Dilemma of conscience

Dilemma of conscience

I am always confused about what to do when I see a street child or a handicapped beggar. There is a part of me that says I should help the needy, but then I think, am I promoting begging as an easy means of earning, by giving in? In fact, if I gave money, wouldn’t I be promoting supporting the gangs which push thousands of innocent children into this business every year? I am torn by conscience which has now become an easy excuse to do nothing, which is what the selfish part of me probably wants. Countless people walk past beggars feeling irritated that their gaze must fall upon the wretched of the earth. How much more pleasant if we could just ignore them? The pang of conscience is a saving grace for me and has had me atleast thinking in that direction. One will find; if one decides to act on better nature, that the answers to my dilemma are quite simple. If I think my help (alms) might be stolen/misused, take the child to a meal or buy her new clothes. Make contact and do something that is of direct benefit. If I lack the time for a kind gesture (I hope this isn’t true), give money to charitable agencies (cheque book philanthropy is the new adage that has been coined for this act) by picking the one that I trust. Having said that; the best thing to do is to build a relationship with an individual (here street child) or an organization to understand the ‘real’ need, it always may not be just money. I believe that one can do the most for another through human contact – That is where hope is born, not in a rupee casually tossed as you walk on your way.

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