Probably all of us would ideally like to avoid poverty with all the hardships it brings. And having the aspiration of being comfortably well off seems reasonable. Enough income to get by on without the worry of debt. Extra to this and we can enjoy a foreign holiday or a spanking new car. But such pleasures don’t last. The idea that any more money than is needed for life’s necessities can create a deep sense of happiness is surely a delusion.
Yet we see huge differences in wealth between the rich and the poor. The differences can be staggering.
So it was delightful to read about one of the world’s richest people deciding to give his entire £21bn – yes billion not million – to good causes. in the next few years. We might think doing something like this would indeed take quite a while such is the huge fortune involved.
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal – the 60-year old nephew of the late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is the man who announced last week that the money would be used to improve health care, empower women, boost intercultural understanding and fight disease. Philanthropy, he explained, is an ‘intrinsic part of my Islamic faith’.