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Find ways to integrate your interests and skills with the needs of others. Be proactive, not reactive. We have all felt the dread that comes from being cajoled into giving, such as when friends ask us to donate to their fundraisers. In these cases, we are more likely to give to avoid humiliation rather than out of generosity and concern. Instead we should set aside time, think about our options, and find the best charity for our values. If we gave only to get something back each time we gave, what a dreadful, opportunistic world this would be! Yet if we are feeling guilt-tripped into giving, chances are we will not be very committed over time to the cause.

The key is to find the approach that fits us. When we do, then the more we give, the more we stand to gain purpose, meaning and happiness—all of the things that we look for in life but are so hard to find.

India Tomorrow: Short Film "OTHERS"

Jenny Santi. For it is in giving that we receive — Saint Francis of Assisi The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity — Leo Tolstoy We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give — Winston Churchill Making money is a happiness; making other people happy is a superhappiness — Nobel Peace Prize receipient Muhammad Yunus Giving back is as good for you as it is for those you are helping, because giving gives you purpose.

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The Secret to Happiness Is Helping Others

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Your California Privacy Rights. The original version of this essay, submitted in early August, is largely here, within the edges of this one. You have already read most of it, though its tone is now a little different. Moser and I had not set up a schedule for working on the translation as editor and translator, and at no time prior to the attempted firing did we do any work together on the manuscript.

My gut told me I had to dig deeper. Edwards cites several examples of the similarities between the two biographies, highlighted by Brazilian literary critics. Susan did not begin school until September Generously, one could call these rhymes:. Sontag was buried at Montparnasse.

The black slab covering her remains grew into one of the most visited destinations in a cemetery packed with the illustrious dead. The author was being laid to rest in that world of the intellect she had longed to be a part of since her earliest childhood in the bleak desert landscape of Arizona. Not far from the graves of Samuel Beckett, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Simone de Beauvoir, Sontag was buried where devotees of post-war intellectual life could now also visit her grave.

So: what now? However, the book itself remains valuable — provided one reads it skeptically and weighs its claims carefully. This is why Sontag — as both image and writer — is more relevant fifteen years after her death than she was at the height of her fame. This is why, as frustrating as it is to wonder how a more careful and interested scholar would have handled the material, an official biography of Susan Sontag is nonetheless an event to be celebrated. At the same time, essays on Sontag are appearing in most major literary publications.

One has to believe this is introducing Sontag to new readers, some of whom may take it upon themselves to complete more self-effacing, faithful research.

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Even so, we are having conversations about one of the most exciting writers of the 20th Century at a moment when we badly need her perspective, and new readers will be lucky to have her. Few writers are able to stimulate critical thought, to ignite the dissenting imagination, the way she can. Never so directly did she address this than in On Photography , her most important and — forty-two years after its publication — most contemporary book.

It needs to furnish vast amounts of entertainment in order to stimulate buying and anesthetize the injuries of class, race, and sex.

Understanding is based on how [something] functions. And functioning takes place in time, and must be explained in time. Only that which narrates can make us understand. So flattened, each loses its meaning.

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Photography, as a democratization of seeing — giving equal attention and compassion to a burn victim and the shadow beneath a park bench — empties subjects of their meanings. So isolated, they do not narrate. They mean nothing. Reading On Photography in is important not merely because humankind will upload nearly two trillion photographs in , but because our primary day-to-day experience with each other as human beings has been shattered into an ongoing incoherence of images.

In short, we have learned to present ourselves as images, to see one another as images. As images, any pretense of meaning vanishes from our lives. In this capitalism-of-seeing, we rob ourselves of the consciousness that human beings exist continuously in time, and that our beliefs, opinions, desires, and deeds shift accordingly. Sontag has already given us the framework for thinking about these problems, and for imagining our way out of them.

Some writers — Teju Cole, Ariella Azoulay, Sarah Sentilles, and many more — have engaged with her work on this subject. The latter word evokes a lapse of time, which encourages the spectator to remember that, despite its brief exposure — often a fraction of a second — the photograph remains a little slice of time; for the subject there was time before the photograph, and — except in the direst cases — time afterward.

Willfully placing oneself in a viewership in time is a more ethical way of seeing than focusing on the instantaneity of an image. So, for that matter, is remembering that every image of a person you encounter, no matter how flat or reduced or airbrushed , is another human being existing in time, complete with aspirations, faults, guilt, talents, loneliness, and terror. To one caller, concerned over George W. To try to make a fresh way of talking at the most serious, ardent, and enthusiastic level, heading off the religious encapsulation, is one of the primary intellectual tasks of future thought.

A piece of pornographic fiction concocts no better than a crude excuse for a beginning; and once having begun, it goes on and on and ends nowhere. Even though things do happen, really nothing happens. Everything is repeated again and again and again.



We believe in the reality of death. This is especially pertinent under the current presidential administration, whose ongoing spectacle, amplified and magnified by social media, leaves its audience both incredulous and numb.

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Despite the daily threat of apocalypse, each of those days is almost identical to any other.