What is Charity?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by wheezy, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. wheezy macrumors 65816

    wheezy

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    #1
    What is Charity, to you? There's religious definitions, biblical, political, tax definitions - but what is it to you?

    This is just something I've been thinking on a lot lately, and I'm curious what others think - both religious and non-religious.
     
  2. 184550 Guest

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    #2
    The giving of goods and/ or services to others without the expectation of something in return.
     
  3. quasinormal macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    My mother used to always say; Cold as charity. She also thought the nuns at the convent boarding school she attended were a bunch of amoral sadists.

    Personally I don't like charities. I don't see why we need them - giving should be as natural as breathing.
     
  4. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #4
    I believe the OP was looking at "charity" the action, not "Charity" the institution.

    "Charity begins at home." is an old saw, and not always untrue.

    I view charity as giving something of yourself, sufficient to feel a little pain.

    This could be material things, money, or your precious time.

    A Charity may issue a tax receipt for the first two, but with the last one you get nada. ;)
     
  5. Jackintosh macrumors 6502a

    Jackintosh

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    #5
    Charity is how conservatives avoid social responsibility as administered by the government, while trying to appear concerned and saintly.

    They're under the illusion that throwing a few bucks into a bucket is substitution for federal social programs that actually provide services effectively at a national level.
     
  6. thewitt macrumors 68020

    thewitt

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    #6
    Social responsibility is not a job or power granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States and as such is technically illegal.
     
  7. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    #7
    And you completely dodge the question, turning it into a political issue. How about you feel as a PERSON instead of a political entity?

    By your reckoning, everything done to help after 9/11 (clean up, blood donations, money, etc.) should have been illegal, which those who participated should have been locked up.

    BL.
     
  8. wheezy thread starter macrumors 65816

    wheezy

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    #8
    I am not trying to make this a political or party discussion; rather a discussion of virtues I am seeing less and less of every day - and culturally it's a dangerous, selfish course to pursue.

    The bible refers to charity as the greatest of virtues, and as a virtue it cannot refer strictly to a tax-free entity or non-profit pursuit. Charity isn't a status granted by a governing body.

    To me, charity is seeing others as God sees them - imperfect but of infinite value; each soul worthy of every blessing of heaven. Seeing others as I wish others would see me - worth fighting for, worth caring for, worth supporting, worth saving.

    As I strive to apply this approach to those I know and those I don't, it instills a calm within me to be less harsh, more kind, more forgiving, and more accepting. This attitude obviously stands at odds in our political environment as both parties and mind sets are guilty of being harsh, unforgiving, less kind, and more divisive.

    Charity, true charity as a virtue, has greater power to unite us than any political party platform ever will.

    Charity, kindness, gratitude, humility - these virtues can help cure so many of societies ills much better than any government program will. By trying to pass the responsibility of these virtues into a government body rank with moral decline is a disservice to everyone.

    Just food for thought. Thanks for your replies.
     
  9. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #9
    The etymology of "charity" is the Latin word caritas, which is typically translated as meaning "love" but may also bear on the origin of "caring". You must consider that the bible you are familiar with is itself a translation and the English words you read have been smithed into the closest meaning, often slightly dented, possibly having shed some of the subtlety of the original sense.

    The governing body grants charitable status by dint of favorable taxation/exemption. If that bothers you, so sorry, but organizations that strive to help people do benefit from society's (government's) support and encouragement. That this may dilute or defer our inclination to be kind and helpful toward each other is problematic. If you want to try to address this, be my guest.
     
  10. wheezy thread starter macrumors 65816

    wheezy

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    #10
    Very well put, and exactly so! Charity in the biblical sense greater resembles love than Charity in the government sense.

    Also, the tax statuses granted by the government do not bother me in the slightest, rather, my aim in this posting was just to see how people viewed Charity; whether biblical or not and if the simple act of giving money makes one posses Charity as a virtue.
     
  11. AhmedFaisal, Oct 8, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 10, 2013
  12. sviato macrumors 68020

    sviato

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    #12
    Charity is when middle-class white people feel guilty for their first world benefits and attempt to give to others to make themselves feel better about themselves.
     
  13. tshrimp macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Charity is giving of ones time or money in order to help someone less fortunate than ourselves. With this there should be no expectation of notoriety ,and should be anonymous when possible. I admit I was not a Romney fan until I saw via others and not himself of the time and money (especially time) that he has contributed to the less fortunate. He did not brag about it himself, and every story of his giving has come from someone other than himself.

    ----------

    ?!?!?!?!? I guess everyone is entitled to their view, but this sounds like crazy talk :)
     
  14. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #14
    I like your definition, though I'd like it better secularized ...

    Charity is compassion towards all beings.

    It does not need to involve giving anything more than consideration and kindness.
     
  15. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #15
    Seems like it is to me
     
  16. tshrimp macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    #16
    Very nice post.
     
  17. Aldaris macrumors 65816

    Aldaris

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    #17
    To me...

    Giving of oneself to another in need, by and of your own conscience and choice.
     
  18. fridgeymonster3 macrumors 6502

    fridgeymonster3

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    #18
    Charity is whatever US Tax Code §170 and Treas. Reg. §1.170A(1)-(13) allow me to deduct from my tax return :p
     
  19. Huntn, Oct 15, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012

    Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #19
    I like your take on it. :) Technically: The voluntary giving of help, typically money, to those in need. Help or money given in this way. The Conservative View: Charity of my choosing allows me to give less than having the evil government distribute my tax dollars as it sees fit... In essence give when you feel like and no worries about how viable a program actually is. $5 in the Salvation Army pot at Xmas should do it. ;)

    Your view in contrast to: General Welfare Clause
     
  20. ericrwalker macrumors 68030

    ericrwalker

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    #20

    There you have it, the federal government can do whatever it wants in the name of "general welfare.


    Or you can look at it for what it really is and the rules of the constitution are for the general welfare, and that's why it's limited to what it can do.
     
  21. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #21
    I have absolutely no idea what you just tried to say. :confused:
     
  22. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #22
    You are not alone
     
  23. fridgeymonster3 macrumors 6502

    fridgeymonster3

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    #23
    I'm interested in your citation for your above statement. Have you taken Constitutional Law in law school or happen to be a Constitutional scholar? Even if either is true, I would appreciate if you'd support your statement with legal facts.

    The United States Constitution, Article I, Section 8 states: "The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises, to pay Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States" (emphasis added).
     
  24. ericrwalker macrumors 68030

    ericrwalker

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    #24
    What I am saying is that the constitution was written to promote the general welfare. Then the articles of the constitution give each branch of government rules that they must follow.

    It's like parents making household rules and stating that these rules are made for your general welfare, then breaking their own rules and saying its for their welfare.

    Why give the federal government limits on their powers (The 18 Enumerated powers) then say they can do things outside those powers?

    Either the government is limited or its not.
     
  25. fridgeymonster3 macrumors 6502

    fridgeymonster3

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    #25
    First, general welfare is part of one of the enumerated powers for Congress. Congress may act only if there is an express or implied authority in the Constitution, whereas states may act unless the Constitution prohibits the action. See the Article I and the 10th Amendment.

    Second, the federal government is made up of three branches: Legislative, Executive and Judicial. You cannot equate Article I powers to the federal government powers. That completely leaves out the power of the other two branches of government.

    Third, the federal government is limited. States have substantial lawmaking power, such as criminal laws (think any criminal statute, abortion, gay marriage, etc. etc.).
     

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