Prosperous and Happy


Recent studies show that people living in prosperous countries are not any happier than those living in poor countries. According to a survey done with a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being unsatisfied with life and 7 being completely satisfied), 400 of the richest Americans average 5.8. That’s the same average that Inuits living in Greenland and cattle herders in Kenya scored (Wall Street Journal, August 13). Psychologists are finding out that although economic output continues to rise in the West, satisfaction in life is staying the same. Why this paradox?

One psychologist attributes the low satisfaction in life to materialism. Though people who have virtually nothing can still be happy, those who have plenty seem to always want more. “Luxuries come to seem like necessities, canceling the psychological benefits of economic growth” (ibid.).

In his booklet The Seven Laws of Success, Herbert W. Armstrong wrote that “happiness is not material, and money is not its source.” Happiness is a state of mind, he taught—which explains why people with very little can still be very happy. It’s a mindset that puts God and His laws above all else. And the beauty of it is, when man sets that as his top priority, material prosperity—though not lustful desires—will soon follow. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33).

For more information on the keys to abundant and successful living, request The Seven Laws of Success.