March 28, 2013

If I was a Rich Girl.

Source: timetrotswithal.tumblr.com viaStephle on Pinterest

Na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na.

See, I’d have all the money in the world, if I was a wealthy girl.

(Alright, I’ll stop singing Gwen Stefani, but you can go ahead and look this song up if you don’t know it yet and feel like having a tune stuck in your head all day. If you’ve been humming along then you’re welcome.)

This article is a sort of response to my own most recent piece There’s Something Wrong with Our Fame-Driven Yoga Community.

In it, I discuss how it personally disturbs me to see such a connection between athletically-inclined yogis and fame, via a few highly popular yoga media outlets. The responses of reader comments varied, but some wrongly assumed that I’m anti-fame or wealth. For the record, I’m not. What I’m against is the sole purpose of seeking these things out, in area of life, but especially through a yoga-centered career.

Actually, what really got me thinking about my own need to clarify was a comment on the elephant yoga Facebook page that stated “Oh the irony.”

I hope most of my readers know that I’m intelligent and thoughtful enough to have thought about the possibly misconstrued irony of me writing this piece for elephant journal, which is in its own right a very successful publication.

The thing is, that this is exactly my point.

I’m not against a business doing well for itself. Rather, business has to do well if it has a message to spread, because otherwise this message isn’t reaching anyone. (Right now, I’m thinking specifically of Stonyfield dairy products.)

However, what becomes almost a pet peeve of mine is when a person or business is seemingly about “doing good,” yet the honest driving force is the lust for money and fame—and the power that comes with these two things.

The power behind money can be used beneficially—I absolutely believe this.

One reason I began this blog with a cheesy pop melody is because I was singing this song in my shower this morning, and it got me thinking about what would I do if I was famous and wealthy? (“Oh the irony” isn’t actually that ironic because some people that I go to yoga class with regularly don’t even know my name, much less that I’m a well-known writer writing about fame, as was my understanding of part of the underlying meaning of this sarcastic commentary. In answer to the other aspect of this question, am I seeking fame, read on.)

I’d definitely buy my husband a new car and a new mountain bike. (To be fair, you have no idea how old his car is. Old.)

I’d also buy a new house. (We rent, so we plan on buying one anyways.)

If I’m being honest, I’d most assuredly buy that Dogeared necklace I’ve been eyeing.

However, I’d also make sure that everything that entered my house was organic and came from a small, local farm. (We try, but money certainly helps these green, mindful choices become consistent realities.)

I’d consider self-publishing the book I wrote that I think has a meaningful place on society’s bookshelf, instead of waiting for that perfect big publishing house to pick me up.

In short, I don’t think I’d change a lot of my life. I wouldn’t go out and splurge on a new closet of clothes or get my nails done every week (just once a month; I know how to be conservative). Seriously, though, money doesn’t have to be our enemy.

What is our enemy is the greed and attachment that some people have for money, wealth, power and fame.

All I was asking of my readers with my last article was to think about our societal attachment—especially in our yoga community—to something that not only doesn’t really matter, but doesn’t make our world a better, or even happier, place.

Cliche but true that love is what makes the world go ’round and money doesn’t buy happiness. However, I guess (for the time being at least), I’m not totally sold that money is the root of all evil. This root is actually that greed and attachment.

So when you see my name in bold print across my book cover, don’t think I sold out—but you can feel free to ask me what I’m spending my money on.


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Ed: Kate Bartolotta

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