Showing posts with label debt. Show all posts
Showing posts with label debt. Show all posts

My brother has not been himself lately. Owing to extremely huge debt, he has been distressed and avoided meeting people ever since. There is not a single day going by without his engulfment in terrible fear. He is endlessly disturbed by the imagination of lenders' sudden visit who have given him some loan in the past. 

The debt has inevitably caused his life miserable and put it in serious jeopardy. Not only does he risk losing his entire asset including the valuable house, but the marriage is threatened to break up. The substantial debt is really wreaking havoc on his life in its entirety.          

Debt either empowers or undermines you.

Abandon the importance of financial planning

For entrepreneurs, debt is actually normal as it adds to capital and helps business to expand. But my brother has seemed to be overestimating the profit he was going to gain without calculating the risk. A few friends of his came to assure him of profitable investment. He was taken into their persuasion and invested quite a lot of money.

However, he tended to ignore reason before making a decision and neglect the importance of financial planning. It was too good to be true that the business yielded instant profit significantly in the initial months. That was what he did not realize, the fact that he was plainly defrauded. 

Things get worse as the money he invested doesn't belong to him. It was other people's money he had used to invest. The borrowed capital has to be returned to those people despite the fact he was an object of investment scam. He may have received quick money for a few months but he soon learned the guaranteed returns are now fugazi.

This reminds me of a passage in "Serat Darmawasita" by KGPAA Mangkunegara IV that addresses specifically on financial obligations. Does the serat encourage owing money or simply disapprove indebtedness? The sixth stanza of the first part named "Dhandhanggula" puts it this way:     

lan malih wêkas ingsun | and  I have one more message

aja tuman utang lan silih | do not enjoy owing or borrowing money

The lines obviously describe that having debt is okay as long as that doesn't turn into a habit. It can be inferred from the sentences that one who enjoys borrowing money may as well make debt a matter of addiction. Without reason and precautions, one can be easily absentminded and hungry for more loans to cover the other. Once you are in the grip of a loan shark, your life foundation is probably beginning to collapse.

Why is borrowing habit considered bad and highlighted in the serat? When people borrow money to support the growth of their business, it is but a good habit as it is more productive. But when loan is made to sustain one's compulsive buying behavior, debt will likely:   

anyudakkên darajat | abase your dignity  

camah wêkasipun | humiliated ultimately 

kasoran prabawanira | your self esteem degraded

mring kang potang lawan kang sira silihi | by those who lend

nyatane angrêrêpa | giving you but self-pity 

When we are indebted, especially to many people in large sum of money, it is predictable that our life is soon morphing into an inferno. It has become common knowledge that debts breed humiliation during the day and misery during the night. Debtors will find themselves in constant chase by creditors in many ways.

While their debt accumulates, they are in grave danger of losing self esteem and pride. All they have in mind is how to manage to elude the pursuers at all cost. Without people touching him, he is already making a road to perdition by undermining life in its basic.

In terms of debt, Muhammad the messenger of God mentions in a hadith that all sins of those who die martyrs are forgiven except those with debt. This underlines the importance of dealing with debt wisely, as to know our financial condition without always getting into debt we will be unable to repay.

In brief, "Serat Darmawasita" doesn't forbid debt but encourages one to manage it carefully. A decision to be in debt should be made with serious calculations and debt should never be an option to become an addiction.