I also want to be able to offer what I have to everyone, not just those with excess money. The world is set up such that those with money and other advantages can get what they need, and those without cannot. I don't want my work to be a part of that system.
The most important reason, however, is this, that our relationship with money is a spiritual issue. People tend to suffer a lot over money: if something involves money people will generally believe whatever conditioning says about it. If I charged a fee then people would not be required to look at their relationship with money; if I don't then they do, for as along as our relationship lasts.
We need to bring our practice of attention and awareness to our relationship with money just as much as anything else. I want every aspect of my conversations with people to support awareness practice, in other words, and that includes the way in which people go about giving back from what they have received from me. In addition, I see it as important for spiritual health and human happiness that we all we give from what we receive. To take without giving is one of the diseases within conditioned mind, and as such it leads to dissatisfaction and unhappiness.
It is for this reason that I ask everyone to give in accordance with what they have. Those who have little money may give little, and those with more can give more. It is also for this reason that I feel I must bring it to people's attention if it becomes evident that they have ceased to give. I see it as a part of my job to provide accountability here as I would for any other spiritual issue. I hope you will understand that I do this not because I'm trying to get more money out of people, but because I care about their health and well-being.
This work is my livelihood and also the passion of my life, and if people do not support me then I cannot do it. My request is that you give generously--whatever that means to you. You might consider that there is a "correct" amount to give. To give more than you can afford is an unkindness to you. To give less than your heart says to give is also an unkindness to you. There is an amount that is good and appropriate. Said in another way: give more than conditioned mind says you can, and less than it says you should. In this way you may practice a compassionate relationship with money and generosity.
Thank you so very much for everything you give--in terms of donations, yes, but even more in terms of the work you are doing to end suffering. From my point of view, this work is the most generous thing we can do, both for ourselves and for the whole world. Thank you for the support you give to me, and thank you for sharing yourself with me and inviting me to be a part of your life. The work I do to support others supports me in my life and my practice, and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity.
Take good care of yourself, and be well.