Joseph Campbell Money Talk

What would our attitudes around money look like today if Joseph Campbell had been a money coach instead of famous mythologist?


 (One of his famous quotes is:” Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls.)

My personal favorite Joseph Campbell quote is:

“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.”

Sometimes the cave opening that we fear to enter is decorated with a yellow DO NOT ENTER tape,

and in parenthesis it states: “Spiritual people don’t care about worldly treasures” or “My mom always says rich people are greedy and I want my mom to love me.”


Is it spiritual to have money?


If it is in our hearts to help the humanity, without funds we can only help a very limited amount of people as it would require our presence to make an impact. (Or a prayer, of course!) But with enough funds, we could easily end hunger. We could also give out micro loans to help women in developing economies to start their own businesses, or we can simply buy school supplies and hot meals to aid in the fight for literacy and education for all.

So even if we feel that talking about money, or owning it might not be spiritual, would we agree that by giving to worthy causes can make us feel a bit more alive? – And according to my hero Joseph Campbell the meaning of life is to feel fully alive, to fire on all cylinders, to experience life with intensity? – As giving is the same as receiving, isn’t giving the first step toward happiness?

Is money neutral energy?

If money is not good or bad, but an energy flow, why isn’t it flowing equally to everyone?

Was the first idea about money that you heard as a child “Money doesn’t grow on the trees” or

“Rich people aren’t going to heaven”?


Could it be that your young subconscious mind was seared with these misconceptions and somehow they still shape your financial decisions, in subconscious level at least?


What if we were equipped with bad money misconceptions for our journey through life? Unfortunately they stick! So, if our money energy doesn’t flow like we wish it would, or if we feel guilty that we have more than others, perhaps we need to take another look at our childhood!


If we agree that this life is a Hero’s Journey, the first thing to do about money misconceptions is to realize that in the beginning of our Journey we were given a  GPS by our parents . They did the best they could but sometimes our parents are not the greatest money-handlers, either! So our GPS could be flawed! With poor directions we will circle the money issues and make the same mistakes over and over again!  It can be scary to drop the flawed programming that was given to us by our most trusted caregiver, and to start changing the way we feel around money, and to move into trusting our own inner guidance….. yet it is necessary to do so if we want to grow in our stewardship.


What can be done to change for better?

The two most common stumbling blocks for abundance and prosperity are:

"I am too spiritual to admit that I would like to have more money flowing through me"


"If I ask for help, there will be with some strings attached and I will be asked to do something I am not comfortable with. "

When at Holistic Healing Fairs the guests saw my “Free Financial Advice” sign, they didn’t know what to think! “A dog must be buried there somewhere” is an old Finnish saying about this situation. If we subscribe to the thought that Money is Hard, Rich people are greedy and You have to work really hard to have enough, then Free Advice seems like some utopian concept ..or a trick to reel us into something we don’t want to hear about/learn about/ act upon!

Further, we have been conditioned to believe that only the analytical left-brain decisions are correct and will keep us from money trouble. Yet it is the same with money as it is with EVERYTHING in life:

We need Balance. We need to get out of our duality thinking into unity and oneness. The left brain can get us only so far and only in the third dimention. It can solve the problem of finding enough income to pay the mortgage or making the ends meet; or how to frame our understanding of  prosperity and good fortune when others have none, BUT we need to engage the right side of our brain to bring back intuition, creativity and understanding of patterns and nuances.

Do you hate your job?

Another good quote by Joseph Campbell is

“I think the person who takes a job in order to live - that is to say, for the money [not for purpose or passion]- has turned himself into a slave.”

Are we following our bliss? Do I get paid by doing what I love to do? If not, would I consider myself a slave?

So how do I become a free person?

First we release the need to survive. Second, we release the fear of not making it unless we work this crappy job I have landed. If I try to remember why I came to this planet, hopefully the answer is not to merely survive, but to experience being alive. Does working 9-5 make me feel alive? Do I get to use the gifts and talents I have in my daily work routine? - If not, we need to stop and start to dream of financial independence and what we would really like to do:

-        What were you doing last time you felt utterly happy?

Most financially successful people tell us that their job does not feel like a job. They wake up every morning, excited to fulfill their life’s purpose.

What makes you feel happy and special? When was the last time you did something and felt like you were at the right place at the right time? The day flowed and you were part of that good flow?

Even if there is a danger of this column becoming a Joseph Campbell shrine, I take that chance!

Here is the next quote:

“When we quit thinking primarily about ourselves and our own self-preservation, we undergo a truly heroic transformation of consciousness.”

Our life is a Hero’s Journey. Caring about our own and our family’s needs are important, but once we capture a more universal point of view, we will be in contact with the energy that is far more powerful than what we have ever experienced.

DO you think that when you want to feed the poor it would cause you not to have food in your own cupboards?  Or when you buy clothes for the kids who don’t have the sneakers or the latest jeans, you would yourself go without? There is power in generosity!

It’s time to move from scarcity mentality to an attitude of abundance and gratitude!

Perhaps this power will make you more creative and you find brand new ways to make more money, or perhaps you wake up and realize that last year’s fashion is just fine for now and you stop thriving to have things, and you fill your life with experiences that satisfy. What if this holiday season you go and make care packs for homeless, or serve at the soup kitchen?

And finally:

So what can we do to get closer to thriving in what we do and to being prosperous in all aspects of our lives?

Again, Mr. Campbell has a suggestion:

“You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen.

What stands between our dream life and what we are dealing with now is fear. To conquer that sinking feeling, we don’t try to conquer it at all. Instead, we sit with it. We close a door, we go inside and we observe all the thoughts that run the track of our minds a mile a second, borrows our attention until we get the next thought and the next. When we take the time and sit and observe, we just might have flashes of our own genius. We can emerge from our meditation mind full of great ideas that can be changed into prosperity.

So how can you feel prosperous and abundant at all times?

The inner world is the world of your requirements and your energies and your structure and your possibilities that meets the outer world. And the outer world is the field of your incarnation. That’s where you are. You’ve got to keep both going. As Novalis said, 'The seat of the soul is there where the inner and outer worlds meet.”

That is also where you will find your true prosperity.