Kanye West, one of my favorite artists of all time (no matter how eccentric), has reemerged in the world of hip hop music, and he’s returned a mid controversy of his alleged ties to the Illuminati after debuting a video for his tracked titled, “Power.” The video depicts a compelling West standing still in the center of a moving painting as he chimes, “No one man should have all that power” over a thumping beat with harmony lulling in the background. For years, people have speculated the Illuminati, an age-old secret society, have plans to take over the world as we know it or secretly run ish already. Now I love him to death, so forgive me here….but Kanye, a member of the Illuminati? I just don’t see it no matter how many symbols the public points to. I mean, this is the same guy who said President George Bush didn’t like Blacks during a telethon following Hurricane Katrina, and the same guy who threw tantrums ‘cause he ain’t win an MTV award, and the same guy who, later, interrupted Taylor Swift’s acceptance for an MTV award to make his own public service announcement on how undeserving she was and claimed the award should’ve gone to Hov’s wifey Beyonce instead. Unless the research I pored over is wrong, the Illuminati claim to have spiritual enlightenment, but who am I to judge? Love you, Kanye!
Moving right along, class is in session. Today’s lesson is on nothing other than power. Kanye’s track ends with the lyric, “You got the power to let power go.” Deep, huh? Just let that marinate. Ordinarily, some of us walk around complaining to be powerless and wanting the world to change instead of letting go and sharing what we do have to create a Different World. In Start Over, Finish Rich, David Bach dedicated the final chapter to finding your power and the importance of lending it to others who are less fortunate. The best-selling author and personal finance expert quotes Sir John Templeton (b. 1912 - d. 2008) who once said, “The secret of life is to become a ‘go giver’ – not a ‘go getter.’” That goes hard, right? Now I know you’re probably thinking that we’ve just recovered from a recession, and you ain’t got much doe to give. Well, maybe you do and maybe you don’t, but giving back doesn’t always mean trickin’ your money to charity (which is a worthy cause by the way). As Russell Simmons' book title says, Do You! the best way you can.
For sometime now, my friendgirl Staci of My Journey to Better has grumbled about the poor economic conditions of Edgecombe County in Rocky Mount, N.C. She’s also mentioned how the neighboring county, Nash, is thriving, which brought Haiti and the Dominican Republic to mind. Every time she’s mentioned it I’ve asked, “What are you going to do about it?” The first time I asked her, she seemed stunned as if to say, “No, she didn’t!” This last time, she sat quietly and pondered on what and how she could do something, anything. Much too often, we immediately discount
ourselves as being unfitting to tackle an issue or not having the means necessary to make it happen, but that’s not what power and giving back are about. When Miss Qui Vive approached me about this blog venture, I thought, “Yeah, I have ideas. But really, who is going to listen?” Some 2,000 hits later, I’m still hangin’ in there. I'm glad I agreed to do it because I pushed pass something hindering me from within myself, and I've been able to get you to think about money (maybe in a way you never had).
About a week or so after choppin’ it up with my friendgirl Staci, she came to me again and spoke of a dream – a vision. She had become inspired by her burden and contacted a local city council member in Rocky Mount, N.C. for some REAL talk on improving the city’s conditions. Instead of sitting by idly, she found her power and in it, her purpose. She sought to organize a health and wellness fair with vendors from across the state contributing services to the public at no charge in hopes of awakening the city and whipping its’ people into shape. Motivated by her power to improve the lives of others, she also asked for yours truly to participate, as a financial literacy advocate, among the support of many other young strivers and entrepreneurs. And she’s already scheming ideas to empower the city’s youth with the first-ever Teen Summit.
Speaking from personal experience, I know using my power for the greater good has been a humbling and rewarding one. Not only do I help someone else, but I feel better about myself in the process. I get what some call the "Helper's High" and look past whatever dilemmas I am facing by focusing all of my attention on doing good for others. Research has shown that we feel a sense of euphoria after acts of kindness, and our brains have a response similar to its' reaction to chemicals like dopamine. So get high by getting your give on!
In case you didn’t quite get it, lesson #4 for young strivers is:
Tap into your power and shine your light on others through giving whatever you have to offer
(i.e. dinero, time, etc.) no matter how much or little it is.
Questions to Think About:
- Are you a “go giver” or a “go getter?”
- Do you know where your power lies? And your purpose?
- How do you use your power to better the world?
- What's your take on Mr. West's video? If you haven't seen it, watch for yourself below.