The Distribution of Wealth
The Distribution of Wealth
Money is not, as many people believe, 'the root of all evil'. There is something within human beings that uses money as a means to express its greed. Do away with money and put anything else in its place and, as long as people continue to be possessed by their own weakness, base appetites and passions the probablem will be the same. So it is not money that is to blame, but man. Man is not sufficiently enlightened, he doesn't know what attitude to adopt with regard to money, how to use it properly, for what reasons and what purpose it should be used. In itself, money is neither good nor bad; it is neutral. At the same time, it is a tremendously powerful means in the hands of those who possess it and this is why it can be used either to destroy or to save. The whole question, therefore, is one of attitude. Money is powerful simply because human beings attribute great value to it. If they decided, tomorrow, to divest money of its value and attribute it to something else, the same pattern would repeat itself all over again, with the same tragedies, the same seductions, the same splendours and the same degradations.
Keep your money in your safe or in your pocket, but never in your head. If you keep it in your head it will be an opaque screen that will cloud your vision. If you keep it before your eyes as an ideal to be reached at all costs, less ready to see people's good points; you will be less considerate, generous and tolerant. You will become severe, intransigent and cruel. To have no money at all, on the other hand, is not desirable either. People have sometimes wanted to live in stark poverty, thinking that it would enhance their spiritual life, and have ended by becoming a useless burden to society. That is not the ideal solution! As long as we are on earth and things are organized as they are today, we need money.
Perhaps, in the future, there will be no more money: our currency will be love. Yes, why not? Love is a far more valuable currency than gold! But it is still too soon for mankind to achieve this conception of things and, as we may be sure that money will be with us for some time to come, it is important to have the right ideas about it so as to avoid becoming a prey to its seductive wiles. That is all we need: the right attitude. It is not wrong to have money. How could you help others if you had no money? It is all very well to have a heart full of love but, if you have nothing else, you still cannot help people materially. I seem to be talking to you as though I had to persuade you - as though you needed to be persuaded that money was necessary! I know that I don't have to worry about that: you all agree that we need money. The only question is how to behave where money is concerned, how to use it.
If you give money to someone who has not achieved the mastery of his thoughts, feelings and desires, he will hasten to use it and abuse it for his own debasement. His new wealth will enable him to ruin his enemies, have all the women he wants, etc. You cannot pin the blame on the money: if the desires of his heart are evil, it is not the fault of money. You can say the same for anything else: oil, gas, coal etc.: you can use them all for constructive or destructive purpose and, if you choose to use them for an evil purpose, it is not their fault. The fault lies with you who harbour evil in your heart.
The conclusion to be drawn from all this is that you must first transform yourself so as to be capable of using money and all your other possessions for no other purpose than your own elevation and the good of humanity. Once you achieve this, you can possess billions and still not fall a prey to it, still resist its lures; you will be in a position, then, to realize the sublime things that you have dreamed of for so long.
Those who are still weak, still subject to their passions should not be given money; that is clear, but if you give money to Masters and Initiates, they will never use it for anything but good. So it is human beings who need to be changed for the better and money can be left to fulfil the purpose for which it was meant; it is not at fault. I have so often heard people saying, 'Money is the cause of all our misfortunes'. Well, they say that as long as they haven't got any, but as soon as they get some we hear a different tune. In the first place, therefore, they are being stupid in failing to recognize the true cause of their misfortunes and, in the second place, they are being dishonest. Two terrible failings! What they should say is, 'Money is very, very necessary. In fact, it's wonderful; but Heaven forbid that I should ever become a slave to it!' If you think that money is the only thing that matters, you will have effectively destroyed the very qualities that would have enabled you to savour the pleasures and delights that wealth can buy. This is the danger: you will have everthing you have ever desired and still be unhappy because you will have everything you have ever desired and still be unhappy because you will have destroyed the element that enabled you to find such exquisite, subtle flavour in every experience. This is the greatest misfortune: to be in a position to have everything you want, to indulge all your desires and to be incapable of enjoying or getting any pleasure out of any of it.
