Wealth – Do You Know What It Really Means?
It’s probably not the definition of wealth that you’re expecting …
“Wealth is the number of forward days you can survive at your present standard of living, given that you stop working today.” — R Buckminster Fuller
The media, big business, and big finance continually bombards us with the notion that wealthy people own big houses, properties, expensive cars, own large stock portfolios and businesses and go on luxurious holidays.
Perhaps that isn’t all true.
If you have read The Millionaire Next Door, Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko you will know that it isn’t. The more glamorous elements apply to very few wealthy people, and perhaps to the extremely wealthy but the wealthy are people you would least suspect.
Did you know that every time the housing market slows down there is a financial crisis?
With around 60% of your GDP involved in the housing industry the economy has to go into crisis.
With our current economic structure we must keep ‘building’ just to stay afloat; we must keep building buildings … no wonder we’re getting tired.
Our entire planet is in such ‘distress’ from our “earning a living” that nature is having increasing difficulty looking after us, or as ‘Bucky’ Fuller would say … she’s having difficulty making us a “physical success”.
It is obvious to many that we simply have not understood nature, not understood our planet and the Universe and not understood our role in her … and have been playing some sort of “win as much as you can” game, even if it is at the expense of a neighbor.
A short time ago a wealthy friend and a colleague of mine shared with me how they had had one of those “ahah” moments … after reading the book “The Climate Wars”, by Gwynne Dyer.
He saw that WE REALLY should be concerned, and he’s not the only one.
“Anyone still complacent about climate change will find Climate Wars instructive and disturbing. These articulate insights into climate geopolitics by Gwynne Dyer are an important tool for understanding why the climate challenge is big, hard, and vital to human survival – yet soluble if we pay attention now.” –Amory B. Lovins, Time magazine’s Hero of the Environment, author of Capitalism as if the World Matters, and Chairman & Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute.
If the past ideas and behaviors about “wealth” have led us into a mess … what or how can we relate to wealth in a responsible way, because that is in my opinion the only way that wealth can be realized.