Money is word which can upset our breathing pattern.
We react with intense emotion in money related issues. From the time we were kids, money has been the pivot around which our lives have revolved. Directly or indirectly, money is a cause for most of the argument and negative emotion within a family. We grow up feeling uptight about it… we are on edge when money issues crop up.
Our reaction to money-related issues is a result of our childhood conditioning. Financial maturity and freedom will remain a dream until the stranglehold of this conditioning is broken. To different people, money means different things. Some covet it lustfully, some are eternally frustrated by the way it eludes their grasp and yet some are indifferent to it. The indifference might be real or pretended.
Money is a tool for trade. It can give us the means to satisfy our desires, but it cannot give us the desire. Money will not buy intelligence for a fool, admiration for a coward or respect for the incompetent. The man who uses money as a benchmark to judge the merits of the people he deals with, will perpetually be insecure. He is not only judging others on the basis of money, but himself also- whether he realizes it or not. The men of intelligence will desert him, but cheats and frauds will come flocking to him; just as they flock to any man whose stature is smaller than that of his money.
The feeling of insecurity about money manifests itself in different ways in different people. No matter who they are, what their particular circumstance or status in life, they have one thing in common. They all worship money. They treat money as a static entity. They believe money is supposed to be picked and pocketed, to be looted, to be cheated and gathered up. There is an immense irrationality in their mind associated with money. They have never discovered that money is not a rootless, causeless thing with its own whims and fancies. They don’t want to admit that there is logic governing its flow. They don’t take the trouble to understand the reasons for the flow and prefer to jut their chin out and rely on having the mind-set of a thug with a gun.
A man of inherited wealth who is insecure about his wealth, knows that if by some mischance he were to lose his fortune, he will not be able to create another. He knows he does not have the ability to create a fortune from scratch. His wealth has been handed down to him- probably from another such incompetent- and so must be treated with awe and dread. Such a man has never understood that the root of money is production. Production is made possible by men of ability– which he is not. To men like him, wealth has a mystical quality as if it has a will of its own and can come and go as it pleases. He worships his money in a groveling effort to placate it, trying to make it stay with him.
To a man earning through a position he has attained by pull or fraud, this dread is equally real. He too knows that he has no right to his pay cheque because the service he provides is of poor quality. There is nothing he is does, no service he provides, which cannot be provided by hundreds of other people. He knows he is dispensable. He holds his job only through the stupidity or lethargy of his employer. He develops the mind-set of a con-man since his game can only continue this way. Such a man too will worship his money , terrified it will leave him any day.
The businessman, who cheats in business, knows that the money belongs to him only as long as a bigger, more ruthless cheat does not come along, or till the buyer remains blind to his sharp practices. He does not earn his money in honest trade and the customer may walk off any moment. He develops the mentality of a fly-by-night operator and runs his business in a hit-and-hide style. He knows his source of money is transitory. He too worships his money.
A man whose ability is greater than the inherited wealth, salary or business turnover he earns, is not afraid. If he loses his fortune, he can start afresh and create another. If he loses his job, there will be plenty of others eager to employ him. Such men don’t have job security, but they do have employment security. Just as there are men of lesser ability, dreading the loss of their livelihood, so also are there men of great ability whose work is not receiving just reward. But such people need not lose heart. The money belongs to them and will come to them sooner or later. It is an unalterable law of the universe.
Meanwhile, such men need to develop their ability to handle the deluge when it starts to pour in. They must not allow the delay to embitter them. The biggest pain for men of high ability is to see mediocrity shoot up as if on wings and to see their own efforts bring them nothing but more pain and more struggle. If only they could look into the heart of the mediocre shooting past, they would find that he is petrified. He is not able to understand his own success and is so deep down he is afraid of men of ability. They have a confident, serene right to their money that he can never experience. He is not to be envied; he’s to be pitied.
An ethical businessman knows the value of his trade and the integrity of his dealing. He provides value for money to his buyers and thus creates a loyal customer base. He understands well that acquiring a new customer takes more effort than keeping an old one. He also understands that if he cheats his customers, sooner or later they will find out and he will lose their custom. For an ethical businessman, money will never be a cause for concern. They understand and respect money- and money respects them.
In the silence of your soul, you know which of these categories you belong to. Perhaps you are forcing yourself to adjust with a constant discomfort over money. The only thing that can bring you out of this discomfort would be the integrity of your assessment and your determination to pull yourself out of this disempowered state. Hanging on to irrational, inaccurate and emotionally-driven beliefs has never helped anyone. It wasn’t helping me either, so I let go of those beliefs. I will not say my money troubles are over… but at least they are one step closer to getting to a desirable state.
The state where the taste of money is so sweet…!
Written on 13th Oct 2007
The Sweet Taste of Money