December 29th, 2014
03:52 PM ET

Why giving shouldn't be a solitary activity

By Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn

Editor's note: Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn are the authors of A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity. This is the second in a series of three guest posts.

Secular people often make giving a solitary activity at the end of the year, one that feels like a sacrifice. That’s the wrong way to think about giving back. We learned a lot from churches and temples and the way they turn giving into an enjoyable, uplifting social activity. Our profile of a master pastor at a mega-church, Bill Hybels, reveals some of the magic he employs.  We all are social animals and when we do things with a group of people we like, the activity becomes more fun.

So form a book club and engage in a few volunteer or giving activities together—or link your book club to Book Clubs for Change, Choose a need in your community or an area of the world that you all care about. Then choose a topic and an organization you might work with. Or maybe consider an on-location trip to the area and meet some of the people you want to help?

Or join a chapter of Dining for Women, which is one of the secular organizations that borrows from the religious notion of fellowship and joyous giving for a cause.  DFW has guests bring a pot luck dish to a host's home and then they all donate the money they would spend at a restaurant to a chosen cause empowering women worldwide.   Some groups have a subcommittee screen a list of finalists and the group votes on a final selection. In A Path Appears, we list some other great organizations—there’s even one called Beer for Books—that make giving a social and fun occasion.

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  1. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Lmao im still trying to figure out how abusive behavior and bible th u mping go hand in hand? Perhaps "someone" could explain THAT to me????

    January 13, 2015 at 1:19 pm |
    • Philip

      Jesus took a whip to crooked Jew banksters, Chrissy. Why don't you ask him. And he called famous religious leader children of Satan to their faces and in public. But yeah, angry mobs of people just like you and Donna used to throw rocks at him for being such an "abusive" man.

      January 13, 2015 at 4:43 pm |
      • banasy©

        Oh, I don't think so; I'm not stupid enough for the mob mentality.

        And Jesus was not "abusive."

        But, projection is de rigueur on these blogs.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:00 pm |
  2. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    I wasnt trying to imply you were @ banasy. I was SAYING thats what he was attempting to do!

    January 13, 2015 at 1:24 pm |
    • banasy©

      Oh, I know that, Chrissy; no worries.

      See, here's the thing: if he says something that is blatently wrong, or that I disagree with, I'm going to tell him and/or correct him.

      He doesn't have to believe it; but then, neither do I have to take his word as somehow sacrosanct.

      If he starts with the insults, they wil be dealt with.

      If he doesn't like the parameters in which I've set to converse with, he can ignore them, as he has shown in the past by doing just that.

      January 13, 2015 at 1:44 pm |
  3. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    @ KNOW that Adam thinks that because THATs what he would like to do right? He would like to be a real life terrorist, he just doesnt have the courage so he does it on the internet!

    January 13, 2015 at 1:42 pm |
  4. Adumb

    wait wait a partial listing of the over 33,000 gangs of armed and organized to do bad things Americans:

    1.) The Pis sed Off Basta rds of Bloomington
    2.) Sons of Silence

    January 13, 2015 at 4:40 pm |
  5. Philip

    LMAO. Since when did old ladies gossip in public? Don't they usually do that while watching soap operas?

    January 13, 2015 at 4:44 pm |
    • banasy©

      I think you had better reexamine that word in conjunction with your own behavior, Philip.

      The second somebody doesn't agree with you, your claws come out.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:17 pm |
  6. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Why? Is that where YOU do it @ philip? And as adam, the troll, only does his shenanigans in public, where ELSE would we discuss him? Scene of the crime is as good a place as any! And better than most! And if YOU have a problem with it, take it up with someone higher up! In other to the booty, cuz the hands off duty!!!!

    January 13, 2015 at 4:51 pm |
    • Philip

      What are you talking about. Me and Joey don't gossip about you or Donna or Bob. That's what YOU tag teamers do.

