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Wealth Is a Conscious Act

Wealth is a conscious act. It must be chosen. It is the creation of the human mind and it cannot come into being of itself. Wealth is what
is relevant, is the product of creative choices and is how the universe materializes in reality the values of those conscious choices, there.
When what we do, in terms of human value, is relevant to us and tends to increase in value, we create wealth.

We can all create wealth. When we do in such a way as to build or to decorate or in some other way to form a thing of value to us, we
create wealth. But, in order to be wealth, it must be recognized as such. It is not wealth if it has no human meaning, if it is not relevant to
us in our mind and our being. If what we do has no value to either ourselves or to anyone else, then it cannot be said that the universe is
materializing itself with value there. Then, that action is being done for itself and, in terms of wealth, is meaningless. If what we do only
serves to lower value, to destroy it, then it can be said that the universe is working to destroy wealth there. If we have the power to
create value, wealth, we also have the power to destroy it. How we choose to either create or destroy determines whether we can or
cannot have wealth.

We cannot be given wealth if we do not have the power to earn it. To earn wealth is a conscious and productive action. The first
condition of gaining wealth is that we are able to recognize it. If we do not recognize it, then we are not able to use it wisely or preserve it
for the future and we are in danger of mindlessly consuming it. Consumed, it ceases to be wealth. Also, wealth must be exchanged for
either another value of wealth or an ability; it must be earned. If we do not have the power to earn wealth through exchange, then we do
not have the power to maintain it. But if we can both recognize and maintain wealth, that is, that we do not instead consume it, then that
wealth as it is being used or consumed is also being replenished. Then that level of wealth can either remain constant or it can grow.
When we have the presence of mind, the consciousness, with which to use wealth wisely, and to recreate it as it is being used, then it is
not lost.

Thus, individual wealth is a state of mind. It is how the mind is able to create in relation to its identity, its definition, within its reality.
The more conscious the mind and the more it is correctly positioned within its reality, the more it is free from coercion and the more it is
itself, the greater is its ability to choose and create wealth. How a mind is in the universe, according to its level of personal development
within its identity, so will be reflected in its reality that level of development in its personal wealth. What will surround it in its personal
environment, in its possessions, will reflect that developed state of mind. If it is simple, plain, only ascetically aesthetic, then it reflects
that personality; if it is lavish, ornate, materially abundant, then it represents a personality reflected by these. Whether primitive or highly
progressive, or whether plain or gaudy, it is the reflection of the mind as it chooses its reality. On a social level, how that mind chooses in
its society, how it is free to choose and seek itself within its reality, in agreement and free from coercion, will be reflected how that
society will materialize its level of wealth. Then, a free individual will materialize in his or her personal social reality that same value that
is defined by his or her definition in reality. If the reality is graceful, creative, beautiful, then so will these be reflected in its social reality.
If that individual is instead lowly, destructive, coarse, then so will that personal poverty become the social poverty. Social wealth is the
state of the society's individuals.

Thus, wealth is a product of human creation. A society is wealthy because the individuals who live in it are creative, hard working,
productive, and because they have an appreciation for that which they are doing. They have respect for one another's property, they do
not seek to destroy all they touch, they do not take by force, are honest in their dealings, and they seek to better rather than to trample
and break apart. How they do this is a reflection of their state of mind as a whole society; how they succeed, regardless of their level of
technical achievements, is a reflection of their level of civilization. A society is wealthy because the individuals within it care for their own
and each other's personal realities, their human value; it is also wealthy because they are free to do that which they can do best.

A social order will always create wealth if the individuals within it are free to do so. Whether this wealth will be in the form of simple
wood or stone carvings, or whether it will be a highly technical and organized form of social capital, will depend upon that society's
orientation and the level of its individuals' collective development. If it has the ability and the resources, in addition to the freedom, it will
tend towards those things that are made possible by civilization; if these are absent, then it will be immersed in the consequences of its
own manifested reality. If they are dynamic, then their civilization is an active and creative society producing wealth; if they are passive,
then their civilization may instead be peaceful and idyllic. What they choose will materialize as their social reality. Whether or not we
approve of it is then but a personal value judgement; free, they can become in their society as they please. The successes or failures of
their society then can only be measured in terms of what are their social expectations. These successes or failures will be determined by
their social mind and the freedom with which this mind is able to materialize is reality.

