Money and Success: Are they synonymous?
Success and spirituality – two words that you don’t often see used in the same sentence, never mind used together in a book title. This is a person’s initial impression of the book, “The Spirituality of Success.” The main reason for this disconnect is that to many people spirituality and religion are synonymous.
What then follows are the catechismic teachings associating money with evil, and since many think of success as money, you come full circle and have the conditioned mental adaptation of the title, which reads “The Religion of Money.” And we all know that title can’t be correct! Well, at least, according to what we’ve read and been taught through our elementary years of development.
In reality, this is the automatic, conditioned response to the title. Of course, as one thinks further, we remember that we’ve learned that money is not success, and that spirituality can be religious, but it doesn’t have to be.
In fact, the human race has learned that there is a spiritual aspect to every thing that occurs in a person’s life.
The difficulty with that realization remaining obvious to us, as with the physical and mental aspects, is that the spirituality lies at a deeper level of consciousness. It’s not just on the surface, and therefore obvious, as is a thought or a physical or emotional feeling.
Spirituality travels to and involves the core of our being, the very essence of who we are. As a blatant example, anyone who has been present at the birth of a baby experiences the physical/emotional and mental aspects, but the spiritual aspect is so overwhelming that it becomes a lifetime memory. The mystical wonder and amazement of what is occurring, i.e. the spiritual aspect, overrides the physical and mental aspects.
In our hurried day-to-day existence, we forget that this mystical wonder and amazement is present in every thing, every day! That’s one of the reasons why we don’t remember much of what we did just a few days ago.
This is not to deny the importance of the physical and mental aspects, but to reveal that the spiritual aspect is responsible for the depth and meaning of a person’s existence.
Is it then such a wonder that in their later years, people ask themselves “Is that all there is?”
Without the spiritual aspect, life tends to be a hollow, meaningless exercise.
What, then, is the meaning of “The Spirituality of Success?”
It refers to the deeper meaning behind a person’s reason for success. Every spiritual movement, religious or otherwise, that has ever existed has within it a teaching that instructs its followers that life is a gargantuan concept, larger than any one person alone. These teachings are referring to the spirituality of life.
Every person has physical, mental and spiritual aspects to their being, and by correlation the same is true of that person’s existence and everything that constitutes that existence. When a person’s physical, mental or spiritual development is lacking or deficient in some way that will have its consequences and also by extension this is true of everything that occurs in a person’s existence. That’s why the spirituality of success is so important.
If the motivation for your success is only personal gain, then that violates this gargantuan concept of life that is a universal law and the result is lack of success.
This is why success is such an elusive and sought after prize.
Many success books and many success formulas profess the physical and mental aspects of success – what you must do and what you must think. In the study of successful people, these are the obvious aspects that become very apparent.
But there is a deeper, more meaningful aspect to success, the spiritual aspect, which tells you what you must be in order to be successful. If ignored, the result is lack of success or a success that is short-lived and meaningless.
This realization cannot be gleaned from a study of success alone.
Success and failure live in relationship with each other. You can’t have one without the other.
An easier example of the relationship is a coin whose heads and tails are separate in appearance, but inseparable in their existence. Without one you can’t have or even begin to comprehend the other.
This is where “The Spirituality of Success” is different. Its principles were derived from a study of people who did not achieve success, even though they had every talent and skill they needed, as well as, the proper opportunity and training.
The first revelation of this course of study was that you could do and think everything that resulted in success, but if you also did a couple of things that resulted in failure, then the end result was lack of success. It’s something like the old algebraic principle that we learned in school – that a positive number, no matter how large, multiplied by a negative number, no matter how small, always results in a negative number.
Likewise when we look at the conditioned belief that states, “Money is success,” and apply a little alternative thinking, we come to the realization that this equation is also untrue.
While money is one of the telltale characteristics of success, it certainly does not embody the entire “success” concept. Success, at its core, has happiness as its essence. People want to be successful because they want to be happy. But don’t we all know of people who have money but are miserable? Either that or their lives seem to experience some “bad luck” in other areas (physical and mental) such as health, relationships, or general well being? Or they’re just not nice people to be with? For these people, money is not a blessing, it’s a curse!
