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This was a very candid question Prof Mankads asked once – ‘What is money?’ and he answered – ‘Money is what is accepted a money.’ True, money is what is accepted as money. Humanity needed some tangible measure so we deviced various forms of money at various time. For example at the time of barter system ‘everything’ was weighted against the other. So everything was acceptable in trade as money. Then came matels and now paper and plastic money (credit cards).

I started thinking if we needed something tangible as money what if we made something like Camay (soap) a currency? If some other things be made money what would happen? Take an example of age – everyone would gradually get money. Fun or being funny – comadians would have maximum money in the world. Seriousness – patients in extremely intencive care units. Trust – Indian politicians or politicians in general would stand nowhere. Spirituality – the spiritual masters would be at the top, one I know is Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

Now if we ask ourselves – who is rich? The simple answer is one who has ‘more’ money. ‘More’ is contextual (adjective). Now, if we take money as fun, being happy or being funny. How many of us are rich today? Kids in school are competing, people are jealous or many of us have only instant gratification and long term sorrow. Not many of us are rich! Has money made anyone happier?

Assume Trust be the currency. How many have earned it? Yes trust is hard earned currency, right? Bankers have lost their trust of 100+ years (see the occupy wall street movement), politicians have lost it. Citizen vote because they think someone will improve the systems. On the contrary we all still remember Jesus, the Buddha and other Masters. Plato, Aristotle and Chanakya. We named unit of force on the name of Newton we say Da Vinci was genius. Were they ‘RICH’ in terms of hoarded money? So, what if we measure richness on different factors now and in future. See this engineer mind thinks of formulae (which is not correct, yet I am writing it) –
Richness = [{(money + Happiness)*Trust/greediness}^(1/greediness)]*(peace of mind)*spirituality
and other important stuff
Range of the variables
0 > Money, Happiness and Trust > 1
Greediness > 1 upto infinite
peace of mind and spirituality> 1
^ stands for raise to the power

I think everyone of us has to identify what we want from our life and that one or few things would be The thing(s) which would make each one of us Rich (not necessarily Money). Of course, this richness should not come at the expense of others or harming others.