What Is True Wealth?


The term wealth indicates great value. But how should this be measured? Is financial worth the only measure? Is it even the most important? To answer these questions, let us consider the following cases.

1. William and Todd lost a fortune through similar circumstances. Which one is wealthier? William became depressed and attempted suicide. He subsequently was admitted to a mental institution where he is cared for and counselled. Todd on the other hand started to re-build. Clearly Todd has something more valuable than William who could not see a brighter tomorrow.

2. George and Stephen have been assessed to be approximately equivalent in terms of financial value. Who is wealthier? George has a fantastic relationship with his wife and children. Stephen is going through a painful divorce, and his relationship with his children is strained, to the point where he takes medication for the emotional stress he is burdened with. Clearly George who has the better relationships has the better quality of life, even though both he and Stephen have the same financial net value.

From these two examples, we see that value is not only found in one’s material worth, but in other aspects of one’s life having to do with character and relationships. Also, it is evident that monetary value is not the most important measure for determining one’s true value when compared against hope (as in the 1st scenario), joy and happiness (as in 2nd scenario). True wealth then, must be measured in terms of the quality of one’s character, and of one’s relationships. The more your character tends towards seeing the positives over the negatives and towards empowering you to attain the best through noble values, the wealthier you are. Also, the more positive your relationships are with others, the wealthier you are. You would be even wealthier still when you are able to influence these people to move toward this kind of wealth. When these things are in place, monetary value tends to become easier to attain.

With the above in mind, we can begin to envision what true wealth ultimately looks like.

The truly wealthy person is one who is able make something out of nothing. The truly wealthy person adds value to his environment (inclusive of people). Take away his money and he will recover. Place him in a desert, and he’ll not only flourish, but he’ll also bring beauty and fertility to the barren land. He builds relationships with others that serve as springboards to take himself and the others to new heights. While he lives, there is no end to his joy.

That is true wealth!

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