The economic worth of I

One of the constant questions that arises in people’s mind when it comes to healing or therapy or even investing in spiritual courses/activities is, how will we benefit from it (or the unsaid, is this worth the expense). This often makes me sad in more ways than I let on. But I see this as a societal issue and not as someone’s personal issue.

As a society, all of us grow up associating some economic worth to every activity. Most of what we do has to do with money. The education system itself raises us to be productive clogs who perform certain activities to contribute to the smooth functioning of the economy. And so by the time we have completed our graduation, all we can think of ourselves is in terms of our economic worth. What we can earn is how we measure our worth. All I need, to be sure of this is to look around at ourselves and the people around us. What is the most common question we ask a stranger- “what do you do?” I have written more about this in the wasting my day blog post.

The thing is because of this economic association with personal worth, most people end up only spending on activities that enhance their professional skills and look good on a resume ( which results in economic benefits) or on things that bring us instant gratification like eating out, clothes, etc. But in the end, aren’t both only about how the world looks at you? Will they truly bring you lasting joy? If you had to measure your worth, would you do it with money or with the attributes of love, goodness, compassion, etc. that you possess? Our children give us no monetary benefits. It is a hug from them that fills our heart. What brings more peace, money in the bank and a lonely child or maybe a few thousands lesser but time with your child in the park? I really wish sometimes that I could shake people out of this strange self-absorbed existence and make them address the impermanence of it all.

I am not saying money is bad, it is simply a means, a product itself. Why should we spend on healing, therapy and spiritual pursuits? Simply because they are not an expense, they are probably the best investment you can make. Even better than life insurance because what you learn is something you can carry beyond this body. Nothing else on earth can allow you that. The more we invest in this personality, chase it, the more we lose out on the larger picture of our place in the universe- the real reason why we are on this earth.

The power of knowledge is limited but the power of awareness, inquiry and expansion is limitless. Knowing how to control your own mind, manage your own health and bring in your happiness is invaluable. If we keep looking at ourselves as simply money-generating and consuming creatures, we will never live up to our true human or soul potential.

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