Is there a difference between “greed” and “self-preservation”? There is, but the line is almost gray somewhere in the middle. Say, for example, you are at a grocery store with your kids and as you’re leaving, someone approaches you and asks you for money. If you decline to help them, regardless of having money left over, are you stingy?
But now, let’s say you are leaving a fine restaurant, with your significant other, and a woman with two children is seen setting up camp on a park bench. What then? Should they be left there without another thought of them the rest of the day, or when a news broadcast announces their deaths that evening, due to unexpected drops in temperature, are they remembered too late?
These two circumstances vary tremendously from each other. Noone should never to give money to someone who is asking for it. There are a few phrases that come to mind, “Easy come, easy go” and “You can give a man a fish and let him eat for a day, or teach him to fish and let him eat for a lifetime.” The second person, the woman with the children, should not be given money either. She should be given something more, something lasting–references to clinics or shelters, a job, (not in the home and not necessarily by the charitable person) that can provide longevity.
When someone isn’t aware of greed until it rears it’s ugly head, it may be too late. Sometimes greed can get the better of us before we know it! “Greed” is an ugly word that means something equally as ugly. Dictionary.com defines it as- excessive or rapacious desire, esp. for wealth or possessions. In other words, when someone has what they need to sustain themselves and save a bit, they should dedicate the rest to helping others. Again, not supporting others as noted here, in Tunisia.
Here is an article pertaining to our own country that captures this Deadly Sin hands down. Greed can sneak up on people and turn them against each other whether lovers, spouses, co-workers, or even greedy parents. This battle is an ongoing battle that will not end until someone is erased from the canvas.
The ironic portion of the word “greed” is that when not concerned with “self-preservation,” this only becomes second to getting what we want.