Author Topic: "Success"  (Read 1939 times)

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October 09, 2004, 07:37:43 PM
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Nereus

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I'm prompted to post this for a number of reasons, namely recent discussions/arguments with my father concerning my own future and the nature of being successful.
The topic?
"What is Success? Material VS Spiritual"

 While success can be measured in many more facets than the two mentioned above, I would like to focus on them.
 
 My father has been fairly zealous in constantly  lashing me every time I make a mistake concerning school with "You're going to fuck up your future!"
... Yeah, Dad. Missing the sign-ups for the PSAT I not only took last year, but just took the Princeton Review Board's version of a week earlier is definitely going to assure my utter failure in life.

 I agree that proper education and making it through High School (and preferebly onward to College) are important in modern scoiety, but the direness of the situation constantly stuffed down my throat slowly seems to have a backwards effect.
 No, don't worry, this isn't a rant about overbearing parents--because that's not why there are adverse effects.
My father and I simply measure success by different scales.

 His idea of success is a yacht, six-digit yearly in-pocket profits, and being CEO of XYZ Corporation. Mine is slightly less monetarily based. I would be far happier with a small house out in the wilderness, or perhaps the mountains, living off the land for the most part.  Would it be hard? Yes, probably. But my alternative is to push towards fame and fortune--both things I do not particularly want. I'd rather be "famous" for who I am than how much money I make.

 So, lets present a few arguments, shall we?

On the side of material success...
-"You won't get far in this world without money!"
-"Everyone's gotta eat. All the faith in the world isn't going to get you a cup of coffee."
-"What you're after won't mean shit trying to support your wife and kids later in life."

On the side of spiritual success...
-"I'd rather a happy, short life than a wealthy, drawn-out, rich life. You can't take money with you in the end."
-"Humans are incredibly resourceful. If I can't buy food, I'll still find a way to feed myself. Believe it or not, people still managed to eat before there were supermarkets. You don't see priests going hungry, do you?"
-"I suppose they'll have to live without a half-million dollar home, new car every six months, and private schooling."

 My, this entire post sounds so angsty... Ah well.
   My point being...
 How can one be "successful" by the standards of society, yet still take up spiritual pursuits in adult life? The logical answer would be to find a sort of balance between the two, I suppose... Or find a way to weave both together (as Prophecy has done, I believe? Does he not teach Martial Arts or the likes?).
 
 What would you choose, and why? How would you make it work?

(/end late-night ramblings)
Sometimes my shadow leads, or it follows me, but we never seem to become one and the same.

October 09, 2004, 08:38:26 PM
Reply #1

Unforgiven

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Excellent post. It reminds me of my Youth Group teacher. He was originally going to go to college to be schooled in the medical field where he would eventually would have become a doctor. But instead he choose to work for the church. Some might disagree of his actions because obvious he would be alot more wealthy if he had become a doctor. But I believe his choice was in his best intrest because he seems very happy with it. Just a story he told me, I thought I would share. But as for me I would choose spirital happiness rather than material happiness.

October 09, 2004, 11:30:02 PM
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SeventhwinD

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I do have to agree strongly with you, success isn't measured in wealth, but rather measured in accomplishments.

October 10, 2004, 02:04:10 AM
Reply #3

kobok

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First, from a strictly monetary sense, you have to balance the time you spend making money with the time you spend spending it (and enjoying it).  Otherwise your money isn't doing you a whole lot of good.

Second, success in life can be better measured by considering how you have worked to improve yourself.  This applies fluidly to all areas.  If you improve yourself spiritually, you become a better person.  If you improve yourself intellectually, you gain higher academic status.  If you improve yourself physically, you can greater physical attributes and health.  If you improve yourself financially, you gain greater financial status.  These things all have some value in this world, and in different degrees to different people.  You should never focus on one to the complete detriment of another, but should instead try to achieve balanced improvement or at least reasonable levels in each of these areas.  This will lead to a stable and prosperous life both physically, intellectually, and spiritually.
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October 10, 2004, 08:11:46 AM
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Nereus

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Quote from: Unforgiven
It reminds me of my Youth Group teacher. He was originally going to go to college to be schooled in the medical field where he would eventually would have become a doctor. But instead he choose to work for the church. Some might disagree of his actions because obvious he would be alot more wealthy if he had become a doctor. But I believe his choice was in his best intrest because he seems very happy with it. Just a story he told me, I thought I would share. But as for me I would choose spirital happiness rather than material happiness.


Interesting story. I've heard similar, and am glad to hear he's happy with his choice. :)
Though, I have also heard of--using your example of a doctor--some people finding spirituality in their work in the medical field. Hey, to each his own!

Quote from: Kobok
Second, success in life can be better measured by considering how you have worked to improve yourself. This applies fluidly to all areas. If you improve yourself spiritually, you become a better person. If you improve yourself intellectually, you gain higher academic status. If you improve yourself physically, you can greater physical attributes and health. If you improve yourself financially, you gain greater financial status. These things all have some value in this world, and in different degrees to different people. You should never focus on one to the complete detriment of another, but should instead try to achieve balanced improvement or at least reasonable levels in each of these areas. This will lead to a stable and prosperous life both physically, intellectually, and spiritually.

  You're right, Kobok. Physical health, spiritual health, and being able to buy your cup of coffee in the morning are all rather important--too varying degrees depending on perception. I believe I personallyl need to stop with the "money is so frigging evil *sigh*" and just live with it.
Hell, I'm only 17. I have some time left to figure this all out. :)

Keep the replies comin' friends!
Sometimes my shadow leads, or it follows me, but we never seem to become one and the same.

October 18, 2004, 10:13:18 PM
Reply #5

GhostWolf

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now since im one of the elder folks around here...and likely one of the few with wife and kids, i'll give you my ideas...hoepfully no tto depressing

my folks and family had way different ideas to myself
my fathers side was all about financial success and security
my mothers side was all botu family...
me im cuaght up as an individual who wants to experience the more spiritual side of life but cuaght up in the overiding controlling urge to be financially success and support / be responsible for my family and provide for my kids...personal success doesnt tend to come into it

i want to measure success in personal improvement...heck i have 2 great kids and an awesome wife who continues to surprise me in all manner of ways...so i am blessed...or successful

i have a reasonable paying job...though it keeps me busy and i hate it and it stops me being a calm unstressed individual...it allows me to send kids to a good school eat well and have a nice overall life

if yo ulook to Maslow his heirarchy indicated that without certain things such as security and a sense of belonging (meaning being an accepted part of society and having a roof over your head and food in your beely), that without these things one cannot realistically consider or attain spirituality/enlightenment etc

the problem is that in this world the idea of being happy and successful seem to be indeterminedly entwined...eg id rather be happy than successful....crazy since many people can only be happy when successful

like kobok said you need to find the balance...its not easy...and to be honest...if your a regular joe (ie not born with a silver spoon up your butt) then youve got your work cut out for you...its a doable thing but unfortunately capatlism isnt baout being happy...its about being wealthy...
GhostWolf

"Where Angels and Dragons fear to tread"
Warriors choose peace, others are condemned to it...

October 19, 2004, 06:00:07 AM
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kobok

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Quote from: GhostWolf
if yo ulook to Maslow his heirarchy indicated that without certain things such as security and a sense of belonging (meaning being an accepted part of society and having a roof over your head and food in your beely), that without these things one cannot realistically consider or attain spirituality/enlightenment etc


Just a little addendum for anyone not familiar with Maslow's hierarchy of needs.  Info can be found here:  http://web.utk.edu/~gwynne/maslow.HTM
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