Definition number 1 of "poverty" in the American Heritage Dictionary is: "The state of being poor; lack of the means of providing material needs or comforts." It's further defined as "deficiency in amount; scantiness; unproductiveness; infertility."
By "poverty consciousness," I mean the set of attitudes and beliefs and feelings and values associated with material lack or fear of material lack. Poverty consciousness equals a belief in limitation, and almost always includes fear.
Poverty consciousness is not directly related to the amount of money you have. Rather, it's the relationship to that money or to material possessions. If you worry about not having enough money, you're in poverty consciousness. If you believe there is not enough for everyone in the world, you operate from poverty consciousness.
You can live in conditions of poverty without necessarily living in poverty consciousness, which is a state of mind and heart. The amount of money or other material possessions is a matter of fact. Your relationship to that amount is a matter of thoughts and feelings.
Different Means; Similar Consciousness
Years ago, I had two personal empowerment sessions back-to-back with individuals of strikingly different financial means. The first one asked me probing questions about decisions he wanted to make with respect to stocks and his upcoming retirement from a major corporation. The second, desperate to generate $35 to pay his part of the electric bill, asked me probing questions about his uncertain situation.
I worked with both men in essentially the same way. I looked at the energy field in and around their thoughts and feelings. I assessed how they were creating a reality of poverty consciousness energized by their fears. The one of greater financial means became calmer as he embraced a shift in consciousness. The one of lesser financial means became calmer as he embraced a shift in consciousness.
The dollar amounts were different. The fear was the same. Probably each would have envied aspects of the other's life! As each man understood more fully how he had thought and felt his way into his particular situation, he was better prepared to think and feel his way out.
Return to the American Heritage Dictionary, I see a fourth definition of poverty that warrants discussion: "Renunciation made by a member of a religious order of the right to own property."
Perhaps few readers of this article are presently in religious orders that require vows of poverty. However, the history of civilization is filled with such vows. For those of you who believe that it's possible to inherit traits from your ancestors, consider the impact of past vows of poverty passed through the genes and generations. For those of you who believe that it's possible to be influenced by beliefs of others, consider the impact of past vows of poverty modeled in behavior. For those of you who believe in past lives, consider the impact of past vows of poverty on future lives. For those of you who believe in the existence of an energy field, consider how it might be polluted by such vows of limitation.
You can probably find some part of your belief system that tells you that vows of poverty made in the past can impact you and others now. As Individuals, in groups, and as the whole of humanity, you're touched by others.
A Matter of Faith
Ending poverty consciousness is a matter of faith. Everyone has faith, even though there are many who claim they have none. The question is not whether or not you have faith, but rather, in what you place your faith. Do you place your faith in money? In yourself? In lack? In history? In the future? In the visible? In the invisible? In health? In sickness?
When the visible elements of your experience are tumbling, you must redirect your faith, your energy, and your intention. The physical world is a temporary reality, always changing. It's time to open your awareness more to the worlds beyond this one. Higher consciousness is becoming more available to the human plane. You'll want to stay alert so you don't miss this adventure!
This is an exciting time. The extraordinary dynamic and paradox is that at this time when the world has its most abundant riches, some still live in poverty and/or poverty consciousness. This universe is waiting to fulfill your every need.
This article has focused on poverty and poverty consciousness as related to material things. Keep in mind, though, that the same principles apply to other aspects of your life. Some persons feel poverty or poverty consciousness about themselves. "Low self esteem" is one of the popular terms, which is a belief in lack, lack of talents or abilities, not having enough of what's wanted.
A Few Ideas to End Poverty Consciousness
Now is the Time
Now is the only time you really have. You may believe that "as soon as ...... happens" you'll be free of poverty consciousness. You may dream that "when I win the lottery, I'll do all those things I want to do." The truth is, you don't need to wait for any conditions to change in order to be conscious of abundance. Now is the time. Here is the place.