From Birth to His Death, Money Reigns Supreme
In the Life of Man
By Apolinario Villalobos
Since the time he was born and while cruising the avenue of life, up to the time he is buried in the ground, man is either gripped by financial pressure or wallowing in riches. Man did not choose to be born. He is the result of copulating couples as they vent out their lust in the name of love or maniacal desire. Man has no choice when he begins his journey on Earth, making do with what may be on hand – either the cold sidewalk to sleep on while writhing with pangs of hunger if he belongs to a homeless poor family…or the sweet luxurious life if he is born to a filthy rich family!
If somebody will tell me that money is not everything in this world, I challenge him to go out without a single coin in his pocket and sleep on sidewalks for several nights without dinner. And, it is not right also to say that money is the root of all evils. It is the abusive exploitation resulting to the deprivation of others that makes money viewed as evil. If there is only fairness in this world, there will be no problem on the issue of wage and the constant soaring of prices of basic commodities, as everything would be affordably fair.
Civilization brought about pollution, so that there is a need for money to counter its effect – medicines, protective clothing, hospitals, healthy food, even the simple surgical mask to somehow block the dirty air from entering our body in vast quantity as we breathe. Civilization created many desires and wants for man. While there was no need for flavor enhancers before, today, for food to taste savory, it must be enhanced with chemicals. While there was no need to travel somewhere before, today, it has become a necessity to satisfy the curiosity about a certain white beach, for instance. While there was no need for frivolous trappings, as simple cotton garments were enough before, today, man has developed a conceited desire to look better than the rest, in his expensive wardrobe and glittering jewelries.
In high-tech first-world countries, governments slap their citizens with sky-high taxes and almost nothing is left with them when they receive their wage, but in exchange for such, there are hospitalization benefit, medical care, etc. , although, controlled by the system. While working hard for the money, the citizens of these nations cannot enjoy its benefit on his free will. In some countries, big savings are questioned and if you are found to be carrying around big amounts, you become suspect of illegal activities. Citizens are forced to use “plastic money” for their “convenience” – the credit cards. In these countries, working parents deposit their children in Day Care centers while they work for the money, a big slice of which goes to the government.
Civilization brought havoc to the once docile life of man. Its onset created competition for food that affected even the so-called “uncivilized” humans living in the vastness of African deserts. Animals that they used to hunt occasionally for food have become scarce and brought to the brink of extinction due to drought that resulted from the destruction of the ozone layer…all because of unabated pollution. Animals hunted for food have become targets for “game hunting” and left to rot after they are felled by bullets from high-powered long-arms intended for such purpose. Big preys have become targets of bounty hunters for medicine and amulets. Those are just a few of the acts of exploitation committed by the moneyed for which the exploited poor persevere.
In the Philippines, there is a custom that calls for the throwing of coins on the path of the mourners as they bring the remains of the departed to the cemetery. Some archaeological diggings brought to light mummified remains with gold coins that cover their eyes. The practice of “changing money” has its roots from the brisk business of the shrewd money changers at the gate of the temples during the Biblical time. These money changers converted various foreign coins into the local tender that could be used as temple offering. Jesus died on the cross because of betrayal by Judas in exchange of several pieces of silver coins.
Money cannot be done away with even by all churches. How can edifices for worship be built without money? How can the evangelists preach on empty stomach? How can they go on shepherding their flocks if they get sick and got no money for medicine? How can a Mass be held early in the morning or evening if the lights are out because of unpaid electric bill?…etc.
There is nothing wrong with money for as long as it is respected and not abused. Most importantly, it should be acknowledged as payment for earthly necessities. Hypocrisy should be done away with in the treatment of money, because it is clearly the fair payment to the priest, for instance, who blessed the remains of the dead person or when he did other acts as required by his vocation, and again…nothing is wrong with that. My unsolicited advice in this regard is…RESPECT MONEY BY USING IT THE PROPER WAY. MOST IMPORTANTLY, DO NOT BE SELFISH BY GRABBING FROM OTHERS WHAT ARE SUPPOSED TO BE THEIRS!