Is it unspiritual to be poor?

Some religious people and theologians believe that it is unspiritual to be poor. They argue that poor people are unaware of the spiritual principles by which our wants and needs are satisfied. Wealth, they say, is a cosmic ‘thank you’ for our contribution to the world. If we have plenty, it’s because we give plenty. If not, it’s because we don’t give enough.

What nonsense! Do cosmic ‘thank you’s’ only come in material form? Does every wealthy person offer above average service to humanity?

What about those who inherit wealth, hoard it, or make their money by trading arms, child pornography, tobacco products, illegal drugs or people trafficking and so on? What about those whose businesses or investments pollute the oceans or destroy the rain forests? And isn’t this insulting to the millions who work hard to provide for themselves and their families without ever becoming rich, many of whom are far more spiritually attuned than the mega-rich?

Spirituality and wealth are not related. You can be poor and unspiritual or rich and unspiritual; you can be rich and spiritual or poor and spiritual. What matters is the consciousness with which you approach life.

However, spirituality and prosperity are related. Spiritually aware people manifest what they need, use it wisely, share it with others and feel good about what they do. That should be your aim too. Enjoy what life has to offer, but don’t get so caught up in worldly matters that you lose sight of the bigger picture.

Do you have to be poor to be spiritual?

Most of the great spiritual teachers (including Yeshua of Nazareth, Prophet Mohamed and the Buddha) had few possessions. Some gave up great wealth to spread their teachings.

So do you have to live in poverty to be spiritual? Not at all. There is nothing inherently spiritual about living on the bread line. Even the Buddha, who turned his back on inherited wealth to live as a humble monk, taught that it is not necessary to deprive ourselves. It is selfishness and greed – not material sufficiency or comfort – that clash with spiritual values.


©David Lawrence Preston, 7.2.2017

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Money Consciousness

Economists think of prosperity as money in the bank and how much we consume. Perhaps most of us do. But this is not the full picture. Prosperity is much more than this. It is a way of living, being and thinking, not just money and possessions.

Even so, it is important to have a healthy attitude towards money:

  • It has energy.
  • It is a symbol of what natural resources and human ingenuity can produce to satisfy our wants and needs.
  • It’ a means to an end, a lubricant which smoothes the flow of goods and services.
  • Moreover, there’s plenty of it in the world, and it’s available to everyone who is in charge of their own thinking, can use their imagination and act for themselves.

Money in itself is useless; it has no value unless put to good use. Hoarding it cuts off the flow, so keep it circulating. Turn it into people helping others and doing and making things so they too can be prosperous and happy.

Prosperity comes through you, not from you. Only the barriers in your own consciousness can prevent it flowing as it should. When it flows, everything works out for the best.

Manage your money wisely

Managing your money is a skill like any other. You’ll only make the best of it when you know how to spend, save, invest, distribute and use it wisely.

Think of those lottery and games show winners, footballers and pop stars from poor backgrounds who struggle to hang on to their wealth. Rather than using it sensibly, they squander it and find they are worse off than before. Some spiritually-inclined people are just as foolish, they think it demeaning to take an interest in their finances. But there is nothing unspiritual about taking care of your money as long as you see it for what it is and use it to benefit others as well as yourself.


©David Lawrence Preston, 2.12.2016

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Managing your money – ten golden rules

  1. Know where you stand

Be aware of your financial position. How much do you have? If you owe money, how much do you owe? If you’re in trouble, acknowledge it. Acceptance of your situation doesn’t necessarily mean liking it, but it does put you in the right frame of mind to do something about it.

 2. Put some of your earnings aside

After the various government bodies, the bank, building society, supermarket, utility companies etc. and your family have taken their share, keep some for yourself. Open a special savings account. Deposit 10% of your income there. If you can’t afford 10%, save 5%, but specify a future date on which you will increase it, and stick to it.

Putting a proportion of your earnings aside in this way is the first step to accumulating wealth. Interest accumulates. If you place regular sums in an interest-earning account, before long a stream of wealth flows in your direction.

  1. Avoid borrowing

Borrowing has its place as long as it is for long-term purposes such as a house. Never rely on it to cover short-term consumption. I know a man who made this mistake. He borrowed £10,000 at a high rate of interest, secured on the family home. He told the finance company it was for ‘home improvements’, but spent half of it on a foreign holiday. Five years later, when he lost his job, he could no longer afford the repayments, and the family lost their home.

4. Control your outgoings

Make a list of necessary expenditures. Budget for the essentials – food, accommodation, heating and lighting, clothing, transport etc. Examine your list to see where savings can be made, and take the necessary steps. Then, if possible, allow a little for pleasure.

5. Pay off your debts

Include in your budget provision to pay off any debts. Start by destroying your credit cards. These pernicious pieces of plastic give the illusion that you’re not really spending, but of course you are, and at a very high rate of interest too.

Remember, money is a form of energy. If you’re in debt, you have been taking more energy from others than you have been giving. You will never have security and peace of mind until you’ve paid it back.

Making small, regular payments builds trust. Don’t hide from your creditors and don’t make false promises.


  1. Invest prudently

Make each £, € or $ work hard for you. Invest it where it will earn a good return within taking unnecessary risks. History shows that the best long-term investment you can make is in land and property, especially your own home.

