January 12, 2010

Resenting Rich People may be Neurotic, but it’s also Good Fun!

Is resenting the rich an obstacle to embracing our own sense of unconditional wealth, in the here and now?


A friend shared this quote the other day:

“There is always more misery among the lower classes than there is humanity among the higher.” Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

To which another friend said,

Sad but true.

To which I responded:

I’ve been told to stop resenting rich folk. I’m trying.

To which my friend said:

Ah…yes, I do not actually resent rich folks, nor do I believe that poor folks are necessarily miserable…But the quote has a poignancy—and a truth, though not universal—that made me feel it was worth sharing. I did have the “Hmmm, I don’t 100% believe this,” thought as I posted it.

I guess I need one of those “The opinions represented here do not necessarily reflect those of [me]” disclaimers. Though they reflect them enough for me to represent them..!

To which I said:

I think it’s the isolation / insulation money gives people from reality. I remember being a child wishing some rich person would give my 2-job-working single mom $1,000, how that woulda changed everything for us.

Now, I’m friends with many rich folks…and their attitude toward $1000 is beyond cavalier in some contexts…and beyond stingy in others.

To which the “sad but true” friend commented:
It’s difficult not to feel somewhat frustrated (whether it’s resentment or not) with economic or emotional disparity, however it is manifest. Resentment of the rich connotes attachment to/desire for the wealth and lifestyle, which more or less perpetuates the disparity.

I wish that people would realize that we are each other. If we were able to see that, we would be much more generous with each other. My 2¢, for what it is worth. (I must be “poor” – only 2¢!)

Anyway, Happy New Year to you both!

I thought it a conversation which touched, if lightly, on some interesting notes, seeing as how I’ve spent most of my 35 years being poor, and thinking about being rich, and having many rich friends, and resenting their bubbles, sometimes.

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