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The Color of Money!

April 20, 2008

For a long time, it was the biggest mystery of my life. A mistake it seemed. My question was simple.
Simple to the point, that it seemed foolish.
My question was,

Why money?

No, I am not taking a philosophical stand. I do not expect an answer like, “money-can’t buy happiness-but-surely-it does-help” type of answers. My premise here is simple.

Why did the first man, think of having a currency to his otherwise sinless life?
Think of it, like this. If an alien from space were to observe the earthlings from up above, what would they have seen?
Paper being printed and coin being melted in a particular way, which gives it a value. And we are fighting over that, making it sure, some people get it and some people don’t. Those who do get it, everybody respects him, he is endowed and who do not, suffer without homes, food and basic amenities.

I can assure you my friend, the aliens up there will be left scratching their heads. Think of Don Trump at one side, he has lots of that paper, and think of the bum on the street or the beggar with his bowl. He has none.

I thought a lot about this asymmetry. It seemed nonsensical to me. Man in olden days, was an agrarian animal. He had all his basic amenities met just by the soil of the land and toil of his body.
I am of belief that, man when moved and settled down as a group, the harvest sharing would also be mutual.
Then enter, Uncle Scrooge!
Somebody thought, why should I share? And then came the individualistic mindset of man. [Note to readers: I am not making judgments! It is just my take on the societal structure to have evolved like this. In fact I pat him, for making that mental leap from a group to individual thinking, but still I cringe]
And bam! He said, why don’t we exchange? You give me millet, I give you rice.

Well and good…
And then life went on, and mind you, the average guy out there still went with a square meal. And given the belief that, the ketchups and pickles were not there to buy those days, I am pretty much inclined to think that food eaten by Mr. Individual will be just as tasty as the food eaten by Mr. Nobody.

So why did a seemingly unnecessary worthless piece of thing, end up controlling the destiny of a planet?
Chavez once said,

We give them oil, and what do they[US] give us in return? Worthless papers!

It is true, but not just about USD. INR, EURO, Yen, Yuan all are worthless papers. And the best thing is we have given different names to those, thinking that, names can somehow ascertain some value to it.

And when that alien up there will be seeing forex traders trade away, will think?

Papers all the same,
given a name,
they speculate in vain,
if lucky, may make some gain;
Again papers all the same

I can assure you he will be a confused alien.

Strange isn’t it! And imagine if he gets to understand all this thing, how will he be going back home and explaining to his fellas about what he saw in earth?

I was thinking. Really I thought a lot about it. What does money as such signify? The presence of which, what does it say about one?

And just two months back I got the answer, finally. Whenever, I saw beggars, destitute and hungry, poor and lifeless, groaning with hunger, I didn’t understand why do we need to have something which will make humans a sad species.

But then I got the answer.Trust me, it was satisfying.

Money as such is not an enabler or a disabler of the faucet called life and happiness. It is in its truest sense an upholder of the very law of nature. That of productivity. In hinduism there is a way of life, which is called, karmayog. It means a way of life, where the ultimate happiness is achieved by action, unrestrained and unabated. Its the philosophy of doing one’s work with the utmost positivity. A karmayogi is associated with warrior like qualities in this karambhumi[world] . [And I am a great digger of this way of life]

In nature, in the battle between the strongest and the swiftest of predators and the most agile and clever prey, only one of them will win.

The most productive one!

Nature is selecting only the best people to reward with life. If the predator is not the best, then he will wither away. If the prey is not the superlative in its way, it will be killed. Its work, productivity and efficiency in the most raw form!

So what has that to do with money?

Money is just a measure of the inherent productivity of an individual. Or how much do you leverage to contribute to the society. Not the NGO-style-contribution, but raising the value. When money changes hands, it is but reflection of that way of nature. That of reward for being the most productive.

If Ambani clan and the Tatas are the richest of all rich people in this small world, then it is because they have increased the final value of the society. It is not to say that NGOs are the black sheep, no! They are necessary and I absolutely subscribe to their actions.

But capitalism, as such rewards people on the basis of their productivity. And thats why I guess, socialism didn’t survive. It didn’t value and respect nature’s primitive law. That of positive action. License Raj is not a great policy, because it doesn’t respect man’s inherent instinct to create, to be productive, to increase the value.

And thats why I guess, the very nature of sustainable businesses come into play. Create value, solve problems and raise the overall standard of the society. Thats why I guess, entrepreneurs come in. I am an active trader and trade in almost all instruments listed in BSE/NSE. But I don’t think I am creating value for the society. But had I been, an investor(yes, I am for certain stocks) I would have done a bit more.

But entrepreneurs are a different breed all together. They are driven by their inherent desire to create value for those who come in touch with them. Value for the society in which they live and value for the race as such.

Entrepreneurs solve problems and they must solve them. For when they solve, they take a bit of the burden from Apollo himself and raise themselves to the very pedestals of God! It is them who can solve problems of this world and this doesn’t come easy.

So my friend, the color of money is not green, nor pink but its the color of raw brawn. That which comes when you take a bit of Apollo’s burden.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 20, 2008 12:49 pm

    I finally decided to write a comment on your blog. I just wanted to say good job. I really enjoy reading your posts.

    Tina Russell

  2. April 21, 2008 12:29 pm

    dude…read your articles on in Seeking Alpha..great work…congrats…

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