What are you living for?

Inspired by the comment of Klaus on my last post, I started thinking about what really means stage 4 and 5 of Maslow’s pyramid of needs. This is not so easy as these stages obviously are much more complex and immaterial as the somehow “tangible” stages 1-3. This post from “Tao of Wealth” seems to be a good first step to me.


The Tao Of Wealth

What am I living for


Fortune: Money is needed for many things in our lives. We should work for money and save it and spend in wisely. But making accumulating as much money as you can as the goal of your life is not right. Because money cannot make you happy or satisfied by itself. We need to be contented with what we get in life. We also need to give money in charity and to those who need it and for worthwhile causes. For when we die, will money come with us? How we use money in our lives is important, but never chase money as your goal.

Fame: Fame is empty. Fame is a vapour. It comes and it always goes. Do not go after it. In case it comes into your life, use it well to serve others and be humble. Do not become…

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8 comments on “What are you living for?

  1. Hans says:

    “Faith” is an incredible waste of time. Why believe in something stupid somebody maybe said long time ago?
    The ultimate goal of life is pleasure. What else?

    • mrwoodpecker says:

      Hi Hans,

      I am undecided on this one yet.

      Strictly rational, your argument sounds correct.
      However faith does indeed increase happiness and contentment in life significantly in all happiness research studies, so you must never talk faithful people out of it.

      May I ask your age?
      Because literature also says faith is becoming more appealing with age.

      As I myself get older I am more and more fascinated by the wonder of life and that all this things and thoughts exist, so while being a very scientific person, my personel assessment of the likelyhood of “something metaphysical being out there” is increasing.
      And this trail of thought is at least very very interesting, so I would not subscribe to discard “faith” as easily as you do.
      Never struck me as a waste of time to think about these things, although I am not religious or anything.

      Try it!


  2. Hans says:

    Regarding faith and age:

    I am 53 years.
    If you get older and you are with one foot in the grave already,
    then people are inclined to belive into eternal life – the selling proposition
    of almost all religions.
    Julius Caesar remarked:: Libenter homines id, quod volunt, credunt.
    People like to believe what they wish for.

    Regarding faith and happiness

    People born in the western belive in Christianity, people in Arabia believe in Islam,
    People in India believe in Hinuism etc…
    I guess in all these cases happiniess is not correlated to faith but correlated
    to staying in the herd.

    • mrwoodpecker says:

      Hi Hans,

      Thanks for the comment.
      However I think your explanation is a bit too simple.

      Because in fact the “herd” of today (at least in Germany) is NOT believing in religion (or anything else) and NOT having faith.

      I know only very few people that stand up for their faith, and they generally have a hard time defending it.

      And still, happiness research shows a high correlation between faith and happiness, also in Germany.

      And besides after-live, I think faith (in whatever you want, it does not have to be your state religion), can provide a feeling of “beloning”. Certainly something that is needed for the upper stages of Maslov, and equally certain in very short supply these days.

      Besides that, faith is an interesting area to explore both from an intellectual and from a more gut-feeling and non-rational angle in my view.

      I would not call me a religious person but rather a rational one, but it does give me direct pleasure to think about these things, so it is clearly not wasted time.
      Plus I am curious where it leads to.

      Highly recommended to anyone who did not try these kinds of thoughts yet, especially for those fans of rationality who find that something is still missing (that would include myself).


  3. Hans says:

    I like what Epicurus had to say about pursuing happiness:


  4. Tom says:

    Lost me at “1000 % commited”. I absolutely abhor the use of inflated percentages. 1000 % commitment is IMPOSSIBLE – you cannot give more than 100 % of your commitment. My respect for the text goes down 1000 %.

    • mrwoodpecker says:

      Ha, we have another mathematician here!
      You are of course right logically – I have a mathematics/physics background myself – but if you would have read on a few bullets further you’d have read about “compassion”. Thus I think that one should not judge the author’s text on a tiny issue like typos or uncorrect mathematics.

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