The Huge Differences Between Money and Wealth –
And Why It’s Important to You

It is very unfortunate that money, wealth and business are not taught in schools.  If they were, many people would not end up with many of the problems that they do.  It would lead to happier, healthier people with a lower divorce rate.  I had to wait until I ‘grew up’ to learn anything about wealth and money, and paid many hundreds of dollars to buy books and attend various seminars etc., including a number taught by author Robert Kiyosaki.  (I am not recommending all of Kiyosaki’s information but I did learn some valuable things from him).

Many people think that money is simply cash.  But there is much more to money than that.  These days most money is never in the form of cash – it’s just a bunch of numbers sent by electronic means from one computer to another.

So, what is money?  As with many words, “money” can have a number of different meanings.

Here’s a definition for money which you may know:

Money: “A medium of exchange” 

Note that the medium doesn’t have to be in the form of notes or coins.  This definition means that money is a thing that is used to swap for another thing or service.

Here’s a definition for money that you probably haven’t heard of:

“Money is an idea, backed by confidence”. 

This definition was said by L. Ron Hubbard.  It much more fully defines what money is.  Money is just an IDEA.  A hundred dollar bill is just a piece of paper.  If you want to buy something with it, and the person you are buying from is not CONFIDENT that he also can buy something with that $100 bill, then it is not worth anything.  It is only the IDEA of the $100 bill and the confidence that people place in it that makes it worth anything.  This point may become more important to your survival at some time in the future.

For a fuller understanding of what money really is, I strongly urge you to read the article “I want the earth plus 5%”.

It may come as a surprise to many that money and wealth are not the same thing.  The dictionary gives a number of definitions for wealth, one of which is:

Wealth: “Having a large amount of money or possessions”. 

That is the definition that most people think of. However, I will give you another definition which is much, much more important to know:

Wealth: “The ability to survive a certain number of days forward”.

I learned this definition from author Robert Kiyosaki during a seminar called “Creating Wealth”.  For how long could you survive if your job ended today?

Note that in this definition of wealth, money may or may not be important.  At the moment, if you have a lot of money, low expenses and no debt, you can survive for a longer period of time than if you don't.  However, during certain times such as when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the people had no drinking water for at least five days, money may not have helped their chance of survival.  But having fresh drinking water on hand definitely would have.

It was probably Ron Hubbard who first pointed out that a prime purpose of life is to SURVIVE.  In our modernized world, it’s easy to forget this prime goal of life.  We feel that machines and maybe the government will look after us and we don’t have to worry about survival.  Television helps to give us other things to think about.  But only a few hundred years ago, our ancestors focused on survival – if they didn’t, they ended up dead.

Part of survival is moving away from pain and towards pleasure. First, we want to survive ourselves.  Later we may want to start a family and help them to survive.  Once that is handled, we may want to help the groups of people we are members of to survive, such as our friends and people we have a common tie with.  If all that gets handled, we may even want to do something to help mankind survive as a species.  And also help the animals, plants and earth to survive.

Let’s get back to that definition of wealth again, “Ability to survive a certain number of days forward”.

What do you need to survive?  You need drinkable water, food, shelter, clothing and the ability to keep clean. Nothing else.

Many people look at someone who is driving a Mercedes and wearing a Rolex watch as wealthy.  But will any of this help him directly to survive? Not much. In fact, because others will think that he is wealthy that person will likely end up spending even more money, for example, by being invited to expensive restaurants and being expected to have all the other things that go with being wealthy – the house/s, the holidays, the clothes – the list goes on and on.

Can a car help your chance of survival? Yes.  But an ordinary second hand car in decent condition will get you where you want to go just as fast as a new designer car.

Do fancy labels help survival? No.  In fact, they can decrease your chance of survival because most of them are designed to be dated quickly. So you have to buy more.  It’s better to pick one color and base your whole wardrobe around that color, and buy classic pieces that look good at any time.  For women, you will find that a wardrobe that is based on black is probably the cheapest of all, since everything goes with it and a cheap black outfit will generally look more expensive than an outfit of another color.  And everything goes with black.

Women especially have been programmed through TV and magazines to waste all their money on useless stuff like make-up, jewelery, household decorations etc.etc. This programming is done largely by men in big companies who don't care about women, just how much money they will make.

Have a look around at your possessions.  How many of them support your survival?

What have you spent money on that will bring in money later on?  When will you be financially free to not have to work for anyone?

Robert Kiyosaki gave a piece of good advice: Your luxuries should be paid for by your investments. If you don't have any investments, then you shouldn't buy any luxuries. A luxury is anything which does not directly contribute to survival.

Note: Education through the right seminars, books, training etc. DOES contribute towards survival.

Why do people spend money?

To remove pain.  That pain may be the need for a house or food.  But often the pain is something way down deep inside them. They spend money to fill up an empty feeling inside them, or boredom, or some other emotional reason.  The trouble is, that that does not usually remove the cause of the problem.

