This has helped me keep in mind that the spirit in which I give is far more important than the gift itself, or the amount. If I give a gift of 100% of my income without love, it would be better to give something far less for which I can feel a radiating love. I have applied this idea successfully to my giving practice, starting with an amount that I could truly and joyfully set free and then building upon that practice. The result has been that over time I developed a habit of giving I can feel good about, starting from that beginning point of giving just a little, and over time working up to asubstantial amount. This process has helped me carefully examine the atmosphere in which I was giving and it has guided me to clarity about my intentions. I have discovered there is a difference between giving for the joy of giving, and giving with a hidden motive to control or influence. When I notice in my thought that I want anything at all in return for a gift, I call that a deal, or trade.