- The wealthy elite in Ukraine have been forced to declare their wealth.
- Some officials declared millions of dollars in cash and hordes of diamonds and luxury cars
- The average income in Ukraine is $200 a month.
- Social pressure led the elite to horde wealth while their countrymen starved
- We here at The Daily Meditation are teaching compassion to the wealthy to help them help those in need. You can help us with a donation.
An anti-corruption reform has forced Ukraine’s officials to declare their wealth. And it’s damn time officials in the US and UK did likewise.
History was made in the Ukraine last week, when 100,000 officials declared their assets under a new declaration system. The move puts pressure on politicians and officials in other countries around the world, including in the US and UK, to be forthright and honest about their assets.
Ukraine’s civil society organisations are calling it “a truly revolutionary step towards eradicating corruption”. And political critics closer to homme see it as a call to our own officials to step up and end their own corruption and greed.
Naturally, journalists and critics are tracing cash and assets to determine the validity of the declarations. This has shed light on how those in power run their financial affairs, and it could have ramifications the world over.
These developments did not come without a fight. The old guard did their all to defend the old, and antiquated, system. But the government held fir, and despite mounting pressure, passed the reform forcing officials to declare their wealth.
The prime minister of Ukraine was one of the first to declare his wealth. And he is inviting critics and journalist to check his statements.
The level of wealth declared has staggered activists and critics. Some declared owning millions of dollars in cash, others owning hordes of luxury vehicles and homes, and others stores of diamonds and jewels. This is in stark contrast to the average civilian in the Ukraine, where the average income is $200 a month.
But if this seems like a horror in a too foreign land, open your eyes. Donald Trump’s net worth is $3.7 billion. The average income in American is $51,000.
You can read more about this story here.
But just what, exactly, stem this level of greed? Amazingly, it’s no different for politicians than it is for you and I. Social pressure is to blame.
Have your rich friends and colleagues ever said “I’m not THAT RICH”? There’s a reason.
It’s wrongly believed by many that crime and drug abuse is higher among the poor. But in truth, levels of both crime and drug abuse are higher in the wealthy than in the average individual. Psychological problems are common in the wealthy elite too. Self-injurious behaviour like cutting and burning are common too.
The problem with the elite is that they expect constant reward and constant success. They expect to excel at school and at business almost without effort, as though it is par for the course. This constant demand for reward can lead them to substance abuse. That’s why they constantly claim “We work hard, we play hard” even though the average wealthy elite works less hard than those on minimum wage.
These demands for rewards and success don’t just exist in their own minds. They’re part of peer pressure too. Whether its kids and school or adults in business, the elite expect each other to succeed, and that social pressure can build and can lead the elite to act in wrongful ways. A millionaire employee, for instance, might cheat his employees to line his own pockets simply because he looks bad compared to his friends, who are even wealthier than he is. And really, unless the average person makes frequent contributions to charities they’ve little right to complain (for you, yourself, are probably a lot richer than many other people, and yes, you probably think you deserve that, but the wealthy elite think likewise, and that is the entire problem).
The wealthy elite are also constantly close to achieving their lofty ambitions. Take Donald Trump. He’s very close to becoming president. Okay, polls suggest he won’t make it. But he is close enough to taste it. And that temptation can make him act wrongfully to secure his ambition, even though to you and I he has no reason to want any more success than he’s already achieved.
These constant pressure for the elite are precisely the same as they are for the average person, which likely includes yourself. What makes you occasionally do the wrong thing? What makes you sometimes act in selfish ways? The usual culprits. Trying to keep up with the Jones’s. Trying to achieve those ambitions that are currently just out of reach. It’s the same deal for you as it is for the wealthy elite.
So how, then, do you change these things. How do you take control of all those pressure in your mind so you can act in rightful ways despite the pressure?
Meditation helps you to take control of your mind and to see past the social pressure. When you meditate you are able to see the inner workings of your mind more clearly.
Imagine being one of Ukraine’s wealthy elite. Even though they are so privileged, they still feel the pressure to keep up with their friends who are even richer than they are. They don’t realise that pressure has a grip on them. So they act wrongfully. If they meditate they will see the pressure and will be able to step away from it. They will then gain control of their minds and will be able to act in rightful, moral ways even when the pressure is on. That’s the answer to curing greed in the rich. That’s why we are teaching meditation to people all around the world, including the wealthy elite.