How to manage your money Pt 1

How to Manage your money

Money is neither god nor devil,
but a form of energy.
Like love or fear,
it can serve you or bind you,
depending upon how you manage it.
By clarifying your goals
and using your gifts,
you can make good money,
doing what you enjoy,
while serving
the highest calling of your soul.
Using money wisely, and well,
you share your material
and spiritual wealth
with the world.

The Flow of Money

In the context of personal growth, money is more than a means of exchange or ready cash. Although most of us have experienced periods of financial scarcity, our relationship to money reflects our relationship to energy and service and spirit, our ability to function in society, our openness to pleasure and abundance, our reality check. Money mirrors the quality of our interactions with other people, our ability to receive and to give. Money represents survival, security, safety, shelter, food, family, livelihood.

More complex, it turns out, than balancing your checkbook.

If spiritual life begins on the ground, money forms a foundation on which to build. Shivapuri Baba, an Indian Saint and yogi who walked around the world on a pilgrimage when he was nearly 120 years old, was once asked about the best way to begin a spiritual life. He advised, “first build a foundation—manage your money.” (He had acquired a small bag of gems in his younger years, through hard work and simple living; he drew upon these gems as needed.)

Money in Everyday Life

Pam, a friend who read an early version of this manuscript, said, “I don’t think that the chapter [in Everyday Enlightenment], How To Manage Your Money, is as important as the chapters about taming our mind or facing our fears—” Abruptly, she looked at her watch. “Oh, my gosh, look what time it is! The bank’s closing in ten minutes!” Wondering about why money was so important, Pam had to run to the bank.

On the way to the bank, Pam later told me that she realized how much of her time, thoughts, and attention revolved around money—paying the bills, balancing checkbooks, discussing costs of the room addition for their growing family. After the bank, she went food shopping, then stopped by the furniture store to check prices on a new bed for one of her children. All activities dealing with money. Like Pam, most of us have money concerns of one kind or another—striving to make more, or make do with less—learning to live simply, comfortably, spiritually.

Poor people may be forced to think about money a lot of the time, related to food, shelter, subsistence, and survival. Rich people may also think about money a lot of the time, related to status, travel, freedom, influence, and options. But managing your money does not depend upon becoming wealthy or declaring vows of poverty. Rather, it is about creating stability and sufficiency—a balanced flow of monetary energy through your life. This kind of management liberates you from survival issues, so that money concerns no longer occupy your mind or monopolize your attention. When money flows in, you spend it in a matter-of-fact way where it needs to go, where it will do the most good. You pay bills gladly, knowing that your money helps to support other people who in turn provide services for you. If something breaks, you write a check and get it fixed without further concern. Free from cycles of scarcity, your attention can ascend to higher levels of awareness and experience.

Money is like sex;
you think a lot about it
when you don’t have it,
and think of other things
when you do.
—James Baldwin

Spiritual Stereotypes

You can probably conjure up images of pure and holy people quite easily—monks with begging bowls, Indian ascetics, priests and nuns from every tradition who have renounced money in order to live a more spiritual life free of worldly distractions. Images of Jesus expelling money changers from the temple and quotations about money being the root of all evil and rich men having a tough time entering heaven and the meek inheriting the earth are quite familiar. Such images and ideas help create stereotypes that equate poverty and spirituality in the minds of many.

I don’t like money
but it calms my nerves.
—Joe Louis

Managing your money begins by acknowledging any mixed feelings, guilt, or negativity you may have about money and about those who possess it in abundance. If you associate voluntary poverty with humility, goodness, and spirituality, then with what do you associate wealth? It is worth pondering, because what you believe about money will determine, in large part, your effectiveness in acquiring it. (Continued In How To Manage Your Money Pt 2…)

Authors Details: Dan Millman Website

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