Charity, Duty of

Charity is the act of giving something of value, usually money, physical property, or time, to a worthy cause or to a person or people in need. Generally, charity is extended to those whom the giver views as less fortunate or those whose cause the individual considers worthy of receiving charity. People living in chronic poverty, suffering from disease, abuse, or other misfortune, and victims of crime or natural disaster are sometimes viewed as especially deserving of charity.

Some social theories posit that the duty of charity is part of the social contract that allows individuals to live together in relative harmony. Each person helps others in times of adversity, knowing that their good deeds will be reciprocated when, or if, necessary. At a minimum, the ...

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