe in “Our Father”. To me, that does NOT make a difference. But Matthew 6:1-4 is relevant:
“So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.” (New American Standard Bible)
Whether you are a Christian, a Jew, a Moslem, a Buddhist, a Jain, a Sikh, a Hindu, an adherent to any other religion, an agnostic (as am I) or an atheist… this advice is relevant. Your religion or lack thereof is not the point. Helping those in need — whether they be human, or animal or the planet — is the point.