Love of Money and the Love of God
Throughout human history, saints and mystics have stated that Love of money is not compatible with the love of God. One has to choose one or the other.
The question that comes to mind of average humans is that, one does need money even to survive and it needs due importance. The saints do not say that one must not work for one’s living. At the same time, they warn against money becoming a primary pursuit. Rather their message is that love God and do the right thing devoting your self sincerely to your allotted work and duty while leaving results in hands of Almighty.
When one depends on Him as one may on a powerful father, He provides whatever money is necessary for one’s journey in life, to each according to their needs and mission. On the other hand, if one ignores the Almighty and sets about acquiring wealth one may not succeed and become miserable from want or one may accumulate more than necessary for one’s well being and become miserable because of that, for as said in an earlier post,
Wealth is like food
Just the right amount does much good
Take in too much and the misery is huge
When one depends on the Lord and pursues one’s journey in life attempting to do the right thing, in the eyes of the Lord, to one’s best understanding then the Lord provides the amount of wealth that meets our present needs and long term good, to each according to their unique journey..
What about those who claim to be spiritual teachers and are pursuing as well as accumulating wealth? The most famous of mystic masters through the ages - Buddha, Jesus, Kabir and others have warned humans to beware of false spiritual teachers. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing. If one submits to them they shall devour one like wolves so that one shall lose peace and goodness of this life as well as the next.
A similar test applies to political leaders who accumulate wealth. Beware of them. If elected to power, do not expect any public service out of them. At best they shall make you poor class if you were middle class and at worst make you a destitute homeless on the street and then imprison or fine you because of that.
There is an army of spiritual teachers, politicians and social workers out there who collect wealth by exploiting society and live luxurious life styles. It is this latter kind that mislead humans into misery. Yesterday one was imprisoned for twenty years in North India for rapes. He awaits trial in numerous other cases including murders and castration of many. He came to court in one of the most expensive cars around. He has several more. These latter are criminals making fools of gullible in the name of God. They would just as easily take to another path of crime according to situation. The Times of India has a report today on another Baba called Icchadari Baba who ran a sex racket in hidden corners of his temples. He was arrested in 2010. Recently he came out of prison and began another racket of a fraud ponzy scheme providing fake jobs to gullible aspirants. He has been arrested again. All this is no doubt very sad but it is an unfortunate fact of human society that some take to crime. May they too after undergoing suffering because of it emerge to make righteous humans some day.
Buddha, Jesus and Kabir did not accumulate any wealth and lived simply. In recent times there have been Gandhi, Vinoba Bhave, Babaji Haidakhan, Neem Karoli Baba and numerous others who did likewise living simply sans any wealth or palatial lodgings. Gandhi walked on foot to take on the mighty British Empire and won. Vinoba Bhave walked the length and breadth of India on foot and convinced many rich landowners to share with the impoverished. Babaji Haidakhan had many wealthy followers who brought him much wealth but he directed them to use that money for construction of monasteries or hospitals and continued to live simply in a small single room. He did not acquire expensive cars but walked most of the time instead. In early eighties he came to visit this author in Delhi from Nainital, due to old connections, when this author was a professor of engineering. He came walking accompanied by an older mystic and had no possession on him. He returned the same way.
Spiritual leaders, just as saints may not confine themselves to spiritual teachings alone but often take on other pursuits such as environment, politics etc. as well to improve well being of millions. They may specialize in one or other area, just as the gods in mythology and universe do. They succeed in their mission without any wealth just as Gandhi succeeded in freeing the world of the mighty British colonial empire after giving up all his wealth walking on foot with a stick and with a single garment on his frail frame.
Millions of followers of the now imprisoned rapist Baba are heart broken. Where did they go wrong? They have to look into their hearts for that. When one loves God truly, one will find a true teacher if necessary, else try and include as much truth on your lips and compassion in your heart as possible and the trees of the forest and flowers of the fields shall be the books that shall guide your journey through the universe filled with joy and beauty. May your be one such dear reader, if you were patient enough to read through this note and perhaps tell others too about it to save them from wolves that roam about in sheep’s clothing.