How Rich Are You?

What truly determines richness? Is it all about money?

Whenever we encounter the term “rich”, we subliminally conclude on our heads, “Ah! A million dollars and a giant mansion!” Conceivably, wealth is always associated with lifestyle. Nevertheless, money is only one factor of one’s richness.

Try for example this logic:

A luxurious Audi A7 car can be bought by money, and money is earned with one’s salary, and a salary is a major indicator of one’s wealth. Therefore, if I own a luxurious Audi A7, I am rich. It’s cost-production perspective, think about it.

Perhaps, but that is an over generalization, and one can always engage in reductio ad absurduma form of argument wherein a premise is disproven by following its implications logically to an absurd consequence. Take a real estate property in Zurich, for example; properties like cars can be bought too. What differs between the two are the intrinsic value and deterministic properties they both hold. I would say better indicators of wealth would be health (specifically age and intellectual faculties), assets (monies and properties, etc.) and networks. There seems to be a focus on asset value, which I agree is arguably the most pertinent of the three, but the body is useless without the head.

We are so focused on the material factors of wealth that we are not aware of it being justified wrong. A man cannot simply be called rich because of the visible variables he owns, rather as a set of factors acting upon him. Subsequently, if a man owns all the factors but is unable to sustain it, he would not be called rich for long.

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3 thoughts on “How Rich Are You?

  1. As always, a thought-provoking post. The thing about us humans, we rely entirely on signals and cues, becoming conditioned to certain sights, sounds, shifts in our enviornment, to determine exactly what is going on with us and with the world around us. The unfortunately common assocation of appearance to intelligence and wealth is somehow both amusing and disheartening. Last night I was just reading about an experiment several years ago in which two groups of ordinary people were told to attempt to determine the intelligence of a child simply by observing the kid for several minutes. The trick? Beforehand, one group was told that the child was of high socioeconomic status, and the other group, that the child was of low SES. The end result was that the group that was told that the child was of high status percieved the child as above average intelligence, and the second group saw the child as having below-average intelligence… Ah, society, with our little status-quos and cliches aplenty…

    1. Ah, of course, stereotypes. The world can’t escape this reality. Stereotypes are generally tentative hypotheses, but what sets it a part from guesses (that may be viewed as an ignorant one) is it having a former basis (e.g. embedded from culture, reproduced through socialization and exposure), which quite evolve from time to time.

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