Scarcity: The Great Lie

Our small community is humming these days with a major news story as one of our prominent attorneys has been disbarred for misappropriating funds that he was entrusted to disburse to two non-profits when one of his clients passed away, alleged to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollar.

As I read the news report on the incidence, I was left wondering what would possess a prominent, well respected citizen to make such an egregious mistake.  I then remembered what I’ve been reading in Lynne Twist’s book, The Soul of Money, including the 3 toxic myths that keep us living in a world of scarcity rather than in a world of sufficiency.

This prominent attorney is just one of the many victims of these toxic myths. In fact, I would say we all are affected at one level or another by them, so I want to explore these with you.  I believe as we pull these from the background of our awareness to the foreground we’ll be better able to act more responsibly, on purpose and from a world of sufficiency.

Scarcity:  The Great Lie
No matter who we are or what our circumstances, we swim in conversations about what isn’t enough of.” Lynne Twist in The Soul
of Money

In my book, Life On Purpose: Six Passages to an Inspired Life, I write about the Sea of Meaning in which we swim.  It goes like this:  People are born into and live in a “Sea of Meaning,” which has as much impact on our lives as water does on the life of a fish—and is just as transparent and outside our awareness most of the time.

When we couple this with Lynne’s quote, we begin to reveal that a tremendous amount of the Sea of Meaning is based in the great lie of scarcity.  Not surprisingly then the first toxic myth that keeps us locked into this great lie is:

“There’s not enough.”

There’s not enough time, not enough money, not enough of myself to go around, etc.  Once you begin really listening with the intention to uncover this toxic myth you hear it everywhere:

“I just can’t get ahead.”

“No matter how much I try, there’s always more month than money.”

“I’m just so busy. I’m working harder than ever and enjoying it less.”

As Lynne points out in The Soul of Money, it’s like a huge, global game of musical chairs. “With one seat short of the number of people playing, your focus is on not losing and not being the one who ends up and the end of the scramble without a seat.”

It’s clear to me that our illustrious attorney that I opened this article with was operating from this lie, and he was very clear he wasn’t going to be the one without a seat when the music stopped.

The myth of “there’s not enough” shapes how we live our lives at the individual level, as well as at the community and global level.  In this country it’s even led to a escalating problem of ‘hoarding’ where a growing number of people end up accumulating so much stuff that they can hardly walk through their house because of the massive amount of clutter.

But the lie of scarcity is driven by more than just this one myth.  In my next article, I’ll explore toxic myth #2 — “More is better.”

PS If you don’t want to wait and want to continue exploring this timely topic, join me as I continue reading and studying The Soul of Money on the Life On Purpose Facebook page ( ).