I hate to think of it this way, and some may even think that I am just being plain unrealistic about life that it does not always revolve around money alone, and that sometimes we can truly find happiness in something else, but it could be denial in a way when the materialistic just shouts back at us with the harsh realities of survival.
It is really not easy to just think of a life without money, or with barely enough to survive.
Sure, we have all heard of those stories of baring it all, and go forth with our dreams and embark on our self-created adventure to truly enjoy the best of what life has to offer. It sounds great and I know it can be a reality too, but it's not truly an easy feat for everyone in the world, as the world is not revolving only around us and there are still our loved ones and many more to consider.
I know it may sound a little bitter, and I am not trying to pour cold water onto your dreams, not just yet, but there are a lot of things to consider before you take that plunge.
Being born an Asian taught me a lot about traditional values, and sometimes, give us that hard kick into the reality of the living world, or in other words, materialism.
I am sure most of you have been told the same thing since you were young, that we ought to study hard so that we don't end up as garbage collectors, janitors or even the MPPJ workers sweeping the road, etc. We were also being brainwashed to worship professions like doctors, lawyers, engineers and such (the white collars) that they are much better than the rest of the world.
We should grow up with a good degree, preferably with those approved degrees required to end up in the above professions and then land ourselves jobs in all of the above, or in big corporate companies.
It is then that the parents are happy with a large approval and proud of you, that you have paid off their hard work/efforts raising you all these years.
They would then go and brag to their siblings and whoever distant relatives during those major family gatherings about your successes and achievements.
On the contrary, if you did not meet any of the expected guidelines above, you will then be treated with scorn and nasty looks, and even labelled as useless or unfilial scumbags who are just being plain ungrateful and bring shame to the family.
It may sound horrifying to those liberal-minded, but that's how it's like with majority of the Asian households. In fact, even the relatives and friends play a role in creating this social stereotype.
To some, they will say it is for the glory or for a better future of their children, but honestly, can it run away from the big notion of M-O-N-E-Y?
I think you and I both know the answer, it is ALL about the money.
Face it, we do need money to survive, be it for food, for the shelter called home, and even for our basic necessities; bills, allowances for the children/parents, loan repayment, etc. In short, everyone had a reason to need money, and the basis for all these ends with one word: Survival.
Couples quarrel because of money, families break up because of money, vendors and clients fight because of money...money, money, money, everything is about it!
It seemed to be true that money is indeed the root to all evil, but is that all to it?
There was a point in life where I wondered, what happens if money does not exist in this world, will that make everyone happy?
The answer is, I don't think so either.
If money is no longer the magnet, then there would be no one working and overall, nobody would even bother about anything at all.
Everyone of us and also everything around us has a price tag on it; we are all measured by what we are wearing, how much we are earning, where we are living, what kind of car we are driving...and the list just goes on and on.
Heaven forbid if you were to mention that you are not working, or being a freelancer, you will just be greeted with frowns and looks of disapproval that makes you just wanna disappear under the ground.
Why, is the world so darn materialistic?
Are we not given the chance to be what we want sometimes, or do what we like to do, without worrying about the price tags on ourselves or towards others?
We cannot live our life the way we want, or choose the job we want, without being stereotyped or regarded as not being sensible.
I know of friends or even close family members who were pushed into doing something they dislike just because their parents or even the society liked it that way, and unable to handle the pressure, they just chose to avoid facing their own interests and succumbed to the worldly wishes.
It is great to have parents, family members and loved ones who are there to support you at all times, and I do admit that I am lucky enough to have that, although there are times, when I walk out of the house, and I feel that everyone is being judged all over again.
Today, our standards of living is no longer the same nor as affordable as they used to be previously; during our ancestor's days. Those days were the times when you could get a plate of noodles for only a few cents, and buying a house probably cost a hundred or a thousand (worst case), and they could afford to raise three to ten children (some could scrape through).
Fast forward to the present, and you found that your current salary is merely ridiculous to pay off the bills (even if you don't own a house and a car), support the family (i.e: elderly parents, or in-laws, children, dogs), food, transportation and medical, and that is if you have enough by the end of the month!
Even if you are not married, the salary is barely enough for one person to get by the day. There are some whom I know who do not need to support their families, and that they get the salary to their own, but how many of us could have that, especially those who are brought up in the conventional Chinese families (read the expectations above).
I am tired sometimes, of how money is ruling the world and how it determined our mood (happy or unhappy, which half of the time, causes people to be unhappy).
I want to be able to do something I WANT to do, without having my personal price tag being flipped over to be viewed or judged by the watchful eyes.
I am tired...really....and I wished that sometimes, we are all free of these monetary issues (I am not saying I have financial issues).
If I have a choice, I would choose not to let money rule my world, but can I, really???