Thursday, May 28, 2009

In Praisse of "Anonymous"

In Praise of "Anonymous"

To paraphrase a popular slogan addressing the difficulties women have had in getting recognition (especially in publishing), "Anonymous Was a Donor".

In Jewish tradition, the ultimate form of charity is an anonymous donor supporting an anonymous recipient. According to Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, the 18th Century Italian kabbalist and author of Mesilat Yesharim (translated into English as The Path of the Just), "Anything that is an essential part of the mitzvah [good deed / commandment, such as giving charity] must be performed, despite any mockery, while what is not essential, and causes derision and sarcasm, should not be performed."

In short, “Just Do it!” This Holy Beggar adds, “Please!

The model has its pros and cons.

On the recipient's end, the most common pro is that anonymity shields one from potential shame that help is needed, that things are tough. Maybe I didn't put out full effort in the right direction, ...

But, given today's economy, and the fact that I still have no job due to being laid-off in a corporate nonprofit merger, I can speak personally from the Dept. of HELP! I am trying very hard to find a new job. Shame is not am operative, rather it is pure confusion and deep need. I can’t deal with folks telling me that I am “over qualified”. I rather would like to present myself as “value-added”.

Still, this Holy Beggar would like to know whom to thank when my ship comes in, even if it is "Ms. Anonymous".

Especially if it is "anonymous"! This way I can thank everyone. Doing so has a shotgun effect of sharing my good fortune. It puts everyone into a mode of engaged compassion. WE help US!

I can’t wait to thank you, whomever you are!

No Matter What, Don't Forget to Ask for the Money!

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