Spirituality and money - not really two words we think of saying in the same sentence.
There has always been this split between money and being spiritual, as if somehow the two should never meet.
But money creeps into every area of our life. In our current way of life, there is not much that money doesn't touch in one way or another.
So this idea that if you're spiritual you shouldn't have an interest in money means you're living in separation.
The truth is that most of us trade a large portion of our life's energy to get money, not to mention so much of our precious time.
Then we spend it on things that don't make us happy, or end up trapping us so we have to continue in the cycle so that our house of cards doesn't come crashing down.
If you're thinking - well that's not me - just look at your life and see how much time you spend devoted to it in some way or other - and what is that money being used for?
Whether you're working to earn it, worrying about it, wondering how to get more of it or spending it. It may surprise you how much of your life you've given over to this thing called money.
With the evolution in consciousness that is sweeping our planet right now this is coming into question more and more. As we begin to wake up, we are becoming aware that we're living lives that don't make us happy, many of us are realising, our fixation on money is stealing our freedom.
Being a free spirit seems to be at odds with the whole concept of money. But our very ability to do what we want to do seems to be based upon money.
Are you willing to let go of the supposed security of money, or willing to compromise your financial standing in order to be free from the daily drudgery of earning it?
“People were created to be loved, and things were created to be used. The reason why the world is in chaos is because things are being loved and people are being used.”
- The Dalai Lama -
I have lived this first hand and you may have too. I had the 'good' job and the nice clothes, big car. There were benefits - I didn't have to worry about paying my bills. But I was dead inside. I was trapped.
And then I tried what I thought was the opposite - I ran off on a seachange - vowing that I was done with this corporate slave thing and that there are more important things than money.
It was great for a while, but eventually I found myself working three part time jobs just to pay my rent and put food on the table. I was actually working harder, for less money - and I had even less spare time than I had in the big smoke in my fancy corporate job.
Nothing had changed at all really - my life was still consumed with earning money. Because I may have changed my geography, but I hadn't changed me.
One thing this made me realise is that we see money as being inextricably linked to our survival. We equate having no money with being in a struggle to actually stay alive. By the same token, we think of having money as having no problems.
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed.”
- Mahatma Gandhi -
And you can understand why, given how our economy has been hijacked by greed, and that just the simple act of living life can cost you a fortune.
Things that should be available to all - food, clean water and shelter, are commodities we have to pay for.
And so, we often stay in jobs we despise, in relationships that bring us down, and in lives that suck the energy out of us - because, as we see it, that is what we need to do to survive.
We've all heard the phrase - money is simply energy. But it's an energy that we've convinced ourselves, has a power all of its own.
We've also been taught 'time is money'. As though that's all the hours in our life are worth - some numbers in a bank's computer.
In fact - the truth is completely the opposite. Money is probably one of the best spiritual teachers you could ever have because it simply reflects your beliefs right back at you.
The power it appears to have, is only what you've given it.
I decided there had to be a different way to work with money in this new age of Aquarius. We are evolving, so surely all energy on the planet must be evolving, including money.
I intuitively knew that having a well-paid job I hated wasn't going to yield the results it used to - and I just didn't have the heart to live in that paradigm any more anyway.
Up until recently, in the age of Pisces, we've managed to get what we want by exerting a high level of masculine energy - forcing things to go our way, using willpower to make things happen and controlling our lives as far as possible - all things I was very good at by the way.
But not any longer.
That kind of energy will just deplete you and whilst you may get short term results, in the long term it will all just collapse again.
In fact, I found that I just lost interest in what I was fighting for, it started to feel futile and pointless.
So, I started reading and researching and also just listening within and trusting the ideas that came.
I knew that there had to be another way of understanding of exactly what this thing we call money is all about and how to work with it so I could actually enjoy my life and the time I have on this planet, without constantly trading it to get more money.
Most of us see money as something outside of us. As something we get by working hard, often doing things we don't want to do.
But if you contemplate the statements I made earlier, that money is simply an energy - and it mirrors ourselves back to us, it's obvious that it's more about what's going on inside us than what we're actually doing, that creates our money experience.
Of course, that's nothing new.
But I did realise that to have a different experience of money I needed to change how I acted around it, how I dealt with it on the inside, so I could understand how that translates to my actions in the world.
One should not be miserly. Money has to be created and money has to be used. Money is a beautiful invention, a great blessing, if rightly used. It makes many things possible. Money is a magical phenomenon.
- Osho -
Money, like energy, is something that should flow… in and out of your life. That's how energy behaves. It's always around, but you can't hold onto it. It appears when you need it. Try too hard to grasp it and it disappears into thin air.
You can't wait for the money to come before you do what you want to do. Otherwise you might spend your life waiting - you need to take the first step.
The need has to be there first, so that money can flow. You can't irrigate fields from a river, unless you first dig the ditches for it to flow along. You can't fill a pot with water before you have the pot.
So, with money you need to take the first step, create the vacuum of resources, and then the universe will conspire to bring you everything you need to do what you want to do, including money. In fact I wrote about how this happens before.
There are three areas of money that I feel need to be balanced to start living in the flow with money so it will always appear when you need it.
There's no getting away from it, we need money to survive nowadays. But money is simply an extension of our consciousness - as within, so without.
