I have done this giving quietly – because I have long believed that charitable giving is a personal and private matter.
I recently read an article about the choices Mr. Ellison has made, concerning his personal spending. The question has come across, as to why, Mr. Ellison chooses to buy an Island, the boats, the houses, the cars and anything else that he fancies rather than helping others?
We all know about his wonderful gesture to give 95% of his fortune to The Giving Pledge.. But the quote, that he so perfectly worded, states his deep desire to keep his giving private; the media drools over the great expenditures of the mighty and well-off… One must really work at being acknowledge for their giving, but yet if they spend a penny more on popcorn its front page news.
Mr. Ellison has been portrayed as a businessman, who works to fill his own needs and has absolutely no care for anyone other than himself… A harsh man with an even colder heart, but behind the silk curtains, he is a man that cares about the health of others, the economic situations that others may be having to endure… His cause is to help with both hands stretch out, giving as much as he takes and again he does it quietly and he doesn’t let his left hand know what his right hand has done. He is a man of stature and regardless of his giving, he has earned the life he lives, and he has the right to indulge in his heart’s desires.
One day, he is the hero of technology and the next day because his idea didn’t work out as he planned, he is called overly arrogant and that Oracle is no longer worth the investment; he is delicately place on a pedestal of adoration and respect and then has the cushion ripped from beneath him, to give to another leader of ideas. Our loyalty is circumstantial and easily given to another, like a prostitute with a shekel.
Steve Jobs, Alberta Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Socrates, Plato, Alexander the Great.. the list can go on forever of great men of history, that had the divine gifts of seeing things not in the confinements of one dimension or even two but in three and four dimensions. Men who saw a truth, a possibly where it was profoundly hidden and embarked on presenting it to the world; endless and endless attempts came short to how they wished the outcome would be, but they stand in the reason of our thinking of today, proud and respected and most important remembered for daring to try, for the beautiful view only their minds got to see.
I will continue to write about Mr. Ellison.. for no other reason than the utmost respect for him as human being.. If he sold potatoes and earned 24¢ by the bag, I would still write about him… Why? No, not for personal or romantic interest, but when you see a man develop in cruel circumstances and still remain as genuine and kind as he, you must acknowledge the moral strength he possesses.
He once said during an interview
“I don’t attribute very much about my life, my personality to my adoption, I do attribute it an awful lot to my relationship with my father; who was a Russian immigrant, who came here, was very very poor; dearly loved this country as only an immigrant can, loved our government as only a immigrant can. He was a pilot in World War II; bomber pilot, he really had the philosophy “My country right or wrong”. He never questioned the government policies, never questioned authority, and didn’t really want me to question authority. I had some teachers, when I was very very young that were telling me things that I thought were untrue and when I tried to ask questions, they basically wanted me to parrot back what they said, they weren’t really interested in the discourse with a child, or debate with a child. They said this was true and you are smart if you can repeat it back to me exactly what I said to you. And I had a problem with that as well.. so I had very strong authoritarian figures both in school and at home which served as wonderful examples of what not to be
He took charge of his life, he became his own inspiration and dared to challenge the great man within himself, in spite of the people who wished to keep him under their thumb of control. He saw error and fought to keep himself from walking in the same footsteps. A man who can do that.. is so much more than a brand name product, a company, and specially more than a wallet… People think the only reason Mr. Ellison is worthy of any form of respect is for money, but they are missing out to see his real truth.
Its like architecture.. When its in the building process, you see tall metal pillars, a dug out landscape, a mess.. its not until its completely finished and esthetically pleasing to the eye, that people look at the creative design in awe. People are more fascinated by the décor and finished product, than the internal messy foundation that holds that masterpiece solid and steady. People can’t appreciate the building process, the self-digging, the self building, the painful disassembly of every flawed trait to rise to a magnificent structure of self architecture. Mr. Ellison with his charitable heart, that works behind closed doors to better the life of others, is that building that stands taller than all the rest, see miles of distance from soaring heights, a building that on the foggiest of days seems to still sparkle, embraces the clouds of impossibilities. So as to what his choices are, we know only what the media wishes to speak about and remain illiterate when it comes to his hidden goodness.
Mr. Ellison has proven he is the architect of his own destiny.