Friday, May 19, 2006

One way in which a life can be wasted

"Money is the representative of a certain quantity of corn or other commodity. It is so much warmth, so much bread."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Warmth" in this case means value for fuel which would generate heat.

The key word in this quote is "representative." Too many people treat money as the objective itself. They become obsessive, even addictive, about acquiring money. It becomes the main quest for their lives, their raison d'etre.

But why? Money and the quest for it is more within their control than many other things about theri lives. The way to get money is clearer than how to have a successful relationship with a spouse, how to raise children properly or how to form a bond with God.

They disclaim the importance of anything else--even to the point of saying that their failed marriage was not significant or that the problems their children have were the fault of their spouse--in order to make their focus on the acquisition of money clearer. To them, it's not that God doesn't matter (or doesn't exist, though some claim this), but that God is no more important to them than their work.

These people are dissociated not just from the mainstream of life around them, but also from the direction that humankind has moved over the past millennia.

As financially successful and secure as they may be, they are throw-aways when it comes to their significance as contributors to the advancement of humanity.

How sad. They cannot be retrieved. They are lost, just as much as those who have made up their minds to blow themselves up and take as many others as possible with them in the belief that God wants them to do it. They have deceived themselves and they want to take others with them.

What' s important is that the rest of us don't follow their examples and don't listen to their entreaties to join them in their lost-cause quest. We live among this human detritus. They present a foil against which we can measure the quality of our own lives.

We can sense our own value by comparing what we have done with our lives against what they have wasted of theirs.

Bill Allin
'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' striving to show the distinction between the black hats and the white hats.
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