“Don’t be too much concerned about money, because that is the greatest distraction against happiness. And the irony of ironies is that people think they will be happy when they have money. Money has nothing to do with happiness. If you are happy and you have money, you can use it for happiness.
“If you are unhappy and you have money, you will use that money for more unhappiness. Because money is simply a neutral force.
“I am not against money – remember. Don’t misinterpret me: I am not against money. I am not against anything. Money is a means. If you are happy and you have money, you will become more happy. If you are unhappy and you have money, you will become more unhappy because what will you do with your money? Your money will enhance your pattern, whatsoever it is. If you are miserable and you have power, what will you do with your power? You will poison yourself more with your power, you will become more miserable.
“But people go on looking for money as if money is going to bring happiness. People go on looking for respectability as if respectability is going to give you happiness. People are ready, at any moment, to change their pattern, to change their ways, if more money is available somewhere else.[…]
“Once the money is there, then suddenly you are no longer yourself; you are ready to change.
“This is the way of the worldly man. I don’t call those people worldly who have money, I call those people worldly who change their motives for money. I don’t call those people unworldly who have no money – they may be simply poor. I call those people unworldly who don’t change their motives for money. Just being poor is not equivalent to being spiritual; and just being rich is not equivalent to being a materialist. The materialistic pattern of life is one in which money predominates over everything.
“The non-materialistic life is one in which money is just a means: happiness predominates, joy predominates, your own individuality predominates. You know who you are and where you are going, and you are not distracted.
“Then suddenly you will see your life has a meditative quality to it.
“But somewhere along the way everybody has missed. You were brought up by people who have not arrived. You were brought up by people who were unhealthy themselves. Feel sorry for them. I am not saying be against them; I am not condemning them – remember. Just feel compassion for them. The parents, the schoolteachers, the university professors, the so-called leaders of society – they were unhappy people. They have created an unhappy pattern in you.
“And you have not yet taken charge of your life. They were living under a misinterpretation – that was their misery. And you are also living under a misinterpretation.”
Abridged from Osho, A Sudden Clash of Thunder, Talk #7