Ancient Money Lessons From The Richest Man In Babylon
-A part of all you earn is yours to keep.
-Make every dollar you save your slave to work for you. And, make its children work for you.
About 4000 years ago there was a thriving city in the middle-east called Babylon. Today it would be located in what is now called Iraq.
This city was a rich, powerful, and influential city that was the envy of the world around it. They had beautiful buildings, art, and amazing architecture.
Babylon became the wealthiest city of the ancient world because its citizens were the richest people of their time. They appreciated the value of money. They practiced sound financial principles for acquiring money, keeping money and making their money earn more money.
It had many wealthy people. Among them was a very rich man named Arkad. He might have been the Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, or Warren Buffet of his time. He was famed for his great wealth!
Even though he spent great sums of money, his wealth seemed to increase more rapidly than he spent it.
As in all cities, there were also people of low incomes who had only enough to live. Some were friends of Arkad’s from his younger years.
They wondered how he could have become so wealthy! How was it that Arkad could spend and spend and yet his wallet was always full?
They decided to go ask him personally to share his secrets.
They said, “You Arkad, are more fortunate that we. You have become the richest man in all Babylon while we struggle for existence. You can wear the finest garments and you can enjoy the rarest foods, while we must be content if we can clothe our families in raiment that is presentable and feed them as best we can.”
How did you do it since we at one time were equal? We had the same teachers, played the same games and you never out-shined us!
It didn’t seem that you worked harder than us so why are we not deserving of the good things of life?
Arkad said to them, “If you have not acquired more than a bare existence in the years since we were youths, it is because you either failed to learn the laws that govern the building of wealth, or else you do not observe them.”
Arkad told them that one day he figured that in order to achieve what he desired, it would require time and study. He decided to find out how one might accumulate wealth, and when he found out, he would make it his task to do it well.
His friends were eager to learn his secrets. They agreed that they would meet regularly so that he could teach them the lessons that he learned about accumulating wealth.
Here are the ancient lessons of wealth that Arkad taught them:
LESSON #1- A PART OF ALL YOU EARN IS YOURS TO KEEP.
You must pay yourself first. Make it a habit to keep for yourself one-tenth of all you earn. Every dollar you save is a slave to work for you.
If you are to become wealthy, then you must save some of what you earn, and its children must earn, and all will help you to create the abundance you desire.
“Wealth, like a tree, grows from a tiny seed.”
LESSON #2: DON’T GO TO THE BRICKMAKER FOR ADVICE ABOUT JEWELS!
If you want advice about jewels go to the merchant of jewels. In other words, go to the experts for advice.
Don’t get your advice from your mechanic, your family member, or friend if they are not considered experts in finance. Seek the advice of those whose daily work is handling money.
“He who takes advice about his savings from one who is inexperienced in such matters, shall pay with his savings for proving the falsity of their opinions.”
LESSON #3: CURE YOUR LEAN WALLET OR PURSE
“Seven cures for a lean purse which I do recommend to all men who desire much gold.”
First, for every ten dollars you have in your wallet or purse, take out only nine for your personal use. Only pay out nine-tenths of what comes in.
Don’t buy frivolous things that are soon used up and forgotten. Learn to delay gratification. The luxuries will come later.
Secondly, control your expenditures. How can a person keep one-tenth of all he earns if it is not enough to pay necessary expenses? Arkad said, “what each of us calls our ‘necessary expenses’ will always grow to equal our incomes.”
Thirdly, make your money multiply. Make wise investments and take advantage of the eighth wonder of the world- “compound interest.” Put your money where it may earn interest. However, be cautious as to where you put it. Don’t take risks for which you are not comfortable. Don’t invest in things that you do not understand.
“Gold in a purse is gratifying to own and satisfieth a miserly soul but earns nothing.”
Fourth, guard your money from loss. The first sound principle of investment is security for the principal. Invest only where your principal is safe and where it can earn a fair interest.
Consult with wise men. Secure the advice of those experienced in the profitable handling of money. Let their wisdom protect your money from unsafe investments. Just make sure that your advisors are fiduciaries and are looking out for YOUR best interest and not theirs!
Fifth, own your own home. Arkad recommended that every man own the roof that shelters him and his family instead of paying rent.
Sixth, insure a future income. Save for your retirement and provide some insurance for the protection of your family.
“Provide in advance for the needs of thy growing age and the protection of thy family.”
Seventh, increase your ability to earn. If your wallet or purse is lean, earn more money. Today there are still many people who unfortunately are living paycheck to paycheck.
In today’s world however, there are numerous ways to earn more money to supplement one’s income. For example, there is affiliate marketing, network marketing, YouTube video marketing, blogging, the stock market, selling on E-Bay etc.
You just have to do some research and find something that excites you. Study and learn. There is plenty of training on YouTube. If you are serious about achieving your desires, you will make the time.
“The last remedy for a lean purse is to cultivate thy own powers, to study and become wiser, to become more skillful, to so act as to respect thyself.”
Arkad was an honorable man and a giving teacher. He told his students to go forth and practice what he taught them. Moreover, he told them to teach these truths to others so that they might also prosper. Finally, invest in yourself! Learn financial literacy.
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To your success,
David C Figueroa- Success Coach
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