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Friday, October 23, 2009

De-Scrooge

One of the first short stories I studied in college was D. H. Lawrence's "The Rocking-Horse Winner."

In it, a boy named Paul is magically able to predict winners at the local track by riding his rocking horse.

And what drives him to do so? He heard his house whispering, "There must be more money! There must be more money!"

Paul was "Scrooged," and in the end [SPOILER ALERT!] it led to his death.

How do we get Scrooged? Previously I've mentioned the effects of advertising, the need to "Keep up with the Joneses."

But it's deeper than that. It comes, as in Paul's case, from deep-seated insecurities.

This odd word I'm using comes, of course, from the name of Ebenezer Scrooge, a character in the wonderful Charles Dickens story, A Christmas Carol. I was privileged to teach it to bright 12-year-olds every Christmas for five years, and they uncovered a wealth of meaning in it.

But it all came down to Scrooge's fear. The fear of being alone, unloved, taken advantage of. And the idea that, somehow, money would compensate for all this.

Remember, it's not money that's "the root of all evil," it's the love of money.

So De-Scrooge yourself. Deprogram the idea that money will somehow buy love. Wipe "the dollar signs" out of your eyes, and take them off the throne of your life.

You'll be happier.

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