Thoughts about Money

Much like many of you, I suppose, you have grown up hearing at one time or another, “do the work you love and the money will come.”  Or “create it by thinking it.”  That kind of stuff.  You know what I mean.  The mind over matter things that we need to focus on to create in our lives.

I do believe that thought is creative.  I do believe that we create what we think but by sitting around thinking about it doesn’t necessarily cause it to poof into our homes.  Not thinking about it doesn’t help either, thinking vs. non-thinking is much more beneficial.  But actions …. ahhh, there is a word – actions.

For example, if I at the very least write down my daily goals/plans (which I manage to do about once a month) I find it almost magical how those things get done.  I don’t know if they end up being the proverbial seeds that get planted and my subconscious is the sun that shines on them.  All I know is that it works incredibly well.  I fight the process of writing them down, and then when I do – voila, or some such alchemy boils around my outer energy levels and things get done.

I also find that pushing that first domino can have a tremendous amount of impact on what happens in the next few weeks.  I pushed the domino to get the job I have teaching as an adjunct professor, and even without the completely completed thesis (soon though), I’m teaching two classes at the local tech college.  I pushed a domino this week, and I am meeting with the head of the honors program to create an honors history class on the Holocaust, my passionate subject.

I have also been pushing the domino – gently – when it comes to my money.  I know that I have enough to do what I need.  I just don’t like to know how much I have.  So what I have been doing is giving a little each week to the Harvest Hope Food Bank.  I truly can’t imagine having hungry children at night.  I remember some rather rough times in my life, but real hunger has never been one of them.  There was always some food to satisfy the cravings.  At Harvest Hope, $15.00 feeds a family for one week, $30.00 feeds two.  How can they possibly do that?  But that isn’t my dilemma, that is theirs.  And the marketing states that .98 of every dollar goes to the hungry.  That’s important to me.  I like helping people have jobs, but I want stomachs fed first.

Yesterday as I was standing in line at the pharmacy, it occurred to me that is where the next revolution will break out.  Choice between drugs and food should be no choice at all.  I digress.

I think I have more money when I give some away.  I’m going to keep doing that.  I hope some of you will join me.  $15.00 for one week.  That’s lunch for me some days.

http://www.harvesthope.org/donatenow.aspx

Discipline???

Here’s the problem with me.  My last post was about discipline (concerning writing this time) and here it is Feb 1 (that was Jan 22) and I have not written since.  I do find that if I don’t write about my mindfulness and spiritual thoughtfulness, I forget all about it.  That said, the usual has interrupted – life, kids, work, reading, writing, grading.  I don’t think that’s justification, but it is reasonable.

Last night as I was driving home 3 hours from returning my grandson to his mother, I listened to several CD’s of “The Great Courses – The Passions: Philosophy of Intelligence of Emotions.”  Heavy duty stuff, but the kind of stuff I love to hear in limited amounts.  I heard 5 lectures (its a long drive) of fascinating findings about emotions.  All taught by prof Robert C. Solomon at the Univ of Texas at Austin.

Some fascinating things I learned:

1) Beethoven suffered from lead poisoning most of his adult life.  He lived with constant pain from his late 20’s onward, and still managed to get up and write exquisite music.  Who am I to complain about a little foot pain?

2) There is an Innuit tribe in Alaska who don’t feel anger.  In the midst of the most primitive of lives and the harshest conditions, they have chosen resignation over anger.  No need to get angry at a huge snow storm – just sit down and wait it out.  Those who plow through generally die.  Their word for “anger” loosely translates as “childishness”.  Hmmmm.

3)  The Japanese have an emotion named “amae”.  It is a type of indulgent interdependence.  They don’t understand the foreign American need for independence and the can-do-alone attitude.  I should be more Japanese.

4)  There is another tribe in Tahiti where anger is demonized.  People who “run amok” with anger appear to have gone insane.  Anger is spoken of as a poor behavior and emotional choice.

How does this connect with my (lack of) 40 days of written spirituality?  It makes me think about my own choices, and my own behavior.  And that some of the things I experience are cultural and not biological, and I can learn to make the choice to “wait it out” and not “run amok”.