Picture This: You Walk Into A Restaurant. Eat. Get A Bill For $0.

Chie Davis Curated by

"It's better to give than to receive." If that idea sounds like an overly optimistic load of hippie-dippie foolishness, you may never have eaten at an incredible place like this.

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Narrator: Welcome to Karma Kitchen. Have you guys been here before? No? Here we run it as an experiment in generosity. We often look for the value in terms of price, but here, there's no price. So how do you value something that doesn't have a price?

Every Sunday, a bunch of volunteers will take our restaurant. For so many people, it's the first time they've done anything hands-on in a restaurant. They show up with this understanding that they want to practice generosity. Someone before you has paid for your meal. You don't know them, and then at the end of your meal, you get to pay forward for people after you.

Well, today, inside the restaurant, we'll have three zones with volunteers. We essentially rent the place, give the restaurant $750. They give us the food, they give us the space, and then we operate it in the way we want. But it's not $750. What is the price of people volunteering on a Sunday? What is the price of connecting with those before you? What is the value of all that? That's the fundamental purpose of Karma Kitchen, to allow people to experience that and see where they want to go with it.

When we started in 2007, we didn't have a plan of how long it's going to continue. It went on for 27,000 meals, and it's every week. If this Sunday everyone comes in, and they decide we don't want to pay, then it stops. There is no plan B.

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There's something that happens when you walk into a restaurant, and you see the whole place and you realize no one is paying for themselves. Everyone is paying for each other. It's something that you recognize, something that you want to be a part of.

Karma Kitchen gives you a place to experiment with your own empathy. You don't have to really deeply feel connected to someone before you or someone after you or those in the restaurant or those serving you, but you can.

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At first I thought that a restaurant like this could only exist in my dreams, right down the street from world peace — ha! I actually found it here on the Global Oneness Project YouTube channel. To keep the generosity train going, volunteer or grab a bite at Karma Kitchen near you. You can also follow their feel-good messages and learn more about their “pay it forward” philosophy on Twitter and Facebook.

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