” He is not a Spiritual person. He is a businessman. He is money minded.” These are the kind of statement i hear people saying whenever they see a Swami, a Spiritual master who lives in luxury, who uses best of clothes, cars, travel in Helicopter, etc.
As i was doing my research on How a person can live a totally fulfilling life. I realised that a person needs to enjoy Spiritual Bliss with Material abundance while serving society to live a totally fulfilling life. But the question that intrigued me was ‘Is is desirable that money & Spirituality go together?’
so i started doing the research on why there is a belief that Money & Spirituality can’t go together?
In my research i found that there are different reasons why people believe that Money and Spirituality cant go together viz;
1. Religious Cause
2. Lives of Great Spiritual Masters.
4. Fake Baba’s & Swamiji’s.
Lets go through them one by one.
1. Religions cause:
In Bible during Sermon of mount Lord Jesus Christ says ” No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon(Money)
( Matthew 6:24).
The apostle Saint Paul, in his first letter to his young disciple, Timothy, had this to say: For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil( 1 Timothy 6:10)
There is a belief that when one surrenders completely to God, He will take care of all our needs.
2. Lives of Great Spiritual Masters:
Lord Buddha and Lord Mahavira, both great Spiritual Masters, left their palace and all their material pleasures. Apart from them Lord Jesus Christ & Saints like Sai Baba, Ramkrishna Paramhansa, Raman Maharshi, etc. never lived in luxury. They always lived in Poverty and never aspired for Luxury or money.
People take their example and believe that a Spiritual person does not live in luxury and dont bother about money so they think that money and spirituality dont go together or one has to leave material world or money & luxury for their spiritual growth.
In almost all the movies, we normally see that villians are very rich and they exploit or committ crimes like corruption, bribing, murder, extortion, stealing, etc. to acquire money which gives an impression that those who run after money become evil.
4. Fake Baba’s or Swamiji’s: Innocent people are looted by greedy people and cheaters who in the garb of swamiji’s or Baba show some magical tricks or give some religions discourses and ask people to offer all their wealth & belongings. this also makes people feel that Money & Spirituality dont go together.
So due to above reasons it is believed that Money and Spirituality cant go together.
But now let us take a look at below mentioned points to understand that none of the above causes must make us believe that Money & Spirituality cant go together.
1. In Bible Lord Jesus also says that ” First seek ye the kingdom of God and everything else( inclucing Money) will be added unto you.”
2. When Buddha came back after his enlightenment to his wife Yashodhara, she asked him the question ” Couldnt you have achived the enlightenment staying in palace?” and Buddha said ” Yes, but i was not aware then.”
3. Lord Rama & Lord Krishna were Kings and lived in all the luxuries of life and did not renounce the luxuries and material pleasures of the world.
4. When Sudama was in difficulty, lord krishna made him rich.
5. Saints like Sai Baba did not lived in luxury but if he really wanted, he could have easily manifested the money or luxury because if he could convert water into oil to lit earthen lamp for diwali, he could manifest anything.
6. Lord Krishna says in Bhagvad Geeta to Arjuna that you dont have to renounce the world for reach god or to achive Joy or Freedom, but what is to be renunciated is the attachment to World & its pleasures.
So if we see things in overall view, it will be clear that its not that money & God or Spiritality cant go together. Only thing is we need to Give PRIORITY TO God/ Spirituality and everything else can be added in life including Money.
To Summnarize, Money & Spirituality can definately go together provided we put Spirituality as the Foundation on which material prosperity or worldly life is based.
Excerpts taken from Spiritual Billionaire Programme by Jitendra Gupta