Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.
When one asks themselves or someone else of their opinion on “what wealth is” most people will immediately associate this concept with power and money. We immediately think of a luxurious lifestyle. We think of the power that we will receive and the ability to have control over others. Wealth can be a fundamental thing. Wealth is stuff we want: cars, electronics, houses, gadgets etc. You can have wealth without having money. Merriam Webster, an online dictionary, defines wealth as “abundance of valuable material possessions or resources.” Everyone has their own perspective on how they view wealth. Some believe wealth is knowledge whereas others will believe it is money and has tons of it. But is having loads of money the only goal in life? Is this the only way a person can be happy in this generation? Or could there be other factors contributing to life so you can be happy? “Wealth cannot define the purpose, but the purpose can define wealth.”
In today’s society, when someone talks about wealth, they are usually referring to having a huge amount of money. When you search online “who the richest/ wealthiest person in the world is”, people like Henry Ford and Bill Gates are at the top. But what about wealth being more than just money? A person’s wealth should not be defined by the amount of money they have sitting in their bank accounts or how “fat” their wallets are. Being wealthy can be when a person is blessed to have a loving family that supports them. Happiness and wealth somewhat go hand in hand. People think that if you have money, you are happy, which is true to an extent if your opinion of wealth is having a good family. If you sit down and really think about wealth, the majority of people’s main goal in life is to earn as much money as they can in their lifetime and try to be happy with that. At a young age, you are taught that money is everything that you cannot survive in the world without it. Money is their key to survival, their everything. That new phone that they “have to have” or the new car or the big house with all the extra amenities, it all costs money yet what personal value does it have. Why are we attached to such things? They are just objects that you waste your time on throughout the day. Some men see money as a way to attract women, which is true these days because women go around looking for rich men to marry that will provide them with everything they desire. People believe that the more money they have, the more fun they will have in life, and the better chance they will have of leaving behind a legacy that will be remembered in the future. In Albert Camus’s Banquet speech, he reads a line that says, “Every man, and for stronger reasons, every artist wants to be recognized.” This quote shows that no matter what money is a way to be recognized, to be remembered. Yet, when you die who has the power to pass down those memories of you? Would it be the money you have laying in the bank or the family you have left behind? Money cannot speak. So, what will be more useful to you when you are near the end of your life? When the big game of life final comes down to the final stages, aches and pains start to settle in making it harder to do everyday things in life, your memory begins to disappear, everything that went right for you starts to go wrong. At this point in your life, only the wealth of having your family by this point in life is what you need because money can’t cure old age or provide you the emotional support you need from family.
People with money are treated with a more respectful and gracious behavior public. People place the rich superior to the average normal person. The wealthy are given the best treatments. That is the power that wealthy people are handed, the ability to dominate others. Majority of the wealthy people use their wealth, their influence to become the head of a business or to gain success through politics. If you look at all the candidates that have run for president, they were all wealthy and with their wealth, they gained power and support of the people. Like Donald Trump, if he was just an ordinary guy running for the presidency he would have never had the chance to win, but because he was wealthy he had the power to influence voters to vote for him. The wealth brings them the power they need and crave. The wealthier a person becomes the greedier and power hungrier they get. But once the money gets to you it shapes you into a different person. You start to hate the little things you loved in life. Life starts to become a competition to see who can make the most money. In the past money used to make you happy, now it makes you despise the person you have become. Being wealthy has its disadvantages of being judged unfairly. People tend to have a set view on how wealthy people act.
Wealth is not the ability to take everything you have for granted. Wealth is not feeling malice towards others or feeling greedy. People put so much stress on becoming wealthy that they actually forget the true meaning of living their life to the fullest. They are so focused on obtaining more money that everything else disappears. If one spends their life gaining wealth than what was the true purpose of life. When one dies that wealth they gained does not go with them instead it stays back. There will always be emptiness inside you when you are struggling for material items such as money. That emptiness will never be filled no matter how much money they make. The need for money will destroy a person. It can corrupt an individual to do unexplainable things. Wealth is not and should not be about being famous and having everyone know who you are. Others might see you as a very rich person but if you cannot see yourself and see your worth then what is the point of all the wealth and power. Wealth should never be a way for you to gloat and boast about your riches. The more you “show off”, the more a person will become lonely in life. Having money, people tend to brag and make others jealous but if the person in front of you is indifferent and do not pay attention and really does not care then the person will never be complete. Because they believe that if they are wealthy they will be liked more and people would be jealous of them.
It is important to make money to an extent that you are content with how your life is and you do not have to struggle. Sharing your money can be looked as doing a good deed but what happens when sharing money becomes a job as well. People tend to judge when you have money. They try to take advantage that if you have money you will just loan it to them when they need. Wealth gives people a sense of security. We need the peace of mind. We need to provide for our families. We need to have enough money so we can share it with the people we want to. For us to give, we need more. The philosophy behind that is the more money you accumulate the safer and secure your future will be. That life will be “easier and stress-free” because you do not have to worry about money. For some people, wealth means that it is associated with something evil. Many people find power with wealth. There is a saying “that money is the root of evil.” Majority of the crimes committed are due to accumulating money or the need for money. In our world, money is a need for survival. So, what I am trying to say is wealth is not as bad. It is important. How we earn our wealth and what we do with it will speak about our personality our character, it will define who we really are.
In conclusion, money and wealth are amoral. It is neither right nor wrong. Power and wealth can positively or negatively have an impact on one’s ability to enjoy life. Wealth gives people a sense of financial security. Knowledge is wealth since any kind of need and comfort a person requires is given to them. It brings happiness and contentment which is far beyond materialistic things. The best form of wealth is when people have the money they want and have enough to spend and live comfortably. This is the lifestyle that can really give meaning to the wealth that people have. Being rich for the sake of being rich should not take away from living your full potential. Wealth can be viewed as a blessing and as a curse. Be wealthy, but for the right reasons. All we need is the right attitude, passion and time.