1i) Wealth is not the only way to judge how successful a person is.
Do you agree? In our materialistic society of today, one’s success is often measured by the big bungalow you live in, the flashy car parked just outside, the clothes you are dressed in and even the breed of dog you own. The world is competing with each other in a show of wealth, typified by the show “Keeping up with the Joneses”. Wealth has become a yardstick of success and those who attain great wealth are deemed as having succeeded in life.Singapore has taken it to a new level with the 5Cs – Condo, Cash Card, Country Club, Car and the all-important Cash. In bookstores, we can see a whole section of self-help books dedicated for those who want advice on how to get rich. However, to simply use wealth as a yardstick to measure success is to take a narrow view of our purpose as human beings. Wealth is transient and fleeting, useless in teaching us to appreciate the finer points of life.
Sayings like “Money cannot buy happiness” capture the message entirely. Love, friends, family and happiness are intangible that cannot be exchanged for mere scraps of paper. Cynics might point out that they can buy massages, gifts, cars even foreign wives! However, how can all that compare to real love, the knowledge that your family loves you, the camaraderie amongst friends and other heart-warming moments of life? Wealth pales in comparison to other yardsticks in life such as happiness.A wealthy man can have all the money in the world, but if his life is devoid of love and friendship, he can buy all the material goods in the world to no purpose, for his unhappiness cannot be soothed by a new car. In comparison, a poor man who can just earn enough to fill the hungry bellies of himself and his family, but with true friends and children whose laughter warms the house, can find true happiness. In such a scenario, who do we say has succeeded in life? Here, we can see that even though one might have accumulated great wealth, he might not have reached his goals in life.In the pursuit of wealth, the beauty of life is muted even silenced. In their single-mindedness chase for personal wealth, one often becomes numb and indifferent to what life throws at us, working like passionless robots, doggedly chasing the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, often thinking all the hard will pay off once wealth is attained.
However, they realised all too late that success or happiness is measure by the number of digits in their bank book, filling them with an empty feeling.Family commitments are put on hold as young men and women place the career as their priorities. The pursuit of wealth is not necessarily a negative thing, as it is still necessary to have some sort of wealth so as to live a comfortable life. However, one should not embark on a blind journey to amass great sums of wealth, and in doing so, pay no heed to the more important things in life. Instead, one should work towards his aims and realize his dreams.
Only through self-fulfilment can he feel joy and he can judge himself as having succeeded.