But it's time to stop looking 'out there' because that's not where the money is coming from.
It's coming from within you.
From your choices, and your actions and your expectations.
You need to explore your relationship with money, and what you've made money mean … and you need to unite your ideas of spirituality with money, no longer two separate parts of your life, but two parts of the whole.
Stop thinking about money as being bad somehow and that to be spiritual you shouldn't be thinking about it or desire more of it. Affirm that it's simply a tool you use in the world.
Osho, a controversial Indian Guru, had a vision of a New Man - one who lived in and was part of the world, dancing through it like Zorba the Greek, but at the same time being a Buddha, a meditator and spiritually connected.
He called the new man Zorba the Buddha
In other words - there is no choice needed between living in the world and enjoying material things that are on offer, and being spiritual… you can be both without conflict.
Zorba the Buddha:
"Zorba the Buddha is the answer. It is the synthesis of matter and soul. It is a declaration that there is no conflict between matter and consciousness, that we can be right on both sides. We can have everything that the world can provide, that science and technology can produce, and we can still have everything that a Buddha, a Kabir, a Nanak finds in his inner being - the flowers of ecstasy, the fragrance of godliness, the wings of ultimate freedom."
- Osho - The Rebel -
Pillar one - The Practical Pillar - really needs no introduction. It's all about how to work with money in the world, using our current economic laws and rules.
It's about making sure you know what you're doing with your money and where it's going. I have written lots of posts about this before.
I do believe in setting a budget - how else can you know what on earth is happening with your money? You may prefer to call it a spending plan, because in my world a budget is not something that curtails your spending - it's simply setting an intention.
What I mean by that is, once you set it up so you know you have the money to cover all your outgoings….
….you just let go. Knowing that now, it will all work out.
You've set an intention - This is where your connection to your guidance and Spirit comes in. Be aware of how much you can spend, but don't keep a tight rein on it… detach and let go and let spirit guide you.
I promise you what happens is that even if you buy something that is not in the budget - if you are connected to your intuition, you will be guided as to if you should or shouldn't.
And if you should, the money will always come… it always works without fail - allowing God or Spirit to work through you in using your money.
The second pillar is The inner Pillar - our beliefs and unconscious understandings about money
We give money power - we think it allows us to dress well or travel or eat food or buy a house. But it's not the money that gets us those things - it's our own manifesting power - money is simply the tool we use as exchange.
Money will mirror yourself back to you - magnified…
I've written all about how to understand your relationship with money before, and the meanings you've placed on money as well, so I won't go back into that here.
But in order to really understand why money appears in your life the way it does, you need to explore both those aspects.
And finally, the third pillar of money is The Spiritual Pillar
With this massive shift of consciousness that we are going through, it's our responsibility to direct the riches on this planet for good… for the good of all not just the few.
We will bring our own consciousness to the world through our money - as within, so without and as we do so, we begin to change the consciousness of money on the planet too.
The great sage Sri Aurobindo calls this mission restoring money to its divine power and Osho calls it the New Man - bringing our worldly life and money together with our spirituality and not keeping them separate.
It's important that money is in the right hands.
But while we don't pay any attention to it, or we see it as evil or distasteful, we're leaving the money to those who DO focus on it and manage it. And it's not always those who have our best interests or those of our beautiful planet, at heart.
So we need to incorporate money into our spiritual path - this is simply seeing there is no separation, it is energy and it's a method of expression in the world. In the right hands it spreads love, joy and abundance.
How we use money and the energy we give it is important.
When you spend money it's an expression of who we are in the world - how you spend it, what you spend it on, how you receive it and everything around that has an impact on you, on your consciousness and therefore on the world.
Rampant consumerism covers up the emptiness people feel because of their lack of spiritual connection.
Except it doesn't work. As Mayuri Onerheim says in her book Money - Spirituality - Consciousness -"planet earth is a school of consciousness, not a catalogue store'.
Buying everything you want won't bring you freedom. In fact, it will simply complicate things more and weigh you down.
It leads to the disease of never having enough. Living more simply with less is far more liberating, and it's better for our planet.
When you're connected to your true self, following your heart - when you honor yourself, your money will take on that energy. It's all connected.
But if you are living in scarcity and lack, you're stagnating your flow of money.
if you're doing things you dislike just get money, if you are scared of money running out or not having enough, then you imbue your money with that energy, the energy of stuckness, of scarcity, and it goes out into that world with that energy.
Not only does that spread a consciousness of lack, you find that money is not attracted back to you in the same way as it is for people who let it flow without worry.
So, if you want to be financially abundant, start by being comfortable with the flow you have now.
This means taking care of what you have now, understanding what energy you've placed on money, and realising your responsibility is to follow the impulses of your heart to use money for good - connecting money with your true essence.
Richard Rudd (The Gene Keys) says the question we should all ask ourselves is 'how can I be of greater service to the whole?' This shifts our focus from self to the whole. And as everything is connected at the quantum level, when you serve the whole, you're helping yourself too.
So the basis of peace around money is first to find your level of comfort around the flow of money, and to be generous by serving, not yourself, but others.
Following your heart and imbuing money with the spirit of love, then trusting that the Universe has your back, will completely change your personal money story and the future of our planet, in the most amazing ways.