When a society of individuals rises in sophistication beyond the level of each individual's self sufficiency, it of necessity develops that
mechanism that allows individuals to trade that which they personally create. Individuals are then able to exchange, they can bypass their
immediate personal needs, with what they create from their personal labor in exchange for what it is they need or desire. Consequently, it
is then possible to devote one's abilities towards producing something for which one has no personal need but instead, through the
market, for which there is a great need from elsewhere in society. If one can produce this efficiently, so fashioned from care and skill as
to make it most desirable, most competitive, then one is producing from one's abilities in a way that is most desirable and beneficial to
society as a whole. It is possible that one individual work on a part, that without the work of another individual on another part with
which can be formed a whole, would be in itself valueless. Through the market, however, as these two parts join together into a useful
whole, it becomes a useful and valuable item. Thus, separately, their ability to create wealth is limited, since neither piece without the
other is of significant value. Together, when these are joined into one, their final product is one of much greater value and, consequently,
of greater wealth. Such is the power of exchange through agreement. Markets join together what can become of greater value than what
had existed of lesser value separately.

Because of free markets, individuals are free to concentrate their efforts and skills on those things which they are best able to produce, in
which they are most productive, and from which the market society will give them the greatest income. They will tend to work towards
where their labors will yield the greatest value to them. If the individuals are craftsmen, then they can produce what may approach the
finished product and which will approach that product's final market value. Then, on what they labor will be on what will be received
their income as that product is sold. If, however, the labor is on what has no market value, in itself valueless without being used with
something other, such as a part of a machine, then that labor would not be considered productive without the combined efforts of others.
The part so produced is contingent on the cooperation of the labor and productivity of others in their specialized task. This could apply
either to an assembly line employee fitting a particular part on another, or it could be an executive entrusted with the responsibility for
decisions within a certain area of operations; either individual needs the cooperation of the other to be rendered productive in his labor.
Without the other, each person's efforts yields little value; together, they form a valuable, if marketable, product from which the
proceeds of its sale will pay for their wages and reflect their individual level of productivity within the whole operation. Each contributed
to that value according to his or her skills and labors, and each received from society as those skills and labors were needed and desired
there. How those were valued were then the derivative of those judgements and agreements that arrived at their value then and there, in
terms of the state of everything else. Labor applied towards where will be gained the greatest income will then tend to be the most

In a sophisticated society with a developed market exchange system, economic wealth is a function of how we choose to create with, and
then allocate the products of our human and physical economic resources. How we do this reflects on how we create our wealth and in
how we subsequently value that wealth in the aggregate of individual exchanges, the market. How we apply our income towards
investment determines how we allocate those resources towards the formation of capital, and how we apply our labor with the advantage
of that capital determines how we succeed converting that capital into our social wealth. Then, how we succeed in this creation, how this
wealth is relevant to the other members of our society, determines the value that society will place on this wealth, which will determine
how we will be individually compensated for it. Then, the enterprise can be judged a success and the value received for our productivity
was meaningful in terms of how it benefited society as a whole. As opposed to the mechanics of a primitive society, in a sophisticated
society it is not necessary to spend one's efforts entirely on a product that will have value only in its finished form; rather, one may be
more useful to society as a whole, and more productive in terms of the income received and what that income will buy, if the labor
expended is more relevant when it is combined with the labor and productivity of others. Then, we are most productive and are able to
create a level of wealth that would be impossible if the same efforts were expended in a more primitive society. But this must be chosen;
it cannot come about by itself and it may not be the most desirable state of affairs in all societies equally. For a society to reach that level
of economic sophistication, it must be conscious of its production of wealth and how it has achieved it; otherwise, it will quickly dissipate

When individuals are free, they choose. What and how they choose then becomes the level of activity that is their society. Not all
societies need choose the same production of wealth; other than perhaps for a feeling of economic independence and self sufficiency,
there is no virtue in producing the same products that are produced elsewhere. When the world markets permit it, when they are free to
operate and are free from excessive costs of risk or coercion, as in war, then what nations can produce together may surpass what they
can produce alone. What they gain in compensation is then judged by how the world's markets receive their products, and how the world
receives them is contingent upon how their products, at their prices, compare with such products produced elsewhere. Then, individuals
are free to choose how to best produce and how to best exchange; together, jointly rather than singly, nations can then create a level of
world wealth that would not be possible without their joint cooperation.

If, for example, a society is rich in natural resources and is able to sell those resources to the world, then it can contribute to the world's
wealth what would not have otherwise been available. The income from these resources could serve that society either with economic
resources for reinvestment or goods for consumption. How it decides the use of its income becomes entirely a function of how its
individuals appraise their future needs and how they need to satisfy their present demands. If, however, a country has no resources,
then, unless there be some severe social handicap, such as social crime and theft or tyranny, it has the ability to provide human labor.
The more sophisticated this labor, the more helped it is by a progressive level of manufacturing capital, the greater will be its productivity
and the greater will be the value it can produce in the world's economy. Then, with the income from this labor, it can choose to either
enrich its social level of wealth through a still greater development of productive capital or it can spend it on its immediate needs and
pleasures; that choice, again, is entirely left to that society's social mind. If it chooses to create wealth rather than to consume it, then it

