Living each day much muchier
The human race has had long experience and a fine tradition
in surviving adversity. But we now face a task for which
we have little experience: the task of surviving prosperity.
I don’t think of myself as prosperous. I have a modest bank account. I don’t own any fancy jewellery or want any. I live in a room I rent from a friend. Yet, wondering whether I can go another year without a big screen tv is not just preposterous, it’s wholly monstrous.
Like everyone these days, I’m time poor. ‘Time is money’ they say, but I wonder if money also equals time? Our grandparents fixed things. They saved for things. They hunted around for a bargain and they walked away from things. Yet, I’ll spend money at the drycleaner to sew a strap back on my dress because I’m time poor. I might even go and buy a new dress. I’ll waive the 70c change from the taxi driver because he’s taking too long hunting around the cabin. I’ll spend money at a cafe for lunch and Noodlebox for dinner because I haven’t had the time or the energy to cook. Time earns me money, but money buys me time.
Time to do what though? Chat online for hours? Watch a movie? Change my status on facebook? These distractions are mostly frippery. What kind of life is this? At the end of the day, I’ve spent my money on things that are empty of real meaning and then I have no money and still no time.
Such a dilemma must be unfathomable to the woman who works all day for a cup of rice to feed her children. Moreso to the man who returns wounded and empty handed because the warlord raided the Red Cross supply and he didn’t have enough to buy what was his in charity and compassion.
Yes, I am truly prosperous and monstrous at the same time.
How can we survive prosperity with integrity?