'Charity' Money - Integrity
Indeed, it is very disheartening to learn about cases of misappropriation of funds committed by some trusted leaders of
non-profit organizations(NPOs). While discussing this subject with my mentor one morning, I realized how much
money can easily be pocketed by dishonest and mercenary people when donations are received from anonymous Samaritans,
especially in NPOs which do not enforce effective internal control procedures over the collection of donations from members
of the public.
I feel that some religious human beings can also err sometimes, yet nobody wants to expose their flaws due to special
reasons. For example, I (a free-thinker) was once told that in the teachings of Buddhism, the followers must not
criticise their religious leaders even when the latter's conduct appears questionable. It is believed that they will be
punished for the sins that they have committed sooner or later.
I feel that a righteous person should be discerning in pointing out questionable matters and make rectifications
immediately. Such timely action will put things on the right track and ensure that all resources are appropriately
deployed in support of a good cause.
I would like to share the message behind the painting shown below (work of a respectable local artist, Mr Loy Chye Chuan).
In this painting, the tree was planted to provide shade for the house. As years go by, it started to grow 'waywardly' -
damaging the wall. However its owner did nothing to prevent it from damaging the premises further because it was still
providing shade for the house. As a result, it became more 'ambitious and greedy' and went on to expand its 'territory'
onto the public walkway. Soon, this damage to the road became obvious to the pedestrians who stumbled over the root of this
'wayward' tree. Although its owner had tolerated its greed but the righteous pedestrians fought for justice to be brought
upon such 'immoral act and behaviour'. The final verdict was for the tree to be uprooted in order to restore the road
to its pristine condition so as to serve the people well.
Hopefully, this analogy will help to remind all of us to remove the 'wayward' tree if it begins to grow
out of control in order to prevent further damage to its surroundings.