Abuse of financial power, such as manipulating, exploiting, or making false promises with the carrot and stick trick will downgrade your spirituality and earn you some tough future life karma. Most people who have studied the concept of karma and reincarnation understand this, even if they don’t always live it.
Our empirical research involving karma, reincarnation, fate, money, and spirituality over the past 25 years includes findings that may surprise you because they contrast with widely held “Eastern mysticism” ideals (which are often misinterpretations of authentic ancient ideals, and largely spiritual dogma, in our view). Below we dismantle 5 myths related to money and spirituality.
1. Although you may favor an ascetic lifestyle, giving away all personal property and wealth, it won’t necessarily make you more spiritual. It’s just as likely to cause stress and cloud your spirituality due to a lack of resources and finances than a lifestyle with an overabundance of material things and wealth that could demand too much of your time.
The key is balance, and it’s even possible to be a billionaire and be more spiritually aware and more at peace than a pauper ascetic. Needless self-sacrifice can cause bad karma; put the excessive idealism aside and consider if you have hidden false guilt about wealth.
2. True or false: a multi-millionaire owner of a company will always avoid doing anything that will put his wealth in jeopardy; he will put the prospect of increased wealth over honesty.
The answer is, it depends. There are dishonest operators in every industry, but it’s simply not true that every multi-millionaire is evil and will automatically behave badly if they think they can get away with it. Overall, the rich aren’t any less honest than the poor, and it’s unfair and naive to believe that anyone who “makes it” does so through deception and theft. It’s best to avoid being snowed by class warfare, which pits the poor against those who have more.
3. A preference for living among “the people,” in the middle class is fine, but to label high society as a rotten place to live, as if only the soulless inhabit that realm, displays blatant intolerance and a distorted perspective. There are good and evil people in every class throughout society, and having more resources alone won’t make you a bad person.
4. Despite common claims to the contrary, acquiring money, in itself, can be a spiritual and fulfilling endeavor, particularly if you ultimately help others through that acquisition. There’s nothing wrong with being loaded, as long as you don’t neglect other areas of your life, like your health and family, and your conduct remains honorable.
5. There’s a prevailing notion in the New Age community that condemns business and capitalism, and instead promotes an (impossibly idealistic) alternative model where everyone strives for a “spiritual planet,” “supports one another,” and “economic justice” (i.e allowing government to confiscate private wealth for re-distribution as they see fit) prevails.
Unfortunately, the proponents fail to see that a larger government is the problem, not the solution, and we are already striving to support one another through free enterprise and free-choice charity.
As much as we’d like it to be true, there isn’t and never will be Utopia on Earth and there will always be “good” and “bad” forces on this planet. The law of polarity is frequently overlooked, as is the law of karma (as well as common sense personal responsibility, including taking care of your family).
The best you can do is to help yourself and those around you to be the best they can be. Your role in society may very well be to make a lot of money. Even if you don’t give a lot away, spending it will still help others.
Money is not the root of all evil, and working for free isn’t always practical. You must have a healthy exchange of some sort. The current prevailing economic system (American capitalism, not “crony capitalism” or other unfair practices), while not perfect, is the most freedom-oriented, fair, and practical and allows for such an exchange, and money and spirituality can be wonderful partners if you allow them to be.
Copyright © 2012 Scott Petullo, Stephen Petullo