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E-Pao! Essay - Yet Money Is Everything

Yet Money Is Everything

By: Kamlesh Khundrakpam Singh *



Money, money, money must be funny in the rich mans' world.

A classic band called ABBA sung this song. So people can you imagine what motivates this classic band like ABBA to write this song? The answer is in the song itself-:"the money". But, What if the money becomes a funny thing in poor mans' world too?

It's really hard to imagine that in today's world. In today world everybody seems to be struggling for the money. I guess the final destination of most peoples' life is the money itself. To be able to survive in this world; money is the only thing that comes in everybody's mind. Have you ever thought a world without money?

In the September 2006 edition of Osho times I caught my eye with an article called "Are wealthy people really that happy?" I would like to share the whole article with you here.

Who is happier, the rich person or the poor one? Discussing the Happy Planet Index, a recent BBC News report offers a surprising answer to this question: "People can live long, happy lives without consuming large amount of earth's resources, a survey suggest.

The 178-nation Happy Planet Index list the South Pacific island of Vanuatu as the happiest nation on the planet, while UK is ranked 108th. The index is based on the consumption levels, life expectancy and happiness, rather than the national economic wealth measurement such GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

The study was compiled by the think-tank The New Economics Foundation. "Latin American nation dominate the top ten places in the index, while African and Eastern European nation fill most bottom ten. Among the world's largest economies, Germany is ranked 81st, Japan 95th, while the US comes in 150th.

"Richard Layard, director of the Well-Being Programme at the London School of Economics' Centre for the Economics Performance, said that over the last 50 years living standard in the West had improved enormously but we had become no happier. 'This shows we should not sacrifice human relationships, which are the main source of happiness, for the sake of economic growth.'"

(Below short passage is excerpted from the book called The Search written by Osho.)

People think if they can earn enough money they will be happy. It is not so. If you are happy, you will be rich; a happy person cannot be otherwise. He may not have the big palaces, but still he will be rich. He may be a beggar on the street, but still he will be rich.

But you first try to have much wealth, then you think you will be happy. It never happens that way, because wealth cannot be the cause of happiness. Happiness is always a cause of wealth. You think that essential things will come. "First let me manage the non-essential. By managing the non-essential I will create a situation". First, power, prestige, wealth - all non-essential things.

Try to look deep into your being, and think of the essential. Be happy! Right this moment you can be happy. Nobody is barring the path. And if you cannot be happy right this moment, you can never be happy. Happiness has nothing to do with the future. Happiness knows no tomorrow, because happiness does not depend on anything else. It is just an attitude. You can be happy right now as you are.

So the point is "Is money to be blamed here for not being happy in once life?" I have seen and heard many people becoming happier than ever before because of the money. The unanswered question is "Are they really that happy?"

I guess I have to make a personal survey on this, before I write something stupid. So, in this fast evolving and changing world; what is this happiness all about?

I had read some books by Osho. Here I am giving some emphasis on Osho's visions as he has been described by the Sunday Times of London as one of the "1,000 Makers of 20th Century" and by American author Tom Robbins as "the most dangerous man since Jesus Christ" ("I guess Jesus Christ was also a dangerous man too").

Let's find out what Osho has to say about the real happiness.

In his book called "Joy, the happiness that comes within" he says "Happiness has nothing to do with success, happiness has nothing to do with ambition, happiness has nothing to do with money, power, prestige. Happiness has something to do with your consciousness, not with your character".

"A happy person needs no religion, a happy person needs no temple, no church-because for a happy person the whole universe is the temple, the whole existence is the church".

Now let me try to excerpt a passage form the book.

No ambitious person has ever been happy; in fact the ambitious person is the unhappiest in the world. But we go on training children to be ambitious. "Be the first, be at the top and you will be happy!" and have you ever seen anybody at the top and happy at the same time? Was Alexander the Great happy when he became the world conqueror? He was one of the unhappiest men who had ever lived on the earth. Seeing the blissfulness of Diogenes, he became jealous. Becoming jealous of a beggar….?

Diogenes was a beggar; he had nothing not even a begging bowl. At least Buddha had a begging bowl with him and three robes. Diogenes was naked-and no begging bowl. He was thirsty, it was hot, and he wanted to drink water. And on the way, just when he was on the bank, a dog passed by him, running, panting, jump into the river, had a good bath and drank to his heart's content.

This idea arose in Diogenes' mind: "This god is freer than me- he does not have to carry a begging bowl. And if he can manage, why can't I mange without a begging bowl? This is my possession, and I have to keep an eye on it because it because it can be stolen. Even in the night once or twice I have to feel whether is still there or gone."

He threw the begging bowl into the river, bowed to the dog, thanked him for the great message that he had brought for him from the existence. This man, who had nothing, created jealousy in Alexander's mind. How miserable he must have been! He confessed to Diogenes, "If ever again God gives me birth, I will ask him,' this time, please don't make me Alexander-make me Diogenes.'"

Diogenes laughed uproariously, and he called the dog-because they had become friends by now, they had started living together-he called the dog and said," Look, listen, what non-sense he is talking about! Next life he wants to be Diogenes! Why next life? Why postponed? Who knows about the next life?

Even the next day is uncertain, the next morning is not certain-what to say about the next life! If you really wan to Diogenes, you can be right one this moment, here now. Throw your clothes into the river and forget all about conquering the world! That is sheer stupidity and you know it.

"And you have confessed that you are miserable, you have confessed that Diogenes is in a far better, more blissful state. So why not be a Diogenes right now? Lie down on the bank of the river where I am taking my sunbath! The bank is big enough for both of us."

Alexander could not accept the invitation, of course. He said," Thank you for your invitation. Right now I cannot do it, but next life……"

Diogenes asked him, "Where are you going? And what will you do even if you have conquered the world?"

Alexander said,"Then I will rest."

Diogenes said, "This seems to be absolutely absurd-I am resting right now!"

If Alexander is not happy, if Adolf Hitler is not happy, if Rockefellers and Carnegies are not happy-the people who have all the money of the world, if they are not happy, the people who have all the power in the world, if they are not happy….Just watch people who have succeeded in the world and you will drop and you will drop the ides of success. Nothing fails like success. Although you have been told that nothing succeeds like success, I say to you that nothing fails like success.

Happiness has nothing to do with success. Happiness has nothing to do with ambition; happiness has nothing to do with money, power, prestige. Happiness has something to do with your consciousness, not with your character. Let me remind you-character is not you, it is something you have cultivated.

You can become saint, still you will not be happy if your sainthood is nothing but a practiced sainthood. And that's how people become saints. Catholics, Jains, Hindus-how do they become saints? They practice inch by inch, in detail, when to get up, what to eat, what not to eat, when to go bed……

Conclusion: If everyone starts following the visions of Osho, perhaps someday world might change to a better place. But in today's world only THE MONEY can guide you through happiness. Happiness does need money. Even a modern beggar knows that.

The choice is yours now. Whether you sacrifice human relations or not or you be in the island of Vanuatu or some other places, but for some yet money is everything.


Kamlesh Khundrakpam Singh writes regularly to e-pao.net
The Writer can be contacted at kamlesh_mojo@rediffmail.com
This article was webcasted on October 16th, 2006


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