With a billionaire real estate tycoon occupying America’s highest office, the effects of riches upon the soul are a reasonable concern for all of us little guys. After all, one incredibly wealthy soul currently holds our country in his hands. According to an apocryphal exchange between F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway, the only difference between the rich and the rest of us is that they have more money. But is that the only difference?
Remaining silent about the U.S.-led War Against the World (on behalf of capitalism and neoliberalism) took away this nation’s soul long before rolling over for the Idiot of Orange.
In fact, ignoring the tripartite founding sins of white male property-owning supremacy while embracing an “exceptional” heritage pretty much tied up the soul thing when European colonizers, first began bleating “Christianity! Salvation! and Convert the Savages!” as they hit the shores of the greatest con humanity has ever seen.
The article states wealth isn’t necessarily bad, but correlates with vice.
“The point is not necessarily that wealth is intrinsically and everywhere evil”
Really? The concept of wealth is based on the premise that natural resources are limited, and the concept is meaningless unless there is poverty for comparison. If you give away your wealth, as Pope Francis suggests, it isn’t wealth anymore. And if you give away part of it, you have decided not to give away all of it; hence you have decided that those other would-be recipients of your money are not worthy of it. Therefore you believe that (at least some) poor people are less worthy than yourself, and yes, therefore wealth is intrinsically evil.
Or, since you refer to Jesus, he said it is not possible to serve God and mammon, and since only God is good, serving mammon must be bad.
Or as Mother Teresa said, give till it hurts.
The more democracy, the less wealth inequality and vis.
How many Millionaires now populate the US Congress?
More than half of Congress are millionaires!
More to the point… there are over 500 billionaires in the USA. 540 actually.
To paraphrase “Who loves ya baby?” >>> “Who owns ya baby?” Said to Congressmen by … their ‘friends’!
I wonder if this isn’t putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. Their statistics apparently show a correlation between having money and having problems, but maybe it’s the pre-existing problems (insecurities?) that fuel
a drive to accumulate wealth rather than the wealth per se causing the problems. IMHO, Tweetle-Dumb’s extreme narcissism and need to flaunt his wealth (as so accurately depicted in Trudeau’s graphic novel ‘HUGE’, for example) are the result of an extremely traumatic childhood, not the direct result of his having (or at least owing) a great deal of money.
These same deep insecurities resulting from a traumatic childhood also fuel a desire for power – the ability to control others to prevent them from harming you – so it’s no wonder that the Fat Cats with lots of money also want to control the government, and since so many of those whose egos push them to seek public office are driven by the same insecurities that wealth & power seem to assuage, they in turn are easily corrupted.
Most of the wealthy DO “give their money away as fast as they can”.
During the past four decades they have formed foundations and think tanks that are soaking up boatloads of their money 24/7. Much of that money buys and influences politicians to legislate to benefit the 1% at the expense of the 99%.
Until we the people stop voting for politicians owned by the 1% and their corporations, and stop voting for initiatives funded by the 1% and their corporations, it won’t matter how much money they give away…most of it will continue to go to places that increases their wealth at our expense.
Money is just paper. Nothing of worth backs it…it’s just a game we all play. The rules will change one day-yen, ruble-then where will the dollar rich be with there millions, etc?
A wonderfully refreshing and timely article. I love it! It reinforces a lifetime of observation and experience for me. Thanks, CD.
By God, and in the name of Jesus Christ, thank you Charles Mathewes and Evan Sandsmark for writing/publishing this historical article. In these (grotesquely dark) times, may we eventually see more and more of such shared Truth rise to exponential forefronts.
Reflections: Rich Passages Through Needles:
In the present, a “rich” “den of thieves” persists in maliciously premeditated mockery – but not only in “house[s] of prayer”; for now, their soullessly hoaxed ideology (as if a religion in itself) has been firmly planted (“that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect”) in media and coordinated governmental campaigns worldwide. To them, as they believe, their time has come. To those on the outside (of earthly mansions), watching, suffering, and rising (spiritually), many know that this very history was written of – thousands of years ago.
Greed is one of the Seven Deadly Sins. Envy is another.
Wealth, like anything a person acquires, is, in and of itself, value neutral. What matters is how it is acquired, and how it is used. If it is acquired without force or fraud, great - it’s fairly won. Use it how you see fit, as long as you don’t use it to actively harm others.
As for the authors, religious studies is the studies of all the false myths people tell themselves for comfort. If it makes you feel better to think the rich are more prone to evil than others, enjoy your particular myth. Most individuals, if given power (which is just wealth in another form) will use it to the detriment of others. It’s not limited to the wealthy.
All Sides (One Goal)
The More We Live (Yes): Why? When?
“Its a wonderful life” is a great movie. And the movie centers around a bank vs a struggling savings and loan------and we find out what happens to this community if the savings and loan went out of business. In our country today the savings and loan went out of business a long time ago.
Beautiful. Thanks. The rich also make life even more miserable for the poor when they could actually help relieve suffering. Plus, in my experience, they complain about everything; nothing is ever good enough. Maybe that’s their karma.
It’s both, as I can see from my rich friends. Certain kinds of people end up with lots of money, and thus power, but power itself has a kind of intoxicating effect. This is not limited to wealth as a form of power, but includes political power and even intellectual power. While it’s hard to put a finger on what the nature of this intoxication is, words like “hubris” and the Christian sin of"pride" have been used to try to encapsulate it. Recently some attempts have been used to apply notions of psychopathology. Here is one paper, as an example. I have experienced this intoxication myself in the insight gained through intellectual pursuits which, while always limited and incomplete, can produce the dellusion/illusion of true understanding.
Agreed. They hate people because they’re … recalcitrant. They - usually their employees - don’t do what they want them to do. It’s true that people who have to suffer under the yoke of others manifest all kinds of pathologies, but the rich are completely unwilling to look at the role of property/ownership and their power in the pathology they are creating. Even if these people start out generous - and some of them do - they become bitter and mean spirited in the end.
Live Simply so others might simply live, I always liked that one. I heard it’s a Mother Theresa quote.
Like the opioids it starts as what is nessessary then morphs into an addiction that only more can alleviate. I see those that keep grabbing for more money more power as addicts in a way.