Spiritual Questions and Answers with Radhanath Swami

Isn’t it true that only the rich can afford religion? Radhanath Swami…

By on September 15, 2010 in Insights with 34 Comments

man-prayingQuestion to Radhanath Swami: Isn’t it true that only the rich can afford religion?

Radhanath Swami: I remember, when I was child there was a song I listened to. It’s called “All my trials Lord, will soon be over.” One stanza in this song said, “If religion is that a thing that money could buy, the rich would live and the poor would die.”

Religion is not for the rich or for the poor. Religion is for the sincere. And whatever situation we are in, we could make the best of it. I had a close friend,  Bhakti Tirtha Swami Maharaj. He was born in a violent, poverty stricken ghetto of America. He was from the minority, an African American who was suppressed and depressed. His father left before he was born and his widowed mother had to raise him and the other children. He never had more than a few pieces of clothes to wear. But yet, whenever a friend of his came to his house, and the friend’s clothes were torn or too old, his mother would give her own son’s clothes to that friend. She wanted to teach him the virtue of compassion; she was a God conscious woman. Making sacrifices for the welfare of others, to help others, and to show compassion—that is real wealth. A poverty stricken person with a sincere, honest and compassionate heart has billions of times more wealth than a billionaire who is greedy and egoistic.  Real wealth is internal.

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