A Short Note on Money

Let me start by saying that money is a wonderful thing. It fulfills three practical areas of our life: physical freedom, security and comfort. But what should have only been a ticket to a better life, has become life’s biggest fixation. I was born in a middle-class family where money was given importance but in a reverential way. So it had to be earned honestly and by acquiring a qualification. If money slipped and fell to the ground, it had to be picked up respectfully. Money was clearly equated to success and we didn’t think twice before labeling someone successful if they were rich. Rich kids were subtly favored in school and their lifestyles, discussed at home with some awe. Naturally, the regular people in my life, whether family or friends, aimed for successful careers to become rich. And so they did. I, on the other hand, wanted love. So I married.

My husband and I had trouble with our families and so had to start life from scratch. We got ourselves jobs and we put our heads down and slogged it out. We lived in a tiny servant’s room that was converted into a paying guest accommodation and we ate in a government canteen. The hardship was incredible. Luckily, we excelled at what we did which helped us scale that basket of plenty Indian crabs. Later, we learnt that money kept the crabs at bay too.

Some money in the bank is a good thing especially in countries like India. Otherwise, life can become too hard to bear. But if there was one thing that stuck with us from the nature of our hardship, it was the realization that money could never become a priority over life itself. And by that, I mean, we had understood quite clearly right at the start, that life was not money. Life was a responsibility to life itself. Life being anything that lived. We had lived on its poorer banks and knew what it felt. Actually, life just needs kindness. If there is kindness, there are enough resources. Unfortunately, the quality is becoming rare. And it is largely because money has become power. Society has become so dysfunctional with this outcome that those who have money feel smarter and superior to others, because those who don’t, make them feel that way. The current obsession with money is based on this social pattern, resulting in humanity opting to use its baser nature to go through life, putting money in the grips of psychology, instead of our being.

We are people of the mind. If we were people of the heart, compassion would have replaced our need for power. We live so much in the mind that we revolve our entire lives around a thought process, which only plays us. So we fail to see that buried underneath all our thoughts is a truth, the truth of us. And it shows that the power we seek as individuals is weakening humanity as a whole. And what good would such a power do? One day we are going to wake up to this fact and feel very stupid. So perhaps it’s best we continue to sleep because ignorance is bliss they say. And it may help us with the suitcases when we die because packing all that money and power won’t be easy.