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Understanding Philanthropy Through Some Of The Most Generous Philanthropists In America

by | Philanthropy

Those who give generously receive more, but those who are stingy
with what is appropriate will grow needy. – Proverbs 11:24

What would you do if you suddenly gained an insurmountable amount of wealth? To start an extravagant lifestyle is probably one of the first things to come to mind. You may even get overwhelmed thinking about all the things you can buy and all the places you can visit. However, a look inside the lives of the richest and most successful people in America may prompt you to give a different answer. 

The likes of Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg are known to lead frugal lifestyles. Moreover, they have also pledged to dedicate a huge portion of their wealth to charity. Some people may find their actions confusing and unbelievable. Yet, on second thought, their generous actions teach us the importance of giving back. To make an effort for philanthropy despite everything they achieved also shows that earning money should not be the lone and ultimate goal of any endeavor. Philanthropy may be a vague concept for some but looking at the quotes uttered by some of the most generous givers in America can help us get a clear notion of it:

Philanthropy gives us purpose.

The Scottish American who is known for the expansion of the American steel industry during the 1900s left a beautiful quote about philanthropy. He said, “No man can become rich without himself enriching others,The man who dies rich dies disgraced.” This teaches us that real wealth is the reward that comes from doing something good for others. To know that your generous deeds are helping others also give purpose in life. 

Philanthropy is a social responsibility.

Warren Buffett once said, “If you’re in the luckiest 1 percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.“ This quote from the business magnate stresses the concept that much is expected of those who are given more. The billionaire also teaches us how to responsibly use wealth – which is to make a positive difference in the lives of others.

Philanthropy requires effort and commitment.

According to  Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, “Effective philanthropy requires a lot of time and creativity – the same kind of focus and skills that building a business requires.” This quote teaches us that philanthropy is a long-term commitment. You cannot simply give money and forget about it. Instead, you invest time and effort into it because you want to get to the root of the problem and offer concrete solutions. 

Philanthropy should be used to make a difference. 

Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, has this to say about philanthropy,  “Our society has an obligation to invest now to improve the lives of all those coming into this world, not just those already here.” The quote implies that philanthropy is essential to make our world a better place. It also says that engaging in altruism is a gift to the future generation. 

Philanthropy is never exclusive for the wealthy and privileged.  Yet the examples shown by some of the most generous philanthropists in America prove that you can only understand the true value of money by sharing it with others. 

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