Can Money Really Buy Happiness?


Is Money ‘The Root Of All Evil’- Or ‘The Blessing In Disguise?’ Photo from Ministry Matters.

It’s not unknown that we live in a society that values and prioritizes money and wealth. Growing up as children we are taught the value of money through our schools and families, and most adults would tell us “money cannot buy happiness” to make us not become materialistic.  However, is it possible that this statement is incorrect? In this article, I will analyze both sides of the argument based on if money can really give you happiness, or just temporarily ward the feeling of sadness away.


Let’s begin with the claim that money CAN buy happiness; the main reason would be because of what money can do for a person. If you look at money from a materialistic point of view or from a positive light, more or less money can give you the things that you want that will give you the happiness you need. Money itself can’t provide an emotion, but its value and what you can use that value for is the prime reason we see money as a good thing. 


Now if you still don’t understand what money’s benefit is, think of using it for good in the world. For example, by having a lot of money, you can donate to people in need that can use the money for necessities they may not be able to afford. By donating to local food banks and charities for medical research, you are providing the world with comfortable security that will do much good for others. However, let’s take it one step further. Say your aunt was diagnosed with a deadly illness and she needs to pay for the treatment that would guarantee her life. If you were given the money and could pay for her treatment, you could save her. By doing so, you are keeping your aunt alive and trading the value of money for the value of time with a loved one. That time you spend with your aunt can bring great joy and happiness to you, something that your money is partially responsible for. 


But moving into the debate AGAINST money buying happiness, others can say that it does more harm than good. Yes, money can buy you a fancy car and a new pair of shoes that will make you happy, but one day that happiness will go away. The shoes will wear down, the car will shut off and your money will no longer be giving you that happiness. Money is only responsible for the materialistic satisfaction that you gain by using it for your own reasons, but deep down it can never make you happy based on emotions alone. At the beginning of the article, I stated that our families teach us not to prioritize possessions gained from money. But at the end of the day, a lot of us will do that no matter what. Money tends to be the interest of everyone in the world because of our economy and because of the luxuries it can give us. 


Some people enjoy having money to spend on expensive things that they don’t need. This usually comes from individuals seeing their favorite celebrities wearing or using an item. If a celebrity endorses a product, the fan will buy it regardless of needing it or not. By doing so people start to grow jealous of the possessions they see these wealthy people owning on TV, and start to become obsessed with materialistic items that will only give them happiness because they feel like they’re that celebrity living that life. This effect is the reason that families like the Kardashians have so much fame and fortune. They started out semi-wealthy, but by showing off their bags and their homes, people began to want the life they had. This caused the family to start creating their own products and endorsing the lavish lifestyle that people could have if they bought these products. 


Both claims against money buying happiness are valid and fair points. However, there is no right or wrong answer. It’s all based on how you view each situation. Money can be a wonderful thing for one person, but for someone else, it can be a horrible thing. Money can be seen as a blessing or a curse, but it’s all about how you choose to value and prioritize it in your life.