So the question arises as to why, for some, money is a blessing, while for others, it’s a curse?
Like everything else, money has an energy, and as is true of all energies, can be used in a constructive or destructive way. The evident determinants of its varied use are motivations and application.
Let’s start with motivation. How was the energy acquired? For most forms of energy that are in use today, this question is seldom asked, but is more and more becoming a realization for mankind, as attested to in the environmental area. Money can be acquired legally or illegally, ethically or unethically, morally or immorally. The motivation behind the procurement of money and its energy determines initially whether it is a curse or a blessing. This is where biblical teaching begins to bump up against conventional scientific wisdom.
The legal motivation is simply understood and defined, in the quote, “Crime doesn’t pay.” The ethical question, however, is more elusive to define because ethics is subjective. Ultimately, ethics is not subjective, but society has made it so with questionable beliefs, indicated by some of the colloquialisms in use today, such as, “Only the strong survive,” and “The end justifies the means.”
Another major factor that underlies the societal belief structure of ethics is the militaristic influence of a society whose beginning was born of revolution and whose past has been riddled with warlike confrontations since its inception. This militaristic influence has at its core the concepts of winner and loser, victor and vanquished, master and slave, strong and weak. When you define the ethics of existence using these standards, you derive a code of ethics that is in many ways contrary to universal law, and what I all the universal ethical code.
This subjective, illusory, conditioned concept of “life is war” cannot however withstand spiritual or scientific scrutiny. For, in reality, the premise upon which these wartime beliefs are founded is untrue. The militaristic concept of the relationship of man with man, man with nature, and man with the universe are based on the false concepts of scarcity, competition, deception, and power.
These concepts lead to the erroneous conclusion that there is always a winner and always a loser.
Big business has already made the realization that functioning through a belief structure based on abundance, sharing, disclosure and mutuality is infinitely more profitable than using the militaristic concept as their baseline for beliefs. Cornering the market is passé because it has proven to be a lot less profitable than licensing a product to everyone they can find.
The economy’s progression from nation-based to global-based has been a primary factor in this evolution. The once-applauded Japanese model of business based on the concept of “business is war” has evaporated because Japan experienced the inevitable result of a warlike mindset, which is one of self-consumption, isolation, and self-destruction. In essence, the energy created by the Japanese model was destructive, and their extended economic depression is the proof of that negative result.
So too is the inevitable conclusion of the energy connected to money that is procured in unethical ways by an individual. This violation of universal law leads to negative consequences that the uninformed define as “bad luck.” Eastern belief refers to it as karma. In the street, it is defined by the truism: “What goes around, comes around.” If money is achieved in unethical self-centered ways, one reaps the same negative energy consequences as was mentioned before, and for an individual, it occurs on the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels. The results are varied but usually surface through some form of ill-health, psychological disorder, emotional imbalance, or a meaningless, unfulfilled life caused by a spiritual void.
The consequences are no better for money that is improperly applied, even if it was acquired in an ethical way. If the energy connected with money is not shared, it diffuses and, ultimately, implodes. Energy must be kept in motion to maintain its vitality. The accumulation of money for its own sake reaps negative consequences as attested to by historical documents as old as the Bible. This is the practical reason behind tithing. If money is hoarded, it is accumulated for its own sake; the guilty party reaps the same “bad luck” as the person who acquired money through unethical means. This is the “evil” of money alluded to in biblical teachings.
The same is true of money that is acquired or accumulated immorally. If suffering is caused by the activity employed in acquiring or accumulating money, then that is the result experienced by the person performing the action. The realization that scientific and spiritual study is concluding is that the universe is a reflective one, which will return in like kind the energy that was infused or applied. Thus the veritable wisdom of the age-old saying, “As ye sow, so shall ye reap!”
The only way to achieve authentic, long-lasting success, and the happiness that is associated with it, is by acknowledging the presence of a spirituality of success. The method of acquisition, the legality, ethics, and morality employed by the active party, and likewise application of the proceeds are the realm of the spirituality of success. Acknowledgement and adherence to correct spiritual principles will determine whether the monetary result is a blessing or a curse. Put simply, if you want to reap happiness, sow happiness!