      January 13, 2015 at 4:54 pm |
      • banasy©

        Why is it acceptable for you to gossip and lie on pages and pages of blogs about us, but when we discuss your abominable behavior, it is acceptable?

        You have gossiped about JIF PLENTY of times, and you make up garbage about bobcat daily.

        You. Are. A. Hypocrite.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:05 pm |
  7. Snivler

    Adam was mean to me.

    January 13, 2015 at 4:55 pm |
  8. Comfortable Jew

    Can you believe that jerk Jesus took a whip to my banker?

    January 13, 2015 at 4:56 pm |
    • Prominant Jew

      Outrageous behavior. And he called our good and clean and holy high priest Joseph a son of the Devil. Can you believe that? Let's go find a couple of old ladies and pay them to throw rocks at him.

      January 13, 2015 at 4:57 pm |
      • Prominant Jew

        Yes. He was a problem child that's for sure. I never bothered with listening to him speaking bad about my religion. And never did bother with becoming a baptized Christian. The last thing he ever said to me was "Who really is my mother". Can you believe a bible thumper would speak to his own mother like that?

        January 13, 2015 at 5:04 pm |
      • banasy©

        Philip, Hesus would have called you on your verbal abuse of us, thinly disguised as some supposed "piety" whilst hiding behind His robes.

        You, Philip, are as far from Jesus's teachings as it possibly gets, while telling yourself that you are His follower.

        Stop it.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:08 pm |
      • Proverbial saying

        Who died and made you judge over men? A cow?

        January 13, 2015 at 5:11 pm |
      • banasy©

        Are you 8?
        What an ignorant reply.

        In case you have forgotten what hypocrite means, quite simply:

        a person who pretends to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that he or she does not actually possess, especially a person whose actions belie stated beliefs.

        Such as yours.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:23 pm |
  9. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    No but YOU do! Every chance you get!!!! Go cry to someone else. And forget we have ever talked!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:03 pm |
  10. Mary mother of Jesus

    I didn't like the way Jesus talked bad about my religion either. And never did become a baptized Christian. Do you what the last thing he ever said to me was? "Who really is my mother". And nursed that little brat for over 5 years!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:06 pm |
    • banasy©

      Probably because she was a Jew, and Christianity did not exist in Jesus's lifetime.

      Good gracious.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:16 pm |
  11. Proverbial saying

    Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:10 pm |
    • banasy©

      You are 8.

      Nobody is trying to hurt you, Philip; calling you out on your hypocrisy isn't "hurting" you.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:27 pm |
  12. Proverbial saying

    An old fat lady is an old fat lady. No matter how you look at it. Or her.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:12 pm |
    • banasy©

      Honor thy Father and thy Mother says The Lord God; the 5th Commandment.

      It is unsavory to talk about your mother so.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:31 pm |
  13. BobTM

    How do you get a Michigan girl into an elevator?

    Grease her hips, and throw in a Twinkie.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:14 pm |
  14. BobTM

    Things Men Don't Say

    - Let's watch Lifetime.

    - I don't want to go too far on the first date.

    - Yes, your sister does have bigger breasts than you.

    - Don't we owe your mother a visit?

    - Dessert goes right to my hips.

    - I hate when I miss Oprah.

    - Does this suit make me look fat?

    January 13, 2015 at 5:18 pm |
  15. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Rotflmmfao! Phoney HYPOCRITICAL azzhole!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:18 pm |
  16. BobTM

    Oprah and Airport Security

    Previous Next
    Q: Did you hear why Rosie O'Donnell got arrested?

    A: Airport security lifted up her dress and found 200 pounds of crack.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:20 pm |
  17. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    I am ALWAYS on my guard around DRUNKTARDS!!!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:21 pm |
  18. BobTM

    Q: How do you know that Keira Knightley doesn't exist?

    A: Because the camera adds 10 pounds.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:21 pm |
  19. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Fock off j a c k a s s!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:24 pm |
  20. BobTM

    Three old guys are out walking.. First one says,
    'Windy, isn't it?' Second one says, 'No, it's Thursday!'
    Third one says, 'So am I. Let's go get a beer.'

