Unmasking the Myth of Scarcity

By Stephanie Jackman for REAP Business Association

Money is a lot like water. For some folks it rushes through their life like a raging river. Money comes through my life like a little trickle. But I want to pass it on in a way that does the most good for the most folks. I see that as my right and my responsibility. It’s also my joy.

These words – spoken by Gertrude in a church basement in Harlem in 1978, recounted by Lynne Twist in her book The Soul of Money – summarize the book’s theme: Money transmits our intentions. We can use it to create the world of our dreams, or we can use it to perpetuate the status quo.

The status quo is based on a mindset of scarcity. A mindset that creates an underlying fear that we, and the people we care about, won’t have enough. The prevalent belief that there isn’t enough to go around, that someone will always be left out, drives a culture of accumulation. A belief that more is better creates a race with no end.

The infinite race for more continues because of a third belief: “That’s just the way it is.” We assume the world is hopelessly unfair. We resign ourselves to scarcity. We worry first about getting what is ours. More than ours, in fact, to avoid being left out.

There is something freeing about the way Twist identifies then debunks the myth of scarcity. She not only gives us a choice to accept or reject the status quo, she offers a new and surprisingly simple alternative: There are sufficient resources for everyone on the planet to lead a healthy, productive, meaningful life.

The challenge is not scarcity of resources, but allocation. Twist’s solution is for all of us in the Western money culture to let go of trying to get more of what we don’t need so that we can free up our energy to make a difference with what we have. When we make a difference with what we have, it expands.

The Soul of Money started a conversation in my life that has sharpened my purpose and fortified my resolve. It was the inspiration for REAP and this magazine. It’s moved me to create a legacy of sufficiency. It’s spurred me to dwell less on what’s wrong with the world and more on the power I have to make it better.

TAKE ACTION:

  1. Pick up a copy of The Soul of Money. Learn more about the myth of scarcity and the principle of sufficiency. Challenge yourself to think differently about your relationship with money. Only then can you change how money affects your life.
  2. Spread the word. Pass the book on to someone who you think will benefit from its message. Or share Lynne’s URL, soulofmoney.org, with others.
  3. Visit reapcalgary.com for similar articles. Or to tell us what you think about this article by posting comments on our blog.
,

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

*
*

I'd like to subscribe to your newsletter.
Neighbourhood Revitilization

RiverWalk in East Village

Calgary’s East Village is being transformed. What was once a neglected inner-city neighbourhood is becoming a hub for creativity, recreation and community. RiverWalk officially opened on the August long weekend, is central to the revitalized look of the East Village and means a better quality of life for all Calgarians.

 Learn More
Meaningful Employment

Green Collar Job Initiative

A meaningful job that pays a living wage, helps the environment and strengthens the economy? That’s a green collar job. Thrive and its partners launched the Green Collar Jobs initiative with the release of the report Green Collar Jobs: New Workforce Development Opportunities for Alberta. The report provides a strong foundation from which to stimulate a green economy in our city.

 Learn More
Innovative Social Finance

Community Capital Networks

Passionate about supporting a sustainable local economy, REAP and its partners host a monthly webinar series called Community Capital Networks. If you are interested in unleashing the flow of capital to support a greener local economy, join the conversation to learn about promising practices across North America and to discuss how to bring them to Calgary.

 Learn More
Local Business Development

Enterprising Non-Profits Alberta

With the launch of Enterprising Non-Profits Alberta, Calgarians can expect to shop from more and more socially conscious businesses. ENP-AB is providing grants and technical assistance to non-profit organizations engaged in social enterprise, the kind that brings both financial and social returns.

 Learn More