fbpx
View Cart

Money: A Blessing or a Curse?

PRINT
money tree

Money is soul-energy, it represents the very energy of life itself; depending how you use it can either free you or enslave you — The Rebbe

A man once set out to visit a great sage in the town of Mezritch. When he arrived, he asked where to find the man, and was shown to a tiny, decrepit shack at the edge of town. Inside, there was nothing but a broken-down bed and a table full of books, where an old man was studying. The traveler was shaken. “Where does the sage live?” he asked the old man.

“It is I,’’ said the old man. “What is disturbing you so?”

“I don’t understand. You are a great sage, with so many disciples that your name is known all across the country. It doesn’t seem fitting that you should be living in a room like this. You should be living in a palace.”

“Where do you live?” the old man asked.

“I live in a palace, a grand home with magnificent furnishings.”

“And how do you make a living?”

The man explained that he was a businessman, traveling twice a year to a large city to buy materials that he brought back and sold to local merchants. The sage asked him where he stayed when he was in the city.

“I stay in a small room in a small hotel,” he answered.

“If someone were to walk into that small room, might they not say, ‘Why are you, a wealthy businessman, living in such a small room?’ And you would say, ‘I am only on the road for a short time, so this is all I need. Come to my real home, and you will see that it is entirely different.”

“My friend, the same is here,” the old man continued. “I am also only on the road. This material world is just a road. In my home, too, it is very different. Come to my spiritual home, and you will see that I live in a palace.”

Is money a blessing or a curse?

Most people measure their self-worth by their bank account. The bigger it is, the better they feel about themselves. Because we put so much energy into earning money, it represents the very energy of life as we see it.

Some people feel that they and they alone are responsible for their success, that their intelligence and abilities made it so. This is the serious challenge of wealth: to not be deceived by your own ego but to remember that it is G-d who gives us the power to become prosperous.

This is not to say that your success is not a result of your efforts; of course it is. And you must do everything possible to ensure success, not just sit back and wait for money to come your way. But you must acknowledge that it is G-d’s blessing, and not your effort alone, that creates wealth.

On its own, money can be a curse. Money can cause endless anxiety, for no matter how much you have, you can never be sure that you will not somehow lose it all.

You can transform money from a curse to a blessing through giving charity.
When you put money in perspective and recognize why it was given to you, it becomes a blessing instead of a curse. And by using your wealth for charitable and philanthropic purposes instead of spending it all on the desire of the moment, your money becomes eternal.

How does giving charity turn money into a blessing?

The power of charity does not allow you to become bogged down in your own self-interest. Acts of goodness and kindness are virtuous, but giving money to charity is the most powerful way to elevate your soul, for it means giving a piece of everything that you are — your abilities, your efforts, your ambitions, your compassion.

The key to charity lies in understanding that it is not just a gift to the receiver, but to the giver as well. The need to be charitable is one of the most fundamental human needs; just as we need food and protection and love, we need to share what has been given to us. If a wealthy person gives arrogantly, thinking that he is doing a great favor, he is sadly mistaken: the favor is being done to him. “More than the rich man does for the pauper,” say the sages, “the pauper does for the rich man.”

If I give charity, won’t there be less for me?

From a pure business perspective, one may argue that charity simply reduces one’s financial resources. But when we recognize that G-d’s blessing is the ultimate source of wealth, charity becomes the wisest investment there is. If someone is having financial difficulty in his business, he should increase the amount of his charitable contributions in order to increase G-d’s blessing for wealth. As the sages say, “Give charity, so that you may prosper.” Charity opens up new channels of wealth from above.

It is the call of our generation to increase charity in any way possible. We should all be inspired — and inspire others — to make charity a regular part of our lives.

ACTION

There are many practical ways to encourage regular charity-giving, no matter how small it may be.

  • Place a charity box in the various rooms of your home, in your office, in your car.
  • Teach your children to give money and time to others.
  • Schools should cultivate generosity by regularly distributing money and goods that their students can pass on to those in need, and companies should do the same for their employees.

Look around and ask yourself, What do I have to give that can help someone else? Do not worry that you cannot be as generous as you would like, or that you don’t have the time to spare. When it comes to giving of yourself, there is nothing too small, and nothing too great.

TML footer banner

Buy the best-seller, Toward a Meaningful Life starting at $13.99, from our MLC ShopAmazon or Kindle. Or sign up for our weekly email to receive a dose of meaning every Thursday night.

A Spiritual Road Map for Living
4.94 out of 5

Toward a Meaningful Life

Available in softcover ($13.99) and hardcover ($24.99).

PRINT

Did you enjoy this? Get personalized content delivered to your own MLC profile page by joining the MLC community. It's free! Click here to find out more.

10
Leave a Reply

10 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
1 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
3 Comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Guru

Every day, try to feed someone who is not your household member. This need not be another human, it can be a pet too.If you do not have a pet, sprinkle a handful of grains to the birds and squirrels outside your kitchen window/yard/patio.It could also be some sugar sprinkled in your yard. This is a nice thing to do when your morning cup of tea is getting ready. You will be amazed at the companionship you get from these birds/squirrels. You will soon notice that they convey different messages to you through the noises they make.Their happiness at your… Read more »

Vera M.

Money, of itself, is neither a blessing nor a curse. It does not have the ability to do anything – either for itself or with itself. It is only when money is in the hands of somebody who is able to put it to use that it acquires the possibility of becoming a blessing or a curse. Furthermore, according to how it is put to use, money can confer blessing or curse upon those who give it and those who receive it. The blessing or curse is determined, not by the money, but by the purpose and use to which… Read more »

Peter

Money is good and good, people are the ones who make money seem to be bad, else, it is good in every sense of it.

Aditya Raj

I think money is good, but excess money is not good. Because,you all know that excess of every thing is bad.

Guru

Recollecting even one past pleasant event with gratitude, before the start of a day will protect us from all losses.

Wishing others well at least once a day will always bring all tangible and intangible blessings into our lives.

Any predicted bad astrological events can be avoided or any predicted good astrological events can be enhanced by the above two steps.

Guru

An intelligent person never makes money for the next generation, but only enables or educates or enhances the skills in every generation to live within their rightful honest means. There is no higher dignity than living within one’s rightful honest means. When education or skills combine with gratitude and humility, they attract and accumulate not just money but healthy material and spiritual wealth that does not need any legal system /trusts /right marriages in a caste to protect it. We are put on this earth not be successful but only to be faithful to righteous ways with gratitude and humility.… Read more »

ravinder

Money is curse depend on satiation

Chauhan

I think money is bless because without money we are nothing if you go any sector like education sector intertanmt sector doc sector you have to need money

duduzile

how can we say money is a bleesing or curse

Virrpooja

its true if we dont give charity we becomes arrogant and selfish.

SIGN UP FOR SOULGYM

Short Weekly Insights To Self Mastery

We will never share your email address with anyone