Saturday, January 4, 2014

What is the cost?


You know, I'm not exactly good with it.
As I write this, things are tight, and by tight I mean...ttiiight.

It's funny, as the bank account fades and dwindles down, a part of me is just, not worried.

I look at my children and I realize that maybe the number in the bank account is low, but that doesn't define the worth and beauty of my children. And it doesn't define the worth of me or my life either.

I realize, we might be 'broke', but we're not poor. We're richer than rich.

And this is the difference between me and billions of other people in our world.

You see, wealth is not just a number in a bank account.

It's your family, your support, your sense of security and worth.

It's not just stocks, and IRA-s and 401Ks

It has to do with what privilege you have, and a lot to do with simple dumb chance.

You see, it's like this:
Because of my family, I'll never be hungry.
Because of my community of loved ones, I'll never go without shelter unless I so choose to.
Because of my education, I'll always be able to submit a competitive application
So material things can
 and could
and do
come easily to me.
These are solid things,
              that can easily build and bring success
                        and fill my bank account
                                                                    if need be.

But wealth is beyond the number in my bank account.
And so here's where I stand, 25 and trying to figure life out:

If money comes and goes so easily, and is in some ways a measure of wealth, but not definitive of it, how can I live in a way that takes opportunity and privilege that I inherently have, and turn it around to not only serve be but be of benefit to others as well?

How can I honor those who weren't born with as good of chance to climb the ladder as me, geographically, economically or culturally? How can I live in the state that I am, and to the best of my ability simultaneously minimize and maximize my impact? Manifest dignity?

I'm working now, through a mess of finance, hoping to better understand one day how I can:

Use the power of my economic class and opportunity, to mindfully care for people - not only me.

As of now, I believe it means
Limiting my consumption in ways that helps alleviate the suffering of the world at large: both ecologically and humanely. This means striving to choose economic and consumptive boundaries that limit waste, and work done by slaves.

Desire is a strange thing, if it weren't for it we wouldn't "need" or "want" many things. Life would be simple, it would be about food, shelter, clothing, community. These are all things that come relatively easily, if you can pass down wisdom generationally. But we've grown to fill our houses with things, like computers and TV's, entertainment and delicacies. These things are all nice and not inherently bad, but so much of it comes at such a great cost.

So what is the cost of really being rich? Of having a lot of money, and having privilege?

No comments:

Post a Comment