Sunday, January 19, 2014

A Study In Generosity At The University Of BC

BESIDES LEARNING why they need umbrellas in Vancouver, students at the University of British Columbia delve into a treasure trove of knowledge they hope to one day share with the world. Perhaps they will also learn that although the brain tops the list of subjects begging for innovative thinking it takes heart to make the needed research happen ... and a generous spirt.

The Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health at UBC shows an artistic impression of brain cells etched in the glass. Understanding of the brain is in its infancy as is the newly constructed building I visited with my husband who is dealing with a neurological condition that began over two years ago.

We were impressed with the nearly 135,00 square foot scope of the facility largely made possible by Mowafaghiana, a longtime philanthropist of humble beginnings who learned lessons in generosity early from his mother.

His desire to bring all the multidisciplinary areas of brain health under one large umbrella was triggered more recently after he suffered a stroke. This unfortunate health crisis turned out to be fortunate for those with various movement and other disorders seeking answers now and into the future.

How often have you heard about someone down and out who would give you the shirt off his back? Generosity is not exclusive to the rich but when there is little to lose perhaps it is easier to give than when wealth accumulates?

No so for 87-year-old Mowafaghiana who went from being bankrupt to gaining and giving away millions. He no doubt would agree with Albert Pike who said, "What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."

Of course giving is not only about dropping some loose change in a panhandler's cup or constructing big buildings. Sharing time, talents and non-monetary acts of goodness also have ripple effects.

Visit Postcards From Penelope Puddle to view more BC scenes.

To see more sights from around the globe visit Our World at the sidebar.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

16 comments:

  1. Thank you for introducing such a great philanthropist like Mowafaghiana and the words by Albert Pike. The architecture is so beautiful with the etched glass. I remembered the words, “It is disgraceful to die rich” by the business tycoon. Such a good philosophy is not limited to the wealthy people only. There are people who give or share what little things they have. If people are a little more generous, this world would be better off.

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  2. Nice to know that there are generous people out there to help out. Great post!

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  3. A generous spirit is a gift. I'm positive that people who give of their time, money or talent are much happier than those who don't...if they give for the right reasons.

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  4. A marvelous post! I have never heard of this generous philanthropist and to give back as he did is tremendous. Thank you for bringing this to our attention, a generosity of spirit is so important in not only helping others, which is paramount, of course but it can do so much for one's own well being, as EG says, if given for the right reasons.

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  5. Fascinating post. I love how you started with the umbrella shot. Great to know about the generosity.

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  6. Mowafaghiana sounds like an extraordinary person. And very generous. I think acts of goodness makes oneself feel good. I wish you husband well! Great post, thank you for sharing.

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  7. interesting story and I love the pattern on the windows. Striking. :)

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  8. It looks like his generosity will benefit so many.

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  9. Wonderful photos. I love the architecture. Hope all is going well for your husband.

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  10. Such generosity and a gorgeous building too.

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  11. All of us who have more than we need should think about giving - I think its an important thing to do.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  12. Thank you for sharing both wise words and your lovely pictures. Some people just stand out as wonderfull people :)

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  13. What a beautiful building, and philanthropy is indeed a high calling. Best wishes to your husband.

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  14. Thank you for this great post. I especially like Albert Pike's quote! Your photos are brilliant!
    Wil, ABCW Team

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  15. I always am happy to see how people give back in such a wonderful way. Great photos!

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  16. It was a delight to see your name pop up on my comment page! I've missed you in my time offline and am glad to be back in the swing of things.

    This is a wonderful post, the kind that reminds us of all that's good about being human, and of what's inside each of us waiting to be shared. Thank you for that...:)

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