The Richest Man in Babylon #2

by | Jan 22, 2020 | WWC WorthWhile Reading

“Budget thy expenses that thou mayest have coins to pay for thy necessities, to pay for thy enjoyments and to gratify thy worthwhile desires without spending more than nine-tenths of thy earnings.”

This quote from The Richest Man in Babylon sums up the first two laws of money that we learned in last week’s blog.

  • Start thy purse to fattening and
  • Control thy expenditures

Living by these two principles, allows you then to SAVE one-tenth!  And as your savings grow, you will be impressed with the fattening of your purse!  Once you have learned to save, and it is a habit, you will be inspired to stick with your budget and keep saving.  Now, you are set up to learn law #3, Make thy gold multiply.

Arkad taught his class that putting each coin you save to work will allow your money to grow faster than saving alone.  He was teaching them about interest – each coin will produce more coins, and those coins will produce more.  Therefore, money will work and grow for the one who will save it.  This also would be the principle of investing which for many of us would be a 401k or investments of some kind.  If you are someone who has invested over a period of years, you have seen dollars grow into hundreds and then thousands of dollars.

Think of your savings as a “money tree”.  You plant the seed of savings, water it with more savings and eventually the seed turns into a tree with lots of money leaves.  You could even take a leaf off the tree, if needed, without affecting its continued growth.  A great example of the planting of a money tree comes from Benjamin Franklin.

When he died in 1790, he willed the cities of Boston and Philadelphia $4,400 each, but with the stipulation that the money could not be spent for 200 years.  The money was in trusts that were to be used to the benefit of budding tradesmen and trade schools.  Upon the 200-year anniversary, the remaining funds were released in whole to the city treasuries.  By 1990, Boston’s trust was worth $5 million and Philadelphia’s trust $2 million.  Wow!  What a money tree Ben Franklin planted!  This is a great forward-thinking idea for grandparents and parents to think about for their heirs.

As Arkad told his students, “put each coin to laboring that it may reproduce its kind . . . and help bring to thee income, a stream that shall flow constantly into thy purse.”

Have a great weekend!


Clason, G. S. (1926). The Richest Man in Babylon. New York, NY: New American Library.