Seems like a lot of times we are obsessed about being rich. We watch the lives of the elite with curiosity. We daydream about living in mansions. We wonder how the other half spends their leisure time. We buy lottery tickets and fantasize about jackpots.
I was musing on our cultural fascination with wealth today when it occurred to me that many of the well off people I know tend to be very one dimensional. They protect their image so that idiosyncrasies, if they exist, are shushed. They complain that life is boring. Drama stays locked in the closet. Life runs in predictable lines.
People I know that live closer to the underside of the Poverty Guidelines tend to be more colorful characters. Their lives are full of interesting situations and in a constant state of change. They also tend to be empathetic and generous despite their lack. Drama is usually hung out with the laundry. Life runs in zig zags all over the place.
Now of course there are exceptions both ways. I know poor people that are about as interesting as a stick of gum and wealthier people that are deeply loving and kind. It makes me think that money shouldn’t have the importance that we give to it. Money is a tool and is amoral. Whether it is good or bad depends on what we do with it.
Here’s what I’ve concluded: Since it can’t buy happiness, joy or love let me just have enough to live. Wisdom is knowing how to be satisfied with today. Wealth isn’t a number; it’s a state of mind.