Of course, it is also terrible to be destitute and penniless. But if you had the choice between possessing everything and being incapable of enjoying it on the one hand and, on the other, of possessing nothing but of preserving your powers of enjoyment, you would be better off with the second alternative for, when you have a sense of taste, you can delight in whatever comes to keep this power of enjoyment for it is also linked to health. To be sure, the best of all is to have both: money and the ability to enjoy it. If I see someone hurrying to give me money, I'm not going to fly into a rage and refuse it, but I have not devoted my life to trying to get a lot of money. If it comes, as I say, I'm not going to refuse it or drive it away, but I would never abandon my work to go in search of it: never!
To retain your ability for enjoyment, that si what counts. But only light can give you this sense of taste, this capacity to enjoy everything. Once you have found the light, whatever your activities, whether you are eating, working or going for a walk, everything has the most delicious flavour.
If you don't work with light, if you don't understand what light is, it means that you have not understood the first thing about life. Light is all: light created the world; light is the cause of the universe. Light is a spirit, a spirit that comes from the sun. Each ray is a tremendous force which travels througout the universe to penetrate matter and accomplish its work in it. If ever there were a subject that needed to be studied in depth it is the subject of light: the nature of light, how it works and how we can use it and work with it. He who abandons light and focuses exclusively on money and his business interests is on the wrong track for the gold he is pursuing is, in fact, simply a condensed form of light. Yes, gold is a condensation of the sun's rays which have been collected and fashioned by creatures living underground. What happens when you put gold and silver on a pedestal and neglect light? It means that you are forgetting the father, the cause of all things. Or, if you prefer, you are neglecting the lady of the manor and paying court to her servant.
Naturally enough, when her mistress sees this, she will close her door to you and tell you, ?It is I who am entitled to the place of honour; I see your courting my cook or my chambermaid whereas you should be giving first place in your love and respect to me. Very well, all doors will be close to you!'
When you have money it opens all doors in the physical world, that is true. But the other doors, the doors of peace, happiness, joy and inspiration, the doors of all the qualities and virtues remain closed to you. What good will it do you to find all other doors open if the doors of the sanctuary remain closed to you? Are you incapable of feeling joy or of taking pleasure in anything you do? It is a sure sign that the spiritual doors are closed to you and this means that you have a wrong understanding of life and the values of life.
You must give your love and homage to the lady of the house, the princess; in this way her servants will also serve you. The princess will tell them, 'Give him food and drink; give him clothes and a room', and her servants will hasten to obey: 'Yes, my lady; yes, Your Highness.' Gold is the servant whom we cherish so dearly that we never think about whose service she is in. Gold is dependent on the light of the sun; it is formed by light. So it is light that you must love first and foremost, and the gold will follow; it will come to you. When you walk out with the princess, all her attendants will follow you, ready to serve you. Whereas, if your head is full of gold, it will dazzle and blind you to everything else. Once the idea of money fills your head, you will have eyes for nothing else, not even for the beauty, splendour and intelligence of creation.
You will object, 'What are you talking about? We have to have money.' Believe me, I know better than you how necessary money is. But I still say that you must not fill your head with it; you must not make it your master, your ideal; you must not think that thath is what life is all about. money is a means, a tool, an agent, yes; but not an ideal, not a goal. Your ideal must be something quite different: your ideal must be light; your goal must be light. Never let money become your master; it is a very good servant but a very bad master; as your master it will give you disastrous advice and lead you away from the Kingdom of God. Keep your mind fixed on light, therefore, because, if you possess the light you will be capable of healing yourself, of achieving the mastery of yourself, of understanding the whole of life... and even gold will come your way. But if you don't possess the light, there will always be others more intelligent than you who will rob you of what you have. What else can you expect if you're so stupid?
The trouble is that people are stupid: they have found their attitudes at a commonplace stall in a commonplace market and now they spend their time clamouring for cash, cash and still more cash because, they say, 'If I had lots fo cash I could get everything else I wanted!' Yes, everybody knows that particular stall but almost nobody knows what I know. For I also have a stall in the market and you would do better to come to my stall. You will soon see what you can buy there.
Omraam Mikhael Aivanhov