There is still one other example. It is where a society is neither rich in natural resources that could be sold to the world markets, nor
endowed with skilled productive labor competitive with that of other societies. However, if it is rich in scenery and natural attractions
attractive for tourism, it then has a form of capital. This may be less than expected, since the tourist services may be provided by
enterprises that are from abroad of that society. If so, then the proceeds of such tourism may not be employed back into the host country
and be repatriated back to the society abroad. Yet, it would still induce local employment and generate income in the local economy. If
this enterprise is attractive, then it will attract more capital, both from within the host country as well as from guest entrepreneurs.
Though what may be spent by the tourists visiting these natural resources of beauty may in fact be but a small fraction of the income
spent by them locally if much is repatriated abroad. However, this would be one way of measuring the value of a tourist market by how
much income it can generate in relation to goods and services that then can be purchased by the members of that society. In terms of
world income, if a society has no more to offer than its natural wonders and attractiveness as a desirable place to visit, then so be it. It is
its contribution to the world's wealth. If that should in time induce investments in other areas, such as manufacture, then its value as a
magnet of tourism is then but a temporary value. Nothing need remain the same when it is free to change. But this is but a mental
exercise which we need follow no further.

What all societies share in common, however, regardless of their level of economic sophistication, whether a highly productive industrial
and technological society or whether a tropical island paradise, is that what they each have to offer can have greater value if in
cooperation with world markets than if produced only entirely for domestic consumption. As in the case of individual productivity,
nations can produce more in relation to the world's wealth if they trade and concentrate their efforts on developing that in which they
excel and from which they can gain the greatest income. Then, whether or not they succeed becomes a function of how free are the
individuals within that society to take advantage of that expanded market. If the world markets are free to materialize those exchanges,
then the world's economies will reflect a greater level of wealth. If they are coercive, restrictive of trade and punitive towards individual
agreements and confiscatory, or corrupt; if the internal national reality is coercive towards its citizens and disruptive of their creative
efforts; and if the reality is also such as to force coercion, as in war, the disruption of world's markets will be harmful to all those who
had entered it and learned to rely on that market. Then, individuals within productive and free nations will seek to trade only within like
environments and avoid those that are unfree; the loss felt is most severe in those countries whose reality is one of coercion rather than
of cooperation by agreement.

Wealth is an act of creation; it cannot come from social disorder. Whether this disorder is caused by a fierceness of a society's people, or
by laws that encourage trespass, or by attitudes that punish creative and productive labor, then such a society's ability to create wealth is
severely hindered. Its population remains poor, perhaps with wealth concentrated only in the hands of a small privileged class which had
gained it by confiscation or other corrupt means. But that is not the natural state of things; it is the least natural state in a society based on
the principle of exchange by agreement. Wealth cannot be created from coercion or theft; it must be created from human ability and
uncoerced human labor. In a world where value is exchanged by agreement, the wealthy person is the one who is best able to create
wealth and who is most instrumental in contributing this ability to society as a whole; it is not he or she who is most a thief, since that is
the method to wealth in a society of coercion. Unless wealth was gained by force, and it can be proven so, then that wealth was gained
by means of agreement as that agreement had materialized around that person's creative and productive ability. Then, how that ability
materialized and was accepted by others is how it was valued in exchange. The more creative and productive that ability, the greater that
person's level of personal wealth, and the greater the level of wealth in society as a whole. To then take from that person his or her
wealth by force, against agreement if innocent of trespass, is of no social benefit and is harmful to the individual from whom it is being
taken; it is of benefit to no one since, then, the thieves unconscious of its value will quickly dissipate it. A society is not wealthy because
it is most coercive, since then it only consumes capital. For a society to be most capable of wealth, it must be least coercive.

Thus, the society that will be most wealthy is that which can best shelter its individuals from coercion and which has the most free access
to the world's markets. The agreements that describe its social reality need not be identical to the social agreements of other societies;
they should be a natural reflection of the collective identity of its people. What must be identical, or at least consistent, with other
societies if they are to be successful is that its citizens are free to form agreements and, if they choose to do so, are free to choose
wealth. Then, wealth as a social product will follow of its own virtue. A society's success in wealth will not be a function of its ability to
coerce, but rather its ability to be free from coercion, both internally and against foreign invaders. Then, internally, its individuals will
freely form those agreements and values that are most relevant to them; externally, they will be most able to create and contribute to the
world's level of wealth. Free of inner and outer social abuse, capable of its defense and conscious of its strengths, such a nation becomes
most conscious of its identity and most solid in its presence in the world. Then, it becomes the symbol of a free nation, powerful because
it values individual freedom. Its citizens are free to pursue their personal identity and free to preserve that which is most valuable to
them. Conscious of this freedom, they gain the courage and the ability to materialize the value of that freedom, and they become a nation
of great economic strength. Wealth flows there.


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