22 May 2012

Rule #3: Learn What Money Is, What it Isn't, and What it Does.

I'm not sure if this rule is the third most important rule, but given the importance of money in our lives, I figured I should say something about it.  As Zig Ziglar says, "Money isn't everything, but it's reasonably close to oxygen."

Learn what money is, what it isn't, and what it does.


Money is a tool that acts as a neutral medium of exchange.  It also is a personality amplifier. 

Money is not the root of all evil, nor is the Bible correct when it says the love of money is the root of all evil.

Money makes you more of what you are.  If you're a giving person, money makes you a bigger giver.  If you're a miser, you become a bigger miser.  If you're foolish, money makes you more foolish.  If you're wise, money makes you wiser.

The exchange of money allows two people with very little in common to exchange the fruits of their labor.  A farmer can buy a new suit from a well-fed tailor.  That is the magic of money.

The curse of money is that it affects your emotional state.  It can change relationships.  "The borrower is slave to the lender."  Christmas feels different when your brother owes you a few thousand dollars.

Money, being a tool, means that people can use it as they wish.  Just as a firearm in the hands of a criminal can be used for evil, the same weapon in the hands of a mother defending her children can be used for good.  Free will (and thus sin) is the root of all evil.  Free will is also the root of all good.  Money can be used for both.  It can be used to bribe police to ignore crimes, or it can be used to set up endowments for the arts.

Remember that blaming your problems on money (your lack of, or someone else's abundance of) runs afoul Rule #2.

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