MOVING ON…the Soul of Money and Thanksgiving
I recently attended the International Coach Federation conference in St. Louis and was blessed to hear Lynn Twist speak on The Soul of Money, her new book. Lynn gives off the presence of a Mother Theresa. She is a small woman whose gentleness and compassion is apparent. I wouldn’t describe her as a dynamic speaker, but rather as a gentle woman with a powerful message.
The most profound statement that got my attention immediately was her message that when we think of any person or any people as ‘poor’ we are collapsing who they are with what they have.
There is much cultural suffering around money and we were reminded that as Buddha said, all suffering is a lie. Money was actually designed in order to facilitate the sharing of goods. For example, if I wanted a chicken and had shoes to give in exchange for that chicken; I had to find someone with a chicken. What if they didn’t need shoes? So if they needed a pig and the owner of the pig needed shoes…..well, we had a deal sort of. But it began to get complex….so money was created…everyone had money and everyone could use that money with whomever they wanted to for whatever they wanted to.
So where did the current reality of being driven by money come from? Perhaps this is where we have arrived in our desire for ‘more’, our focus on ‘me, me, me’? After all, we give money all the meaning it has for us. We give money more meaning than life. Lynn says that scarcity is a lie; it is really an unconscious and unexamined way of looking at life. Truth: we value outer riches more than inner riches.
Let’s take a look at two definitions: Citizen — one who takes responsibility for the whole community. Consumer: one who uses and destroys. How are you using your money; in the pursuit of which?
Today each person over the age of 16 has an average credit card debt of $9300. I believe our individual share of the national debt comes to about $337,000 each! This is a definite energy drain for me. I don’t need, want or like this hanging over my head. I look forward to social security someday. I also want a safe world and a green world for my children and grandchildren and yours.
Here are three of the toxic myths Lynn Twist describes. See where they measure on your toxic-meter.
There is not enough to go around
Money is better
It’s just the way it is, learn to live with it.
If you agree with the above, then perhaps you don't have a relationship with none — only a relationship with more. Think about that. What is your relationship with none; now think about those in other worlds, or even post-Katrina, and their relationship with none.
What we appreciate, appreciates.
Another profound thought: Letting go of getting more of what I don’t need frees up oceans of energy to do more with what I already have.
There are two branches of gratitude: (1) Gratefulness: my bowl of life is almost overflowing and (2) Thanksgiving: my bowl has overflowed and I want to share it. This takes me back to # 1.
You can’t get to abundance through the doorway of more, only through enough, sufficiency, and appreciation. At this Thanksgiving season, what can you share, how can you share of your overflow, of your soul and of your money?
We are so blessed in this culture, how can we add to the blessings of others?