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Money or Love? || Acharya Prashant, with youth (2014)
Author Acharya Prashant
Acharya Prashant
5 min
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Questioner (Q): What is the basic need of anyone? Money or Love?

Acharya Prashant (AP): What’s your name?

Q: Vaibhav

AP: Sit Vaibhav. Vaibhav do you know the meaning of your name ‘Vaibhav’? Do you know what Vibhu means? Do you know what Vibhuta means? Vaibhav is very closely related to Vibhu, Vibhuta. Vaibhav means, ‘I have it and I need no more'. Know the meaning of your name. 'I have it and I need no more'. And you are asking what is the most basic need of anyone – Money or love?

Love is not a need. In fact, the one who is still needy cannot love. Love is not about needing, love is about having so much that you give it. Love is real Vibhuta, Vaibhav. “I feel contented within and that contentment shows up in all my relationships. This is love. All my relationship, my relationship with my friends, family, trees, animals, the entire existence. My mind is healthy and that health is present in all my relationships.” – this is love.

The expression of your inner health is love.

Love is not a need. It is an expression. It’s giving.

Love does not ask, it only gives, “I am contented. I am settled. I am secure. I am not a beggar, beggars cannot love.” Love is not a need. Whosoever told you love is a need does not know love. Love is your nature, not your need. You live in your nature. You do not ask for your nature from outside that I need my nature, kindly give it to me. Are you getting it?

Now you come at money.

Money is about goods and services. You can give money and some goods, get some services. Yes, that is a need. But how much money do you really need? Now you have to ask, "till what extent it is a real need and beyond which point does it start becoming ‘greed’?" That you have to ask.

I often ask this question to my audience and I am asking you as well. Till the time you are a student, you easily make do in Rs. 4000 a month- Rs. 5000 a month. Some even less than that, some even more. Right? That much you find sufficient. That suffices for all your needs. Right?

Now you pass out and within three months of passing out you say, “No, no even twenty-five thousand are not meeting my needs.” Have your needs exploded? Are they like a balloon, they can get inflated at any time? A need is a need, basic need. Like a plant needs water. Like you need air. Your requirement for air cannot increase twenty times in three months. Can it increase? So surely what we usually call as a need for money is not at all a need for money, it is just ‘greed for money’.

What you need is very little and you will easily get it. Today all of you are so tensed. You feel unemployment is such a big threat, "I must earn so much of money!" You don’t want to earn that money because you really need that money.

Let’s be very clear about it.

You don’t want to earn that money because you really need that money, you want to earn that money because you have a psychological artificial dependency. It’s because of the society you want to earn. You want to display it to others. You want to tell your parents. You want to get respect from others. Your very sense of self-worth depends on how much are you earning.

It is not a need. Don’t call it a need. Your needs are very very small, I am repeating. Your needs are very little. And that much you will get. Easily get. You need not to be tensed. First of all, love is not a need. You said which of these two is the bigger need- love or money? First of all, love is not a need. Secondly yes, money is a need. But you don’t need too much of it.

The day you require a lot of money, is the day of your slavery. You think money will give you freedom. You are wrong, mistaken. Money comes at a cost of freedom. There are no free lunches. Anybody who is giving you money will expect something in return. You will not get one rupee from anybody for free. Anybody who is paying your bills is noting down how much he is paying. And even extract it from you with interest. Not even one rupee can be taken for free. You are selling away your freedom for the money you are taking from anybody.

So, don’t make your requirement of money too large. Money is a small need, let it remain a ‘small’ need. The more money you need, the more you will become dependent, the more you need to sell away your freedom. Is that clear?

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