Unless I completely shut myself off from the world, and there are stretches when I do, there is an endless barrage of what I need, who I should listen to, and the various practiced steps to success, sexy, happiness, the top of the heap.
Accepting nothing less than the stars seems to be the goal when my outside speakers are turned on.
The top is where the power lives. True happiness abounds, and the day-to-day struggles no longer exist once one “makes it.” The world looks to be in mad pursuit of the gold or the drugged acceptance that their ladder will never reach far enough. There’s not a whole lot in the middle.
Haves and have-nots. I’ve always disliked that expression. What exactly do the “haves” have? Money?
Of course, it’s money. No one ever uses “haves and have-nots” when discussing human connection. Good friends, a fulfilling job, stimulating hobbies.
“Have” refers to money and means.
I’ve never met a single person for whom money alone made them happy. Not one person. In fact, if someone is miserable, lost, ugly or lonely, money makes it worse. So who are these “haves” and why does our culture tell us to keep reaching for membership?
As westerners, we look to countries with little money and few conveniences as “have-nots.” And yet, many of those communities deal with disaster and distress better than any of us could muster. They seem connected to a past, a vibrant culture, the beauty of their land and traditions.
But, they don’t have a lot of money, they don’t have a Starbucks, so we donate, pity-nod and declare they are “have-nots.”
I am not glamorizing poverty, nor am I saying that difficult living conditions are ideal. I am grateful for my roof and my bed. But it’s not about a roof and a bed. If it were so many of the declared “have-nots” would be promoted to “haves.”
It’s about the mountain, the heap of money and the shiny car. “Have” has become “more.”
An example: Having an education used to be an achievement. Scholars were fed and sheltered out of respect for their knowledge. School is now a business. It has become about the job, more money, more status. The simplicity of knowing stuff is only valued if it’s tied to expensive shoes or a corner office.
If I live in a community and I have hundreds of healing recipes stored in my brain, if I can keep my people well and energized, there is value in that. I “have” something. I shouldn’t need to be the vice president of a drug company with a house in the Hamptons.
I love soft sheets as much as the next person, but perhaps we need to step back and figure out what exactly it is we are climbing and scratching to perch atop.
I’m worried if we don’t self-correct money will be all we have left.
My thoughts from the laundry room. Under The Stars.