Sunday 27 January 2008

If you had one...

You know the type of question - if you had one book when marooned on an island..., if you had one person to invite to dinner..., and so on and so on.

So here's another one: if you had one advice to give, what would it be?

Just one; the gateway to all the rest, the one to suffice for life.

Feel free to correct me, but try as I might I always end up with this:

Everything has a cost.

It's not even original ("there's no such thing as a free lunch" comes to mind and many other variations on the theme). Still, no matter how trivial it may seem at first it is only a matter of time before one gets into deep waters.

Let's dispense with spending money on something - no great mystery there.

How about the reverse - you win the lottery, big time. Consider the situation in detail and the costs will become apparent. The sudden "friends" who knock on your door, the bank managers with their glossy brochures waiting for your signature, all those possibilities keeping you awake at night... no cost?

Or you received a gift. You would be kidding yourself if you think there are no obligations whatsoever, however subtly their presence would make itself felt at some point in time.

'Free' energy? To construct a device, any device, requires planning, organisation, and execution; all of which draw on resources of a manifold nature, from finances to politics to infrastructure which now must be maintained in their own right.

The dream of a perpetual motion engine has largely been put to rest. Yet when it comes to initiatives of a more abstract nature the phantasy still lingers. Even if reality has set in, the tendency exists to restrict one's intellectual scope to the barest necessities. Yet continue the musings and not before long there are aspects which appear less and less comfortable.

Persist and you might well come to ask yourself, why bother? But that too has its price.

As I said...

1 comment:

TJ said...

Very true.

But, despite this truth being widely understood people still have dreams and desires. People still have goals and go on to succeed in whatever area matters to them.

That they pay a price for this is well understood - but what matters is that people have the choice in the first place.

It is often pointed out that people in liberal democracies today are not as "happy" as they would have been in the past.

This is due to many things: the stress of modern life, the constant drive to work harder and earn more and buy more.

But remember that people still have a choice to become wealthy and prosperous.

They simply didn't have that choice say, 300 years ago.

So yes, things cost. But being able to decide to make the transaction is priceless.