Monday, June 28, 2010

Fantasy Income

As Einstein said, everything in life is relative, and one’s income is no exception. While the vast majority of the world lives with an income that is below poverty level (eating only one small meal a day), there are others who make up the jet set and fly first class across the planet to share dinner with a friend. Who is happiest? Hard to say, for income ultimately has little to do with happiness. It’s all relative.

The income of many corporate executives boggles the mind. Newspapers refer to these salaries as ‘breathtaking,” “mind-numbing,” “eye-popping,” and “scandalous.” While it takes courage and dedication to be the top person in today’s major corporations, shareholders still have a hard time grasping that the CEO is worth $10 million a year before benefits. No one really knows if these corporate officers are really happy or not.

School teachers have dreams of sharing and shaping the future of the young generations. They put in as many hours as the CEO’s, and in today’s world struggle along with kids against drug and alcohol use, the violence and abnormal sex presented by TV, disintegrated family lives, a multitude of languages, and poverty life-styles. The daunting challenge of a teacher’s work environment would destroy anyone not truly dedicated to teaching. Income counts to a teacher, but it does not control the final choice to teach. Almost every-body agrees that teachers are way underpaid. Their satisfaction comes from nurturing the future the best they can under the circumstances, not from their income. Doctors and dentists have the amazing distinction of not blinking an eye at charging a poor person an entire year’s income for healing or ‘fixing’ them. True, the doctors do have medical school bills and technical equipment to pay for. However, the poor person can experience more pain from the dentist describing the new yacht he bought then he does from having his tooth drilled. When they go home at night, who is happiest? There’s no way to tell. Money doesn’t buy happiness, it’s only a tool.

Although the grass on the other side of the fence always looks greener, following one’s own dreams of creativity and service, and loving your fellow humans just the way they are, remains the most exciting, happiest way to live one’s life. Making decisions based on income alone leads down a pathway of defeat. Loving the income you have right now magnetically can attract more, and the loving adds the happiness.

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