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Riches & Charity

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By RAVI MATAH

In this highly competitive world, every person is in need of money to uplift him or herself and sometimes try to degrade others. Each person is thinking about how to make money. But they still are not sure, how to make it and also how much is enough? Everyone wants to be rich. But are riches sufficient enough to make a person enjoy life? Beyond a certain point, wealth becomes superfluous and a person does not derive any pleasure out of it. Riches don’t necessarily equip a person to lead a virtuous life. It is thought that wealth will help a person in bad times but that is just imaginary satisfaction. Great wealth has often landed people in danger rather than help them out of difficulty. Excessive wealth is of no use. Nor should money be sought for ostentation and show. One must also distinguish between honest and dishonest means of seeking money. Honest methods, though they show results slowly, should be followed in getting rich. Fraudulent methods are the Devil’s ways and should not be followed, though they may make a person rich quickly. Wealth should be acquired honestly, spent soberly, distributed cheerfully and given up without regret. Most of the methods of becoming rich are dishonest. Economy is one of the ways, but it prevents a person from being generous and charitable. The natural way of increasing one’s wealth is by cultivating the soil so that it becomes rich in produce. One English nobleman made a great deal of money in husbandry, by becoming a grazier, a mine owner, timber merchant and other similar avenues. Usury is a method of getting rich quickly, but it is a mean method. If a man takes great risks, he may lose all his money, but if he does not take any risk he will not increase his wealth. The best course is to temper adventurous investments with some safe ones. Monopolies are gainful to the trader or dealer. Riches acquired through service are honest, but they are foul if this service involves flattery and cringing before others. It is worse to seek wealth through legacies and testaments. Do not believe those who seem to despise riches; their contempt proceeds from failure to acquire these. Also, one should not be too cautious about spending money. Sometimes spending money results in more wealth to the spender. Whether one leaves one’s wealth to individuals or to the public, one should leave moderate proportions. That would achieve good results. A large estate left to heirs is sure to attract unscrupulous people who may try to rob them of their wealth. Large endowments to the public lack true spirit and will soon become corrupted. Gifts should therefore be proportionate to the needs of the recipients. The distribution should be done in such a way that the recipients are worthy of that gift and also that they should not feel hurt or neglected in any way. People should not postpone charity till death. They should be charitable throughout life; then the bequest will also be moderate.

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