Believe in Yourself – the Era of the Financial Guru is Dead

by | Jan 10, 2001 | Archives

I hesitated to disagree with the Dalai Llama, until I realized our wealth can be better in this era where the Guru is dead.

Last message I passed on 18 tips for a better life from the Dalai Llama. One tip did not ring true to me. This posed three points, the first being whether or not this really originates from him. So many things come to us via the net that it is hard to verify them all. As the world moves faster credibility becomes increasingly important. Keep this in mind in your business and as you invest. Anything that lacks credibility is diluted as was this message, when I had doubts of its true source.

The second point is that I don't understand the 18th tip: “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”

This advice does not make sense to me (which caused me to question its source) as it seems based on an outdated paradigm of “no pain no gain”. This is an old technique of forcing, pushing and making things work regardless of the sacrifice. The ends justify the means.

We have evolved beyond this. We know in exercise that if we work to the point of near strain but go no further-we'll get better results (with less risk). We know that pain is nature's way of telling us we are in the wrong place.

If we are in our right place there is no sacrifice. Our service is pleasure, not pain. A truer tip seems to me that we should judge our success by the satisfaction we receive in the process of serving.

This brought me to the third point, who am I to question this great man, the Dalai Llama? Then a fact came to me about the era of the guru and how it is dead. As mankind advanced through seven industrial eras, we also moved through three social eras. The first era was the era of the church. During this time, the church stood between mankind and God. The way to heaven was only through the Church. If one sinned, the Church could intervene and absolve the mistake. If Church dictates were followed, heaven was guaranteed.

This was also the era of the banker. He too stood between the investor and the investment. The church had all the knowledge-the bankers had all the knowledge.

Then as we evolved and gained access to more knowledge we shifted to the era of the guru. Those who followed a guru's advice could be put directly in touch with God. Heaven on earth was promised. But each soul had to take more responsibility as well. Each had to follow the guru's path and if he erred, he could not rely on the guru to absolve him of any bad karma gained. Each had to suffer the burden of their mistakes.

This was also the era of the mutual fund guru. Instead of investing in banks for a guaranteed return investors followed the mutual fund guru directly into shares. Greater responsibility for this type investing brought greater financial reward. Investors and those seeking enlightenment knew more, but the guru was still the master.

Today technology lets us know it all. We have the same access to data as the guru. Masters they should be no more. Mentors, directors, guiding lights perhaps, but not the unequivocal source of all knowledge.

This is our goal at the Eclub, to be a credible source of information and contacts to help you come to your own investing conclusions. A sounding board, yes. Stimulator of ideas, we hope. The final word – hopefully never.

I read a interview of the founder of Hotmail, who after selling out for hundreds of millions still lived in a modest one bedroom apartment. He is a Hindu and when asked in the interview what that meant, he said “to set your own standards and then live by them”.

This is the key to never ending wealth. Set your own financial and service standards. You will never be happy with your financial affairs until you do. If others dictate how you earn and spend no amount of money can be enough. There is always more to spend on than you'll have. Only when you set goals true to yourself and stick with them can you be at ease with your material lot.

Ease is nature's blessing when we are where we should be. Perhaps the ease we feel in the way we serve should be how we measure our success.

Until next message good global investing.

Gary Scott