Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.

What did C.S. Lewis mean by:

Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.


“Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours” is a profound statement that invites us to reconsider our understanding of ownership and possession. On the surface, it seems counterintuitive. After all, isn’t something ours because we have it, hold it, and control it? However, the quote suggests a deeper, more spiritual understanding of possession.

The quote proposes that true ownership comes from the act of giving. When we give something away, we are not losing it, but rather, we are expressing our freedom and power over the thing. We show that we are not bound or defined by it. Hence, we truly own it because it does not own us. It is a paradoxical concept that challenges the traditional materialistic perspective of ownership.

Applying this idea to personal development, it’s about cultivating a generous spirit and learning to let go. In giving, we grow. We free ourselves from the attachments and dependencies on material possessions. It encourages us to focus on the intangibles like love, kindness, and wisdom which can be shared infinitely without being depleted.

In today’s world, this idea is very relevant. We live in a consumer-driven society where the accumulation of material goods often defines success. However, this quote urges us to redefine success not by what we accumulate, but by what we give away. It challenges us to shift from a mindset of scarcity, where we must hold onto things out of fear of not having enough, to a mindset of abundance, where we recognize that giving does not decrease what we have but enriches us in more profound ways.

Moreover, in an era where social and economic inequalities are rampant, this quote is a call to action. It reminds us that in giving, we not only affirm our humanity but also contribute to a more equitable and compassionate world.

In conclusion, this quote is a powerful reminder that true possession lies not in accumulation but in generosity. It invites us to redefine our understanding of success and wealth, urging us to see that in giving, we truly receive.

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