Giving it All Away

Sometimes I get inspiration from strange places.  Like the “Readers Digest”, for example.  This month’s issue has a small story about an Austrian millionaire named Karl Rabeder.  Karl Rabeder is a housewares magnate in Austria who is giving away his entire fortune, his vacation home, his yacht, his villa (worth more than $2 million) to help the needy in Central and South America.  His non-profit, MyMicroCredit, matches prospective micro-investors with projects in developing countries.

What would it feel like to give it all away?  Could we sell everything we own; our business, our home, the old camper, our two trucks and find a nice shack somewhere?  Could we take all that money (admittedly much less than Herr Rabeder’s fortune) and send it to some  foreign land to help another family?  To help a village?

I would like to know what that feels like.  I would like to experience that feeling of being unburdened.  To the extent that you don’t have to worry about a new water heater and the grass needs mowing.  The truck is overdue for an oil change by 3,000 miles and the camper needs to be winterized.  Oh, and the money you got for selling these annoyances?  It built a bakery in Peru and helps feed a small village as well as teaches local residents a skill.

Karl Rabeder says that there is a saying in German: “Simple people have happy lives”.  I don’t think that is necessarily true, but it would be fun to find out, wouldn’t it?

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2 responses to “Giving it All Away

  1. Well….I’m betting ol’ Karl is keeping enough of his dough to live out the rest of his days in some kind of comfort, but, yes, I’d like to know what that feels like. I think, though, that those of us that don’t have the means to do what Karl did make just as much of an impact by giving of our time, our services (like cleaning for cancer or cleaning for heroes), or our private donations of $5.00 or $10.00 here or there.

    Great thought provoking post, Mike, as always!

    • Actually, Deb, Karl found himself what the article described as “a compact wooden hut in the Alps”.
      You are right, our gifts, whatever they may be, can give us the same feeling as Karl has, albeit on a smaller scale.

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