Money is the visible sign of a universal force, and this force in its manifestation on earth works on the vital and physical planes and is indispensable to the fullness of the outer life. In its origin and in its action, it belongs to the Divine.
— Sri Aurobindo
In talking about abundance, scarcity, and what harvest means to us, we need to address the “elephant in the room,” namely, money.
While I was somewhat repulsed by the emphasis in The Secret on acquiring lots of money and the pleasures that money buys, the truth is, money really does make our world go round. Yet, as I wrote yesterday, many who have studied current trends acknowledge that our current money system has, over time, been the leading contributor to the illusion of scarcity, and the very real basis of poverty.
We can probably thank good old Adam Smith, who has been called the Father of Economics. At some point, you probably had to read, or at least study his classic, The Wealth of Nations. His mechanistic paradigm of how money flows has been the basis for capitalist society since the 18th century.
But as Bernard Lietaer, former senior officer of the Belgian Central Bank and a chief architect behind the Euro currency, has written, “Adam Smith’s system of economics could more accurately be described ‘as the allocation of scarce resources through the process of individual greed.’ The whole process of Smith’s ‘modern’ economics actually has its roots in primitive fears of scarcity, greed; and the implementation tool, the process by which this became real, was money.”
Lynne Twist, a renowned global activist, philanthropic fund-raiser and author of The Soul of Money, also asserts that scarcity is a lie, a product of psychology in reaction to a particular system.
For example, “It would be logical,” she writes, “to assume that people with excess wealth do not live with the fear of scarcity at the center of their lives, but I have seen that scarcity is as oppressive in those lives as it is for people who are living at the margins and barely making ends meet.
“It is so illogical that people who have tremendous excess would be thinking they don’t have enough, that as I encountered this time and again, I began to question the source of their concerns. Nothing in their actual circumstances justified it. I began to wonder if this anxiety over having enough was based on a set of assumptions, rather than circumstances. The more I examined these ideas and the more I interacted with individuals in a broad range of circumstances and a broad range of cultures and ethics, the more I saw that the fundamental assumption of scarcity was all-pervasive.”
She continues, “The myths and the language of scarcity were the dominant voice in nearly every culture, often overriding logic and evidence, and the mind-set of scarcity created distorted, even irrational, attitudes and behaviors, especially around money.”
On Tuesday, after tomorrow’s Tarot Card of the Week, we’ll explore this shadow in a little more detail.
Do you believe that scarcity is a myth? I welcome your comments.