Pay It Forward

– Strephon Says 25 Pay It Forward

Strephon tackles the view of the Pay It Forward movement that the world is bad yet one can make a difference by doing acts of kindness.


This is Strephon Kaplan-Williams talking about the concept and practice of ‘paying it forward,’ originated by Catherine Ryan Hyde in her novel and the subsequent movie, Pay It Forward.

Catherine Ryan Hyde says, The Pay It Forward Movement is the real-life reaction to the release of my novel in early 2000, followed by the creation of the Pay It Forward Foundation, followed by the Warner Brothers movie. I didn’t write the novel expecting a social movement, but it’s certainly been exciting to watch it grow. Website link:

Pay It Forward means you pay back people helping you by helping new people in turn. Rather than pay back to the ones who have helped you in this life, pay it forward, says young Trevor in the novel by Catherine Ryan Hyde.Through acts of kindness a significant movement of helping people would occur. The message is: you too can do something about the conflicts and misery in the world. You too can help, can make a difference, because your acts of significant kindness can and do affect others. If you tell the people you are helping that you are helping them, not to be paid back in kind, but to contribute to a better world, then at least some of them will understand and also do at least three significant and kind things for others in need.The concept of Pay It Forward goes against the market concept of do things for others in order to get things in return.We give to get. We get and must give.

We get and must give, is the motivation, philosophically speaking, for the Pay It Forward movement that has arisen out of Catherine Ryan Hyde’s concept and movement.

Perhaps the best compromise is to use both concepts in building and living a life.

Pay it forward when you have extra time and resources. But give to get when you need to be in your reality of daily needs.

Pay It Forward is a dramatic new articulation. The concept is not new, of course. Some are motivated by this new way of putting it. More power to them, the power of consciousness and love, if at all possible.

Yet, the concept itself of paying back what you have been given is an ethical and purposeful concept and action.

Many of our acts are not paying back to the people who have given to us.

My major work in life has not been pay to get, but invest in values and the future and see what comes.

As I have been given to I give to others.

As I have received I also give.


Let’s get serious. No just helping the down and out, and not taking care of yourself and those you most relate to.

The real work starts at home and ends in the world.

Pay it forward. The love you have been given you give to others, even when you must sacrifice ego desire and need yourself.

Pay it forward. Give without needing always to get.

Pay it forward.

Give what you have the skills and power to give, and let the rest go.

Pay it forward.

Don’t meddle in people’s lives. Take on causes where there is effective chance for success. Always give people choice on how they choose to relate to what you are doing with them.

This is not a child’s universe, a homework assignment from God.

This is the real world, already created, already full of opportunity and disaster.

Give, not always to get, but give also where effectiveness is possible and the choices are right.

Give, and deal with the consequences.

Give where things can be real.

Give, not where the need is greatest, but where values and new life are most possible.

You cannot save the world, yet you can save yourself in it!


2 Responses to “Pay It Forward”

  1. 1 William Piper November 3, 2006 at 7:29 pm

    I appreciate your understanding of this concept as a whole. I too believe that reality forces us to “give to get” as a function of life. We give time and energy to get money. We give money to get food and shelter.

    Personally I believe that we must not only take care of ourselves and family, but we do owe it to others to “Pay It Forward”.

    In my life I have been a husband, a father, a soldier, a police officer and now I own a martial arts school. I am 45 and now I have more time to write.

    My take on “Pay it Forward” has been working for almost 30 years. I give to others, in good deeds and assistance, without expecting rewards most of the time. In part, for what others, in my past have done for me, without expecting of reward or gain.

    Can we not make life better for each other by simply realizing that we are all tied together by the same string we call life?

  2. 2 Strephon Kaplan-Williams November 4, 2006 at 2:54 pm

    I appreciate, William Piper, your sharing about your work and values with us here. It seems importatnt to have values and principles to live by that work in the reality of direct experience.

    From your experience and insight, what would you say we do with the opposite when we have been hurt, stolen from and mistreated?

    Or, how do we deal with the times we may be mistreated as we give to others?

    Maybe the movie did not do so well with this in having the boy die of almost an accident with the young boys who used knives.

    Revenge becomes “pay it forward” in a destructive way when we can or cannot find the real adversary who has directly wronged us. This theme is played out in certain movies and I expect in the criminal world.

    I appeal to your experience as a martial arts person and a former policeman, among other things.

    If you would like a bit of listing here where you can be reached, please feel free to give us the information to post.

    I know from my own martial arts background some students are looking for the “inner person” behind the techniques, so as to develop their core selves and life perspective.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog Stats

  • 55,059 hits

Wisdom Podcasts by Strephon Kaplan-Williams © 2006

Copyright Notice To link to any of our podcasts or print, please include the following statement "Wisdom Podcasts copyright Strephon Kaplan-Williams - for personal use only"

Contact us

Stefania Marian, site administrator email:


July 2006
« Jun   Aug »

Top Clicks

  • None

%d bloggers like this: