Dr. Aniruddha Malpani writes something that we all need to think deeply about:
I am an IVF specialist, but I also run a free patient education library in Bombay. This is called: HELP – the Health Education Library for People, and has now become one of the world’s largest consumer health library.
This is a free service we provide, because we believe in Information Therapy and that patients need access to information, so they can get the best medical care for themselves, in partnership with their doctor. We spend a lot of money on running the library ( space rental, books, staff salaries, electricity and so on) and a question many people ask us is – Why do you do this ? What do you get out of it ? Everyone feels we must be having a vested interest, and they simply cannot figure out what it is !
I am surprised at how naive they are. There is so much pleasure in doing good and helping someone else with no vested interest ! Isn’t that what life is for ? All religions teach the same thing – do good to others – so why can’t we put it into practise in our own lives ?
I am financially well off, so why shouldn’t I put my money to good use now in my own lifetime rather than donate it to some charity after I am dead and gone ?
And why should I wait to do good after I have retired ? I live by the philosophy, “Live Rich, Die Broke”. Sure, I don’t drive a Mercedes, but why do I need to ? One of my friends asked – What’s your ROI ( return on investment) ? All I can say is that the emotional income I get is incomparable !
It’s sometimes hard to explain to others why we run HELP, and I used to do my best in the past to do so. Now I just feel sorry for them, in that they have not experienced the pleasure which comes from giving to others with no axe to grind.