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We have this big distinction in the USA – and many other countries – about structuring as a non-profit entity versus for-profit. We have to recognize, though, that we’re intermingling two quite different concepts. It’s important to not get confused.

The first concept is that a non-profit is somehow heart-centered and oriented toward unselfish benefits, while a for-profit is somehow … not? So it must be profit-centered and oriented toward selfish purposes. But we’ve grown comfortable with that distinction, even though it’s inaccurate and often wrong.

The other concept we mix with this is the tax structure and, generally, the relationship with the government. Non-profits take on extra restrictions and reporting requirements in trade for being exempt from certain kinds of taxes.

So where does this overlap lead us astray?

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