By Ralph Carpio
Do wealth and spirituality mix? I’ve often thought that to be an interesting topic of debate. An even deeper topic asks what is true wealth to begin with? Certainly we can propose that money itself defines wealth. Indeed, the ability to provide for oneself and others is part of wealth. But can our description of wealth stop there? I think the spirit within us prompts us to upgrade our view in this area.
Since I believe the very function of life, as we know it, is to grow, expand and become full, mature beings, I am not satisfied to define true wealth as simply a matter of monetary means. But I find great appeal in the wording “ability to provide”. In fact, even more simply, in the word “ability.” You see the ability to do anything, pay a bill, wash a car, make a meal connotes empowerment.
I believe the concept of empowerment can lead us to a higher definition of true wealth. I am not speaking of a power that forces, demands or takes from another. I am referring to a power within each of us to shape, create and design our own lives. Imagine a world where each person is endowed with such power, everyone being able to actually sit down and choose the very path of his or her life.
In such a world as this, there would be no place for theft or jealousy, simply because there would be no need for it. The very concept of taking from another would be obsolete. True wealth in my observation entails being able, able to function and interact in the world and with others in an air of mutual respect and dignity, knowing your full value and worth and the value and worth of others.
I propose true wealth involves being able to go where your soul leads, express all you have inside and the arena in which to do so. These same aspects would be automatically extended to others, so that there is balance and flow, the cornerstones of a fully functioning existence. Do wealth and spirituality mix? I say a hearty yes. The true and highest essence of wealth recognizes self and others. This includes respect for other people as well as animals, nature and even material objects.
How to implement this concept is the next logical question. The answer lies within. Taking moments to delve deep inside in order to see what’s there, what we’re truly made of. When we do so, exterior barriers that we have constructed in ignorance begin to melt away. When we begin to focus our thoughts to the very core of our beings, we are unable to see ourselves as anything but the same things in different packages.
Using dividers such as gender, social and economic class, sexual orientation and body size fades into the background. This is because at our deepest core, we see that we are the same, exactly the same. A deeper understanding of self and others is where true wealth begins.
Ralph Carpio is the author of “The Constant Creator In You”, published by Rainbow Books. You may read more at his website: www.constantcreator.homestead.com
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