Importance for Personal Finance

Personal Finance — including saving, debt elimination, investing, insurance… All these topics have been reviewed and re-emphasized and drilled to death on PF blogsphere.

Now… why is it important?

Is it because it is good to have money? That we can afford luxury when we are rich? And that we are free to do as we want?

Well, it is good to have money. I cannot deny that. I can use more myself :) But, is money that important? That many people do just about anything they can to have more of it.

Most certainly, one cannot survive in today’s modern life without money, which was invented and evolved from thousands years ago to facilitate trading. Now, it is essential to our survival. So we have to be practical and take care of this aspect of our life. To say that we as a part of current system/society can do without money is simple arrogance.

On the other hand, as the so-self-claimed highest form of intelligence on earth, is money all we can ultimately think about? Is our life just about things that we can get with money, in order to be secure and to survive? So the smartest beings on earth is stuck worrying about survival like all the other organisms?

Setting aside all the details, that is exactly what we are doing. We fight and we quarrel with each other for money (power) to be able to obtain and impose in order to have resources to survive, hopefully in the company of family and a few friends. In between, we add luxury to make ourselves feel a little better. Even when we are talking about green and saving the planet now, we are merely striving for our own survival (The planet does not need us to save it).

That’s it to human life? Wow, mind blowing…

marlows_hierarchyBorrowing from Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (not that I totally agree with the way he arranged things), I suggest that we manage our money so we can move beyond it. By that, I mean, once our basic needs are secured and that we have obtained a certain level of comfort and security through accumulation of “enough” money, it is only suitable for us to explore further about life. It’s time to ask yourself some [tough] questions. And there is so much to learn about yourself, your mind, your body, the world, the universe!

Additionally, we cannot counteract the absurdity that springs from money by managing our money better because that will only generate more absurdity. To break the chain of absurdity that which is driven by money-greed, we must move beyond thinking at the money level — the level where everything is evaluated by money.

We cannot fix the chaos of the world by doing things that will generate more chaos (which is exactly what we are doing) — in reference to entropy, which is the 2nd law of thermodynamics, with my humbly minimal understanding — so either we find a way to calm down or we let chaos increase to its maximum level at which it will plateau, and somehow the system will correct and reset itself over time.

Think of it like a video game, you cannot move to the next stage until you beat the current stage. Nobody talks about this because this is a road that is far less travelled by humans. Everyone is busy being comfortable or trying to be comfortable. It is a road without a map. It is an exciting journey yet scary at times. You have nothing to rely on except yourself… by learning and unlearning about many things and discovering yourself, you find your next step.

So the true importance of personal finance is not about personal finance.

That is, the importance of personal finance is to allow you to move beyond what the system preaches. It preaches the idea that we are to think and identify for ourselves all the things it preaches, mostly just superficial and material things. When you start to think about the greater whole, with wider perspective, you become free from your previous perspective because there is so much more now. You don’t have to try to be free. You are free. You no longer have to “deal with” all the desires to control your spending.

Take good care of your personal finance and realize at certain point that you CAN start looking further. If you do not realize, well, personal finance is personal finance. You are stuck thinking personally, mostly about yourself.

Last thing, has it ever crossed your mind that without humans, money and all the “precious metals” would be worthless? They are just what they are, a part of nature, beautiful but not worth anything. Thought I’d throw this related question out too.

Originally posted 2009-05-07 00:01:07. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Happiness is Like Water

One of the most fundamental attitude toward life that we seem to agree on today is the pursuit of happiness. On this topic, I simply want to present an analogy here.

Happiness is like water to us.

Yes, we need water. However…

If we try to grab and hold on to water, it simply flow out of the hand.

If we try to preserve a batch of water in container forever, it will become stale water — dirty and stinky.

If we retain all the water we drink in our body and never let out, our bladders will get bloated and eventually we will get sick.

If we drink way too much water, we will also get sick and may even die.

If we hoard water, it does almost no good as we can only drink so much at once.

If we poke, kick, and strike water to try to figure out what it exactly is, it only gets murkier.

So is water. So is happiness.

Know that sensation when you find when you are most thirsty.

Know the taste of water across the tongue.

Know the moment when water flows into the mouth and down into stomach and your thirst is fulfilled.

Know the non-sensation of drinking more water once you are fulfilled.

Know the feeling when you drink too much and you are bloated.

Finally, we always perceive peace, beauty and vitality in water that flows free.

Now if we try to control how water would flow… Well, I will let you finish your own thought now.

Originally posted 2010-01-29 00:47:12. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

If You Don’t Use It, You Lose It

In the past two years as I learned fitness/exercise/gym as a habit, one thing that is very pertinent in life is that – If you don’t use it, you lose it.

One doesn’t have to be a kinesiology major to understand that. My experience has been that even if it has just been a week of inactivity, I notice a deline in my weight training (very obvious) or cardiovascular performance. How do I tell? The answer is the amount of soreness I can feel. Even more obvious is the immense soreness + pain whenever I start some new training. And hence, the need for us to emphasize on consistency of exercise. To avoid the benefits that we have worked so hard to archieve, it’s best to continue to do something at least, even just to maintain a moderate level of the benefits. In addition…

The idea of “If you don’t use it, you lose it” does not only apply to fitness and health. On my path of exploring and learning singing myself, I continuously discovered that many of the causes for my difficulty to produce more beautiful tone are muscular apathy of head/facial area muscles. It is over time when I consciously practice these muscles that I am able to improve.

Actually, not only is this the problem for people trying to learn how to sing, but this is the problem for people between ethnic group learning a foreign tongue. Certain languages only require us to use certain facial muscles. It is one of the many reasons that when we try to learn a new language that we have difficulty with announciation. What we need to do is to practice using all the muscles on our face :)

Well, another thing is that us humans have a tendency to be lazy and use less, or just enough, muscle to perform a certain task. That is exactly why we need to re-learn deep breathing for our health, and also exercise our mind to maintain our mental sharpness, and of course, exercise our body to make sure we don’t lose those muscle.

In fact, I would go as far to say that everything in our body is governed by this concept of “If you don’t use it, you lose it”. Therefore, everyday we need to consciously use every part of our body and push it to improve, expand, and realize our potentials!

Originally posted 2007-05-02 23:01:12. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Saving Interest Rate Is Not Low Enough

I’m sure that’s what all the banks think. “If only we can somehow make it 0% interest and still get people to deposite their money…”

This post is provoked as I am doing my monthly accounting and noticed this in my ING Direct Saving account.
ing_july_rate

So 1.5% is not low enough and they make it 1.4%, whaaaa….

They are really being unhelpful for those of us who are saving their money.

There are those people who think, “I will lose my money if I put them in stock market. I will not make any interest if I put them in saving. I will also lose money to inflation if I put them under my mattress. To hell with it, I’m going to spend it all.”

For sure that is not the right mentality to have, respective to saving and being frugal, but surely, we can all see why people feel that way, no?

PS. Hope everyone had a good July 4th weekend.

Originally posted 2009-07-05 16:01:24. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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