Money is the universal equivalent for effort. It is an indicator for our personal exertion that shows the extent to which we succeed by using the special talents we receive. For instance, money can somewhat measure whether one person is smarter, more successful, stronger or luckier than another person. It is essential to have a universal equivalent for such measurements.
Having such a universal equivalent is not evil. We cannot measure each and every person, yet we still need to be able to somewhat evaluate people and their efforts.
In Hebrew, the word for money is “Kesef,” which derives from the word for covering, “Kisuf.” It means that we cover our efforts correctly, with an intention to bestow goodness upon others, and the measure of covering our efforts is called “money” (“Kesef”). However, in its original Hebrew use, such a meaning of money/covering implies spiritual efforts and results.
Yet it also applies to our corporeal world. As mentioned, money is a certain universal equivalent we use to measure human efforts. It can, however, be replaced with another universal equivalent: relationships. That is, when we understand human relations and exercise positive connections among each other and with nature, when the laws of nature becomes our common universal equivalent, then the other dimensions will disappear, except for our inner attitudes to each other, our relationships. In the language of Kabbalah, such a measurement is called a “Masach” (“screen”) and “Ohr Hozer” (“reflected light”). The screen and reflected light become spiritual tools akin to the way in which we use coins and banknotes today. The strength of the screen and reflected light that we receive is equivalent to the strength we have to resist our own egoistic desires, which prioritize self-benefit over benefiting others, and raise the importance of benefiting others over benefiting each person’s own self. We can then measure the extent to which we positively connect in ties of bestowal above our egoistic resistance.
The more we can bestow above our egoistic resistance, the more we discover true spiritual wealth, which is eternal and completely fulfilling, unlike corporeal wealth that never truly satisfies. Wealth is about how much of ourselves we can give to others. That is the high spiritual root of money, and it has since descended to simple cash and coins that we relate to in our corporeal reality. However, we need to descend to the very bottom, and see the true egoistic extent of our relationships, in order to realize the lowliness of such relations and reach a critical juncture where we develop a genuine desire for change. At that point, nature’s positive forces will lift us. We just need to realize the lowliness of our current state and the desire to change, and accordingly ask for the kind of change that nature responds to: to improve our attitudes to each other and wish for nature’s quality of bestowal to enter into our connections.
Based on the video “Is Money Evil?” with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman and Semion Vinokur. Written/edited by students of Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman.
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