Susan Jacoby has a wonderful explanation of why the religious give more to charity than the non-religious — and how we can change that:
The real giving difference between secularists and regular churchgoers comes from the fact that going to church establishes the habit of giving — not only because of moral exhortations from the pulpit, but also because of social reinforcement from peers .
It does take conscious personal effort to make giving a habit rather than an undependable, occasional act. But all I have to say to other secularists is: Try it, you’ll like it. And since the proportion of secularists and the religiously unaffiliated is growing steadily in this country, the real point is that our fellow citizens, as well as people around the world, need our help.
Speaking from experience, she’s absolutely right.
I thought giving $5/month was a lot of money when I was in college… but once I started doing it, it just became a regular habit.
Now, I give more than that, to more than one organization, and it’s so easy to do. And I feel great doing it. I just had to get over the hump of giving the first time.
If you’re looking for a place to start, please consider giving money to a variety of charities via Foundation Beyond Belief. It was created with non-theists like us in mind.
(via The Daily Dish)