Some say that “greed is good.” How healthful of a spirit is it?

An excerpt from my book, A Glimpse of Heaven: The Philosophy of True Health – from Chapter XI: “True Faith and the Three Portents”…

“A sense of entitlement – as mentioned earlier herein – a sense that I, or the group I am born into or attached to, is better and/or more deserving, has a palpable intrinsic connection to greed. In what is now coined the Great Recession, we find ourselves in a terrible state of circumstances. It is quite clear that a primary root of this grave and highly convoluted financial debacle is greed.

It is likely obvious to many, that as a philosophy, capitalism has both its positive and negative features. In its practical application, capitalism is generally a good thing when its practice is congruent with well-meaning/honest ethical standards – as is the case with most of those who work in the financial industry. Albeit, experts in sociology assert that at least five to ten percent of human beings display criminal tendencies and/or are conclusively corrupt. Thus, it certainly could be a logical assumption that at least a small portion of those who work in the financial industry actually do utilize their financial skills in a fashion which is not congruent with well-meaning/honest ethical standards. This is an unmistakably scary thing.

Some say that “greed is good.” Consistent with the philosophy set forth herein, we could say that well-meaning healthful ambition is good, but greed, when consistent with a spirit of entitlement and/or overt selfishness, is certainly not good – particularly when financial operatives widely abuse the financial instruments at their disposal. The financial world is an incredibly complicated one. Investing one’s hard-earned money into any of a wide array of entities (for instance – stocks, bonds, commodities,retirement funds, or even a mortgage) necessitates a truly important thing: Trust. When those who we trust on such a significant level ‘turn their backs’ on us, their customers, the result can obviously be truly devastating.

As we have seen in this Great Recession, greed has foreshadowed, been the significant cause, of this terrible financial debacle. The spirit of greed is not compatible with well-meaning healthful ambition – quite obviously not compatible with trying to do the right thing for the right sake. ‘Holding true’ to the faith and trust that others bestow in us requires a semblance of substantive healthful faith in our own ability to do our ‘best’ a significant majority of the time. There are periods in which our judgment is not ‘up-to-par,’ but these should not be inclusive of breaches of trust which significantly effect the financial wellbeing of even one individual…or the masses. Taking meaningful responsibility for ourselves is clearly possible if we employ a sincere effort. We have the ability to enforce healthful change – there is strong evidence that even a majority of criminals have the ability to make positive healthful changes in their lives.

There is very little in life that we can be clearly certain of – which makes faith so important. Albeit, most significant of all is faith which necessitates true effort – ahealthful bright beautiful true faith which is most often not dominated by the darker side of our natures. This way-of-being is consistent with the notion of True HealthThrough True Responsibility – taking true responsibility for our own health and wellbeing. Is there a fair-minded well-meaning valid argument against this concept? Would the world be a much better and different place if more and more people displayed such genuine effort? Each of us has the ability to find out. It is up to us as to whether we choose to look within ourselves – without debilitating levels of fear – learning to witness ourselves and our world in a more and more unblemished fashion. It is up to us to decide for ourselves what is right – without unhealthful selfishness. It is up to us as to whether we allow ourselves the true freedom to become more and more roundly educated, compassionate, loving – a healthful way-of-being, devoid, or mostly devoid of the suffocating heavy miserable weight of hate, greed, and ignorance. Such freedom can allow us an evolving wherewithal to enjoy the ability to be more and more rational/logical in ‘connecting-the-dots’ between healthful insights in our daily lives – a notion in the traditions of the health and wellness arts that I teach and coach, coined Pattern Literacy. Realization of this level of practical insight is the embodiment of dignity, decency, goodness, and grace – the ‘true responsibility of healthful interaction, with ourselves and others. It is a stunning example of true health.” — Dr. Glen Hepker  (Copyright 2011)
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2 thoughts on “Some say that “greed is good.” How healthful of a spirit is it?

  1. Outstanding Dr. Glen. Even now, so many are overwhelmed by the level of greed that lurks behind the Great Recession. Your article is brave in tackling this phenomenon, and you do so with brevity and clarity. How fitting that a call to true health, including decency and grace, would be the remedy.


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