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Reviewed by Dr. Jordan Alexander for Readers' Favorite
Wisdom for Living Spiritually with Money: How Important is Money? is Dr. Tommy S.W. Wong’s sixth book in the series on Spiritual Living. It is set out in a similar format to other books in the series, where readers follow the dialogue between a young man, Tom, and a spiritual but not religious Guru Harry. Readers are artfully guided to consider the role money plays in life and how it might coexist with living spiritually. The topic of money can sometimes stir up difficult conflicting emotions and beliefs. Is money the root of all evil, or something you cannot live without? Recognizing the contradiction, Dr. Wong skilfully and delicately engages the reader in a series of steps that integrate both the physical and practical need for money in our society and how to practice living with money spiritually. Readers are exposed to how money relates to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs from the body’s physical requirements to love, belonging, and esteem. Once our basic living needs are met, the Guru tells us, we can live a meaningful life with little or no money at all. Where money is managed, Dr. Wong provides practical planning advice for present and future needs and adds a simple summary. “Earnings more than expenses equal happiness. Earnings less than expenses equal misery.”
Dr. Tommy S.W. Wong uses simple language that is easy to follow in Wisdom for Living Spiritually with Money. The real essence is in the time you take as a reader to digest what Guru Harry is saying. I found myself reimagining how I conceive of money in life and was reminded that money itself is neutral. It is how we use money to do good or evil that matters. We can “live meaningfully by doing meaningful things” which in turn helps others and creates a better world. This simple connection reduces any negative connotation around money. So, can we live spiritually with money? Absolutely. We can learn to reduce our attachment to money with Dr. Wong’s guide. We can practice, like the masters, to only take when we give something of practical value in return. And if you don’t have a lot of money, Guru Harry tells us we can still offer value. Say a few kind words, give a smile, and act with morality. All are practical ways to live spiritually that won’t cost you a cent. A great read.