Friday, September 2, 2011

Would you rather insure... or invest?

Earlier this week I watched a video that reminded me of something I've been thinking a lot about lately... This video by Charlie Chaplin had a lot of salient points and although I may not have understood or agreed 100% with all of it, the one thing that struck me was our human-ness and how helping another soul in need is integral to who we are as humans.

In today's evolving society and with the ever-increasing depths of evil the human mind can conceive and get the rest of the body to co-operate in carrying out,  it's easy to make excuses to NOT help those in need. Family does not look out for you anymore, friends let you down, and as for lovers (whether at the dating or marriage level), the less said about them, the better.

However, as I walked to class today, I thought about how reaching out to another in need is like an investment and how many of us choose to buy insurance instead. I am not a finance person so my analogy is quite basic here. Don't think too far if that is your field.

When we help another, we invest and a lot could happen to our investment. The financial markets may crash, a corrupt board of directors may squander our hard earned cash, or we could realize our investment was a scam, pure and simple. On the other hand, we could strike oil and make it big. If the person you help decides to bite the finger that fed it, it's a bad investment. Otherwise, you get your dividends, in cash and in kind(get your minds out of the gutter).

When we do NOT help, we could liken it to buying insurance in that we get to keep and safeguard what belongs to us against uncertainty. Definitely, insurance isn't 100% safe because claims could be denied, etc. but for the most part, we keep and protect what we have.

It seems sometimes that we are all buying insurance. I am guilty. Everyone is protecting what they have and not paying any forward. Whilst wealth may be preserved this way, none is created.

I pray that for the rest of the year and onward, we will all have the grace needed to make prudent investments with our time, our voice, our talents and capabilities, our support, encouragement, and material possessions when need be.

It's not easy, given how treacherous humans (remember this includes ourselves) can be. However it is easy when we think about the fact that we will carry none of these to the other side. When we die, our talents, money, etc. wont go with us. But the good we did with them may be paid forward into what awaits us in the afterlife. And I believe if we truly look hard enough, we'll find that more often than not, investments pay off in this life as well.


  1. Nice analogy. Investments definitely for me. I find that when I reach out to others or help others that's when i'm happiest. Insurance shouldn't be ignored too but should be done with wisdom. Happy new month!

  2. Investments for me, definitely. It makes a difference to others and it makes us better people too in more ways than one.

  3. Some people sneer, but I appreciate a good dose of cynicism in the morning. Nothing like the troubles of reality to keep one grounded.

  4. You said everything I could say in a comment.
    It has been easier for me to give of myself since realizing that NOTHING I have belongs to me.
    I have seen respected professionals in a field, with multiple degrees and certifications, end up working at grocery stores at a time when they should be close to retirement. They attended all the schools themselves, graduated did all the work for the experience and yet none of that belonged to them to use anyway they pleased.

  5. Thank you so much for visiting my blog :). Thanks for your lovely comments. Great blog post by the way!