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The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.
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The Virtues Basket: What Is Generosity and How Do We Show It?

PRESENTED BY Setareh Samandari Zargarpour | Oct 25, 2021

Do you equate the virtue of generosity with material gifts or money? If you do, try thinking about it this alternate way: as the spiritual gifts of ideas, kindness, encouragement, time, and respect. 

These non-material gifts can all be various forms of true generosity.

Generosity means giving and sharing what we have with other people, especially with those in need. Generosity involves sharing things like our food, our finances, our knowledge, our joy, and our time with others. All of this proves that generosity can be both a spiritual value and a positive attitude. Being generous engenders gratitude, which benefits our lives by building a loving community and gaining resources and blessings for everyone. 

God is very generous to us, and has given us eyes to see, ears to hear, intelligence to explore the infinite possibilities in the universe, and many other gifts. In turn, God wants us to be generous to others. The more we give, the more blessings we will receive, the holy scriptures of all Faiths tell us. By being generous we show love to others. Baha’u’llah, the prophet and founder of the Baha'i Faith, reminded us of God’s generosity, and of our human potential:

To give and to be generous are attributes of Mine; well is it with him that adorneth himself with My virtues.

Generosity shows our gratitude towards life and its bounty. People with positive attitudes are not only generous with their money but their time, joy, ideas, and opportunities. When we choose generosity, we open the door to many blessings. Generosity benefits our lives because it helps us build a supportive, mutually helpful community. When problems arise, having a community that supports you is more valuable than having money. Our friends make us spiritually rich. 

Generosity brings blessings into our lives. When we’re generous, we naturally feel content and joyful to have had the chance to do a good thing. Abdu’l-Baha, the son and successor of Baha’u’llah, summarized the reasons for that joy and those blessings when he wrote in The Secret of Divine Civilization that:

… the attributes of the people of faith are justice and fair-mindedness; forbearance and compassion and generosity; consideration for others; candor, trustworthiness, and loyalty; love and loving-kindness; devotion and determination and humanity.

Generosity brings real meaning to life. We need to help our children practice generosity from a young age to develop the habit of giving within them. This Virtues Basket video about generosity helps educate us and our children to understand the definition of generosity, and help everyone learn through the video how to practice generosity in simple terms. 

Setareh Samandari Zargarpour has always been an artist at heart, after a 20-year career in Banking as Branch Manager for Wells Fargo and Chase she transitioned to working in Film. She had finished her Master of Arts in Political Science from CSUN and utilized it...



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