Sunday, May 26, 2013

Contented Life-4; Can Wealth Bring Happiness?

Financial stability in one’s life will increase the confidence level of the person and it will increase his chances for success comparatively. But the concept that more money will make a person happier is unfounded according to some rich persons’ testimonies.

It’s always a package. Along with richness some sort of miseries also is included in each package. Again, everything will appear to be perfect to the outside world, but the person himself will realise that more money or more richness did not bring any more happiness with it. In fact, more happiness was there when this richness was not there.

There is nothing wrong in becoming rich. However, the rich one should realize that there is a majority deprived of the facilities he has, and he is one of the luckiest few blessed with the richness and, therefore, he should keep a considerable portion of his richness to help the poor. Amassing wealth by struggling and not even meeting the requirements of the present situation for next generation is foolishness. Such wealth will only render the next generation lazy and failure stories. They will not realize the value of money.

There was old priest in our parish when I was in my teenage. There was a servant for cooking and housekeeping. The servant was in a habit of extracting money from the priest in some clever manner making the priest believe that the money given to the servant was utilised fully for legitimate expense. When we came to know that the servant was cheating the priest, we brought that to the knowledge of the priest. To our surprise the priest told us with a jolly face:” He needs money. The salary he gets is not enough for him to meet his family needs. Let him cheat me; I don’t mind”. The priest was so happy that somebody has been cheating him continuously.

Well, I have seen many who bargain for less price of vegetables, fish etc in local market when we go for marketing together. It gives tremendous happiness to them if they could persuade the vendor to give up the item even for a meagre discount of Rs.10. But the happiness is momentary. On the other hand, sympathising with vendor, a boy trying to raise money to support his family consisting of bedridden parents, giving Rs.10 more than the price he asked would have rendered both the seller and buyer happier and more contented. It is better to get cheated at times.

There are many examples of persons drawing huge sum as monthly salary realise on a fine day that money does not matter and leave the job to do whatever they have been cherishing for. Obviously, the money they were making did not make them happy. Interestingly, those who renounce wealth will realsie later that every relationship existed till that time, including relationship with with spouse or children, was based on the wealth he possessed or the income he generated.

Making money through unethical means will yield bad returns. There are many living examples in front of us; we only need to open our eyes and observe.

By nature, everyone gets what he needs. One may feel what he has is not enough only when he compares himself with others who have more than him. The tendency to undervalue what one has and overvalue what others have is humane. If we want to be contented, the character we build within us should be able to see richness and poverty with almost same feelings.

Mathews Jacob

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