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Definition of Wealth

Updated on June 9, 2019
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Jack is retired. Before retiring, he worked at IBM for over 28 years. His articles have over 120,000 views.


Wealth and being rich is usually associated with money. How much money one makes and accumulates and also assets including house, cars, stuff...usually determines how wealthy a person is. On another level, wealth in spirit is another story.

- June 2019


According to a recent article that appeared in the US News and World Report, a person is considered wealthy if they have $2.3 million in personal net worth. As pointed out in the article, it depends on where one lives and how they live.

Money is not the only metrics for wealth. It also depends on what you value. Some put more value in their family, or their health or their spirit. As we all know, money cannot buy happiness. A happy person is considered wealthy compared to a miser who accumulated lots of money but live a miserable life. This was the them of that classic movie “It’s a Wonderful Life.” George Bailey was “rich” because he had a loving family and a community of friends. He made a difference in the lives of others.

Perhaps, we should expand the definition of wealth to include other factors.

Financial Wealth

It is not how much you make but how much you save. This is an old maxim and still true today. You can make a million but if you spend 2 million, then you are cash poor.

The net worth is calculated based on assets minus liabilities. Your net worth is how much you have in the bank and in real assets that can be liquidated for cash. It is also tied to taxes. The assets you own are subject to taxation and therefore it is not as high as you perceive.

Investment is also a part of the equation. This is because of inflation. Your assets sitting in a bank will depreciate over time. You need to invest wisely to keep up with inflation or even surpass it. That is one way to preserve or increase your wealth.

Physical Wealth

Your health and well being is most important. Without that, any money in the bank means very little. Money is only a token. What you can do with it is what brings happiness. If you are physically handicapped, you cannot take full advantage of your assets.

Physical health requires proper diet and exercise and not abusing your body with chemicals and drugs.

Spiritual Wealth

The bible speaks of “the love of money is the root of all evil...” How true. We all need to be spiritually engaged in order to be “wealthy” in the eye of God. This does not mean going to church every Sunday or reading the bible daily...

Having a healthy spiritual life includes recognizing that we are part of something much bigger than ourselves. Our world is our family and friends and neighbors and colleagues. Our world also includes the animals and the plants that are part of nature. They are all God’s creation and are here for us so that we may have dominion over them. The resources at our disposal are for us to use but not waste or abuse.

Helping others in need, and serving is also part of being a spiritual being. Thinking of others first is not in our nature. We are born selfish. How we choose to live our lives and giving and helping others makes us a whole spiritual being.


On a practical level, what is a person of wealth? What conduct or behavior does he exhibits?

  • mobility - a person of wealth can go where he wants and when he wants.
  • Independence - a person of wealth can do things on his own. He is not reliant of others.
  • Free will - a person of wealth has free will and can choose to do what he wants.
  • reputation - a person of wealth has a good reputation. He is known to others as being a “good” and kind and generous person. He is respected by his peers.
  • Defender of the weak - one is wealthy for acting to defend the weak and defenseless among us.
  • Speaking his mind - a person of wealth will speak his mind without being silenced.
  • Getting results - a person of wealth acts to deliver results and affect change for the better.
  • Share - A person shares his knowledge and his bounty with others less fortunate.


A wealthy person is much more than money in the bank. It is a state of mind and a lifestyle that will appeal to others. People respect you and want to imitate your actions and follow in your footsteps. Wealth is to be celebrated and admired.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Jack Lee


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