That’s one reason why most people spend 10% more than they make, no matter how much they earn. But if you want to get financially free so that you have freedom and are able to survive in rough times or when you get old (which you will, you know – most people don’t seem to know that), then you need to do at least two things:

  • Reduce your desires. It is easier to do this if you focus more on a personal relationship with God and on being of service to others (the children of God), than on material possessions.
  • Keep part of what you earn and put it into something that directly improves your ability to survive.

You may not consider yourself wealthy, but consider this: One billion people do not have clean water even within miles of their home, let alone running water. Two billion people do not have even a pit toilet and have to defecate on the ground. So, if you live in a country like the USA or Australia you are weatlhy, in that you have access to clean water and a toilet. More information at www.givewater.org.

The money you save should go into two different kinds of investments:

1. Those that create money for you.  Never, ever borrow money unless that money will in some way bring you in more money later on. All your luxuries should be paid for from your investments. Invest only in things that you have experience with. Practise “delayed satisfaction”. More information here.

2. Those that directly support your ability to survive.  These include:

    • A place to live.  If you own it, in most places this should be made out of concrete, not wood, because:
      • Termites don’t eat wood.
      • Concrete doesn’t rot.
      • Tornadoes are attracted to mobile homes, (probably because of the metal in them).
      • Mobile homes cause health problems from the degassing in the chipboard. Some mobile homes now make you sign a release that you won’t sue them if your home causes cancer.
      • Concrete homes are safer from hurricanes.
      • Good sound and temperature insulation.
      • Five star hotels are made of concrete. If it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for you

In the long run, it’s obviously best to own your own home. But that only make economic sense if you pay it off as soon as possible. To do that , you need to live in it for at least eight years, and preferably longer, before moving, partly because of the costs of selling (6%+), and the initial payments pay mostly only the interest on the mortgage. More information here.

    • Food – growing it.  This can be easier and more fun than you may know, with special techniques like those in “Secrets of the Soil”. More information here. The travesty of 35 million people in the USA going hungry is that many of these people have access to some very good land, and never think to grow food. I saw a TV documentary of a woman who was hungry. She had a very large lawn around her house, with no vegetables growing on it. She showed a bare cupboard as proof of her lack of food – but what she showed was little cardboard boxes of food. Where were the 50 lb bags of rice and bags of potatoes that poor people should be buying? This was evidence that some poverty is due to how a person thinks.
 

If you use Sonic Bloom, you can get 2-5 years growth per year for your fruit trees.  Fruit that ripens on the tree is many times healthier than the fruit you buy in supermarkets, plus it tastes incredibly delicious. There are certain substances which appear in the fruit only in the last few days of ripening. Supermarket fruit has been picked way before this.

Add up how much you spend on fruit and vegetables.  Think how much more healthy food you could eat if you didn’t have to worry about paying for it. It used to be that it wasn’t worth the trouble to grow your own food, but this is not the case any more.

For more information on survival see www.RainyDayFoods.com.

One source of wealth that few people consider until they lose it is their health. Making money requires energy. The more health you have, the more energy you have. In addition, spending time and money learning about and obtaining methods to improve your health can save you tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars later. 

According to www.cancertutor.org the average person who has cancer spends $375,000.  I had a client once whose husband who was in his 40s spent several hundred thousand dollars on a kidney transplant. Sure, insurance paid for that. But after the operation they had to spend around $2,000 a month on drugs to maintain the kidney, and 20% of that ($400/month) was not paid for by insurance. NOW the man is careful about what he eats and drinks.  There are inexpensive ways to improve your health. For example, you can remove chlorine, fluoride and lots of other toxins from your water with a reverse osmosis water filter. We got a good one from ebay for just $80.  Giving up toxic substances is free and can even save you money.

It’s crucial to do some thinking and research on these subjects. And to take action now, if you are to survive the very rough economic times that are probably not too far away.  Most of the people alive today have so far been blessed in that they did not have to face anything truly awful like our ancestors did, such as a World War or a Great Depression.  But there is evidence that this situation will not last for long.  Here’s one graph that strongly indicates that our generation will have to suffer a Great Depression:

graph second great depression

Graph Indicating that a Second Great Depression is not far away

 

During the last Great Depression, not only was there an unemployment rate of around 25% but those who DID have a job had their wages drop by 60%. That is, a person with a salary of $30,000 had their wage drop to $12,000!!!!  And the people in those days did not have to compete with the 2 billion people in India and China for their jobs.

If a Great Depression hits us, could you survive for – say – ten years?

If the answer is no, than I highly recommend that you prepare now and focus on buying and doing nothing that does not directly support survival.

Copyright ©:  Stephanie Relfe - 2006 - 3000

Permission is granted to reproduce this article and spreadsheet
as long as you acknowledge the author and quote and link to www.relfe.com

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