    January 13, 2015 at 5:25 pm |
  21. Donna B! :)

    I feel like my body has gotten totally out of shape, so I got my doctor's permission to join a fitness club and start exercising.
    I decided to take an aerobics class for seniors.
    I bent, twisted, gyrated, jumped up and down, and perspired for an hour.
    But, by the time I got my leotards on, the class was over.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:27 pm |
    • banasy©

      Said this Donna B, never.

      Stop trying so hard. Your "insults" are as big of a joke as you and your "piety" is.

      Deal with the fact disagreeing with you does not give you the right to break the Commandment "Thou Shall Not Lie".

      January 13, 2015 at 5:34 pm |
      • Philip

        "All men are liars and fall short of the glory of God" says your bible Donna. Grow a brain.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:37 pm |
      • banasy©

        Oh, I am glad you admitted you don't actuay follow the Bible, Philip; forevermore when I see you trying to speak of it, I'll remind you of your hypocrisy.

        Would you prefer lol, lmao, or just the short sobriquet "Hypocrite"?

        January 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm |
  22. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Ttyl @ banasy.
    Drop dead @ drunk azz philip!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:27 pm |
  23. BobTM

    Two elderly gentlemen from a retirement center were sitting on a bench under a tree when one turned to the other and said:
    'Slim, I'm 83 years old now and I'm just full of aches and pains.
    I know you're about my age. How do you feel?'
    Slim said, 'I feel just like a newborn baby."Really!? Like a newborn baby?'
    'Yep. No hair, no teeth, and I think I just wet my pants.'

    January 13, 2015 at 5:32 pm |
  24. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Forget it @ banasy...he isnt worth the time NOR the effort! I doubt AA can help his sorry azz, and hes gettin every bit as bad as that pig of a man Adam!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:33 pm |
    • Philip

      Is Adam really obese or are you just saying that.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:35 pm |
      • banasy©


        January 13, 2015 at 5:38 pm |
      • Philip

        Yes he is obese or Yes she is just saying that. Asked the wise man of the riddler.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:40 pm |
      • banasy©

        Although I think Chrissy was speaking more of his demeanor, the post I wrote to Blue Saffron that have you the vapors should answer that.

        January 13, 2015 at 5:49 pm |
  25. Philip

    Lol. I'm still at work chrissy. Sheesh. And don't take some of these jokes seriously about you. ok? lmao

    January 13, 2015 at 5:34 pm |
  26. Philip

    How is posting jokes as bad as Adam? Bobsnot does it all the time ya know.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:34 pm |
    • banasy©

      Your c/p jokes are funny; your changing the words in an attempt to insult us is juvenile.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:54 pm |
  27. Philip

    I like your new flair, chrissy. What happened to your circle c?

    January 13, 2015 at 5:36 pm |
  28. Philip

    If Bobsnot posted these jokes you two old cows would be Lol. Or moo, rather. he he

    January 13, 2015 at 5:39 pm |
    • banasy©

      Said the most profoundly ignorant ass that was ever pumped out of an old woman's 'gina.

      You insults apply to neither Chrissy nor I; perhaps you should consult the Bible for inspiration.

      January 13, 2015 at 5:57 pm |
  29. Fat Chance

    The state of what's usually called the size-acceptance movement in this country hasn't felt very encouraging to me recently. Radiance, a key voice of the movement, ceased publishing with its winter 2001 issue. Mode, which at least cautiously pushed the upper range of fashion models into size-18 territory, just folded. John Popper has become half a popper, and despite federal paper shuffling Honda still refuses to make seat belts that accommodate passengers larger than 215 pounds. A few months ago a friend had weight-loss surgery.

    January 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm |
  30. chri§§y¥¥¥¥

    Well i DONT LIKE yours!!!!! And btw i already heard Bruno Mars today so....Good night!

    January 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm |
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