  1. Protect your assets

For example, if you lend money, ask for security and make sure the borrower can repay. If investing in a business, be realistic. Stick to products and services you’re familiar with at first. Invest only where you can reasonably expect a fair return, where the principal is safe, and where you can recoup your investment if you need to. As you gain experience, you may be prepared to take greater risks, but do your homework thoroughly. Never gamble more than you can afford to lose, and research the risks before you invest. There are plenty of schemers and con artists around!

  1. Insure wisely

Insure your home and possessions against fire, flood, burglary and theft, etc. Prepare for your retirement by taking out a pension plan (which is, incidentally, a tax-efficient way to save). Make sure your family will be provided for in case anything happens to you.

Make a will: should anything happen to you, this will ensure that your wealth is passed on to your loved ones as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  1. Magnify your earning power

 Use the Eight Steps to Success to magnify your earning power. Identify your financial goals and implement changes. Acquire new knowledge, personal qualities, and marketable skills. Use the I-T-I-A Formula to assimilate your goals into your consciousness. Then take action and keep going. Nothing works if you don’t.

  1. Keep your own counsel

Your financial affairs are your business, and no-one else’s. Discuss them with no-one (other than properly appointed professional advisers and officials). No matter how well off you are, never boast. You never know who might be listening, and there are plenty of people willing to help you part with your money once they know you have some: witness the thousands of begging letters received by lottery winners, sports and rock stars and other wealthy people.

Observe these ten ‘rules’ and you can rest assured that you are making the most of your money, and your future prosperity will be assured.

©David Lawrence Preston, 18.6.2016

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MoneyThere is plenty of nonsense talked about money. Sigmund Freud likened it to faeces: he said we savour our own, but are suspicious of (and disgusted by) other peoples. If we have what he called an ‘anal retentive’ type personality, we try to hold on to it at all costs.

There can be no peace of mind unless you are at ease with money. Money (usually lack of it) is associated with of the majority of stress-related illness, marriage break-up, anxiety and depression, and so on.

So let’s get one thing straight. Money is a good thing. The days of the barter economy are long gone. Can you imagine having to grow your own food, make all your clothes from material you have woven yourself, build your own shelter and furniture, and then trade any surplus with your neighbours? You wouldn’t have much spare time!

Money has no value of its own. It is just a token invented for our convenience. Anything generally accepted as a means of exchange would have the same value. In the not so distant past, sweets and cigarettes have been used as means of exchange when the official currency of a country collapsed.

In a broader sense, money is a symbol of what natural resources coupled with human ingenuity and effort can produce. That’s why there’s never any shortage of money in the world. In his book, ‘Creating Affluence’, Dr Deepak Chopra tells how one of Marahishi Mahesh Yogi’s followers asked him where the money was coming from to establish a new transcendental meditation centre knowing there were no surplus funds in the kitty. Quick as a flash, the Maharishi replied, ‘Wherever it is at the moment.’

Beliefs and expectations around money

What governs your ability to attract money into your life is your attitude towards it and your expectations around it. This is the Law of Attraction operating in the universe.

If you consistently find yourself short of money and wish to change, the place to start your consciousness (your awareness and way of thinking).

Do any of the following beliefs ring true for you?

Money is the root of all evil

This phrase is actually misquoted: the correct version is ‘love of money is the root of all evil’. Many people still choose to believe this, but money itself is neutral – it can be harmful only in the wrong hands. In the right hands – yours – it can be an instrument for good.

Rich people are selfish and greedy, liars and cheats

Some are, but many are honest, hard working and provide a valuable service to society. Many poor people are like this too – and then some poor people are selfish and dishonest. It is not money itself that makes the difference, but one’s attitude towards it.

I don’t deserve to have money

 Why not? And if you don’t, who does? Why are they more deserving than you? What does ‘deserve’ mean anyway?

You have to be lucky to be rich

 You create your own circumstances through your thoughts, words and actions. Good and bad luck tend to cancel each other out in the course of a lifetime. Your aim is to make the most of the good ‘luck’ which comes your way.

If you had more money, you wouldn’t have time to enjoy it

In the film ‘Casablanca’ Sam the pianist is offered double his existing pay to move to a rival bar. He declines. ‘I like it fine here,’ he said. ‘Besides, I don’t have time to spend the money I already earn.’

It may have been true for him, but for most of us it’s an excuse. Money creates opportunities. If you had lots of it, you could spend your time differently, give it to charity or help out your family and friends. New choices would be open to you.

It is unspiritual to be well off

This is an interesting one. It’s true that many of the great teachers had few possessions – but they were not spiritual just because they renounced material things. Their spirituality was founded on a grasp of deeper universal truths, including serving others.

There is nothing inherently spiritual about living below the poverty line, dependent on others. And how can you give to others if you have nothing to give?

An abundance of money is beyond most people’s experience. It makes them feel uncomfortable. Some are even frightened of the power and responsibilities it brings.

Money is a means to an end – that’s all

The best way to think of money is as a means to an end. To seek money for its own sake rather than concentrating on what you have to offer is like putting the cart before the horse. Find what you love to do, put your heart and soul into it, and let prosperity flow in your direction.

Become a master of money, don’t let money be your master. Remember King Midas? In his greed, he asked for the power to turn everything he touched into gold. His life became a misery and he begged to be released from his ‘curse’. So learn to be at ease with money. Use what you have wisely and enjoy it!

© David Lawrence Preston, 17.6.2016

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