What's Money Good For Anyway?

I guess we have all been taught in school about how commerce really began…when Cro-Magnon
man A wanted something Cro-Magnon man B had and vice-versa. And (importantly here), both gentlemen (possibly gentlewomen, most likely gentlewomen) decided not to kill each other and make a trade. Voilá the birth of commerce.

Yet money was not around, it was really bartering that took place. If I had excess Y and you had excess X, we could trade, and maybe think we traded fairly. Then, around 5000 B.C. the Lydians decide that bartering was inconvenient because the transport of goods to be bartered was excessive… so as always necessity is the mother of invention and the first currency was invented.

Nothing much has changed in 7000 years with the transactional aspect of money. However how we think of money, how we use it, and how we carry it is a whole other question. Money is necessary for survival in the world we have created. So having money to feed ourselves, shelter ourselves, educate ourselves, and care for ourselves when we are sick is not a luxury, it is a necessity. Money can buy comforts and can definitely help in the ease of living, the one thing money cannot buy is happiness.

As a parent I tell my children to have respect for money. Like many things in life just the right amount is great, but too much leads to excess, and to little leads to suffering.

“Money won't create success, the freedom to make it will.” Nelson Mandela