New Age Economics – Introduction
New Age economics is shaped by the need for a world system of self-government. In this light, some Cosmic Humanists call for a universal system of exchange. Vera Alder describes the monetary system of the future: “As...individual needs would largely be supplied on the ration-card system, the need for handling of money would dwindle. There would, of course, be a universal currency the world over. There would be a central bank.”1
Because of their belief in individual autonomy, Cosmic Humanists do not discuss specifics of a world economic system just as they avoid concrete political declarations or definitive legal systems. Marilyn Ferguson believes, “Both capitalism and socialism, as we know them, pivot on material values. They are inadequate philosophies for a transformed society.”2 Marianne Williamson adds, “Like everything else, money is either holy or unholy, depending on the purposes ascribed to it by the mind. We tend to do with money what we do with sex: we desire it but we judge the desire. It is the judgment that then distorts the desire, turning it into an ugly expression.”3
New Age Economics – Universal Enlightened Production
According to New Age economics, all concern with the marketplace will be moot in the coming transformed New Age. People of the future will not be concerned with choosing vocations that will meet their needs or those of their neighbors. Rather, people will choose vocations in accordance with their inner voice, the voice of God. Coupled with a reliance on our inner voice is the belief that positive thought creates wealth, often called universal enlightened production.
New Age Economics – Higher Consciousness = Higher Income
The core of New Age economics is the belief that if we all allow our inner voice to lead us, no one in society will want for anything. Shakti Gawain says, “We make a contribution to the world just by being ourselves in every moment. There are no more rigid categories in our lives—this is work, this is play. It all blends into the flow of following the universe and money flows in as a result of the open channel that’s created. You no longer work in order to make money. Work is no longer something you have to do in order to sustain life. Instead, the delight that comes from expressing yourself becomes the greatest reward.4 Gawain also says, “The more you are willing to trust yourself, and take the risks to follow your inner guidance, the more money you will have. The universe will pay you to be yourself and do what you really love!”5
Randall Baer concurs with Gawain on the results of positive thinking. In New Age success philosophy, “the more attuned a person is to the ‘Universal Mind’ the more the universe will demonstrate this level of enlightenment by mirroring more ‘god-money in action.’ The more enlightened a person is, the more money and success will naturally occur in life.”6
To Cosmic Humanists, God wants us to prosper materially, and by getting in touch with our higher consciousness, we are able to ensure ourselves a high income. Williamson believes that if we want something and focus on it, we will probably attain it. But God may want us to have something even better, so our focus should be more on attaining higher consciousness than on material blessings. Williamson believes that we can trust the world to grant us material blessings because we, as part of God, ultimately control reality. She believes that “[o]ur purpose on this earth is to be happy.”7 In a similar vein, Kevin Ryerson says, “God does not work for you; God works through you.”8
New Age Economics – Conclusion
The New Age tends not to be concerned with economic theory because economic systems are only applicable in unenlightened societies. When people achieve higher consciousness, the God within will lead them to make wise economic decisions, and economic systems will cease being necessary.
People who are led by their higher consciousness will achieve material success and need not be concerned about the success or failure of particular economic systems. Poverty will thus gradually disappear as more and more people are led by the God within.
Since human nature is basically good, we can solve our economic dilemmas as we get in touch with our goodness. Cosmic Humanists believe Christians are wrong to believe that we have a sinful nature. According to Shirley MacLaine, greed, envy, slander, theft, covetousness, etc., are only “a manifestation of the need for human love”9
According to New Age economics, greed and poverty will cease to exist. People will work together harmoniously to increase and share wealth. Williamson says that “God does not require sacrifice.”10 Rather, the God within wants to bless us with happiness and material success.