Money has never been a problem for Indian spirituality.
Every day one comes across news about hoarding of unaccounted (or black) money. With rocketing financial abundance the evils of wealth are rising too.
But is it inevitable?
Can’t money be earned by pure unadulterated means?
What is the reason for this insane obsession with money?
Money has never been a problem for Indian spirituality. According to the Indian wisdom, it was one of the four pillars of life. The first one was dharma, religion; the second was artha, wealth; then came kama, enjoyment; and last, moksha, the liberation. Money was merely a means to lead a religious life. Interestingly, donation, dana was essential part of making money.
According to Manusmriti, one-sixth of one’s income should be given in charity. But now money is no longer the means, it has become a goal in itself. People now donate if they derive any income tax benefit out of it.
I came across an insightful statement from the Upanishad, which in translation means: Money is purified by selfless donations and being content. The thought that money can be purified itself is revolutionary. It means money becomes impure because of the means and ways employed by man to earn it. Money can be purified at two levels: social and psychological. Many people play a role to enrich a businessman’s business, it is not one man’s efforts. So one must share one’s earnings with those who have helped one to earn it.
The second part of the insight is more profound. It says, being content with what you have purifies the money earned. Contentment cleans the mind, a it gets rid of greed, which may have pushed one to amass wealth.
Osho analyses why money has become so important to modern man. “Money is not just there outside in currency notes, it is something to do with your inner, your mind and attitudes. Money is your love of things; money is your escape from people; money is your security against death; money is your effort to control life; money is a thousand and one things. Money is not just concerned with currency notes; otherwise things would have been very easy.
People who are afraid of love become possessive about money. People who love do not become possessive about money.
If it is there, it can be used. If it is not there, that too is okay because love is such a kingdom that no money can purchase it.” So the bottom line is, try to increase your love at all levels than increasing the wealth.