Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Does Money Buy Happiness?

According to a report in Tuesday's edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a person’s emotional well-being tends to increase with their income up to about $75,000. (Can Money Buy Happiness?)

This is an interesting report, but I am not surprised by the results. I definitely don’t think money buys happiness, but I can understand how a stable financial situation may make it a little easier to be happy so long as the person has their priorities straight. I think when people are falling on hard times, financial or otherwise, it’s easy to fall into despair and fear. $75,000/year is enough money to meet basic family needs such as clothing, food, and housing and provides a little cushion for some savings and nonessentials. However, there is no clear indication that people that make more than $75,000/year are any happier. In this culture which places so much importance on financial well-being and material things, sometimes the idea of what it means to be happy is misunderstood. A strong faith in God is the best and surest avenue to happiness if you ask me. A strong support system of family and friends is also a great comfort. A stable financial situation may help a person feel happy, but it is not the source of happiness.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Dear Lord, thank you for all the wonderful gifts you have given me.
I know that all good things come from you. May I never lose sight
of what is important in this life. I know that You are the true source
of all happiness. May I never fall into despair and fear no matter what
sort of difficult circumstance comes my way. I trust in You Lord.
I know that You will provide me strength to overcome all obstacles
so long as I remain faithful to You. Look after all those who are poor.
May they find what they need to be able to take proper care of themselves
and their families. Inspire in those of us who have an abundance to
lovingly share our gifts with those less fortunate. In Jesus' name, Amen.

God bless!

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