The brilliance of idea 💡

11 March, 2020 - 2 min read

The idea of money.

On it's own, it has no intrinsic value since it appears as a strip of paper or metal with markings. The materials aren't that precious or expensive either.

That being said, one might wonder why on earth most humans dedicate their life to the pursuit of money. It seems counterintuitive but the answer is simple.


Despite all the diversity around the world, from people to places to languages to races to you name it...everyone agrees on the ideology of money. Not what it is but what it represents.

Physically, money is worthless but ideologically it is priceless. It serves as an instrument of exchange and its true value is in its purchasing power.

Fundamentally money is based on two principles:

  • Universal convertibility: with money as an alchemist you can turn things into other things
  • Universal trust: with money as a go-between, any two people can cooperate

In his book, A Brief History of Humankind, Dr Yuval Noah Harari writes:

The raw material for money is trust... Money is accordinly a system of mutual trust and not just any system of mutual trust: money is the most universal and most efficient system of mutual trust ever devised.

Seth Godin also proposes something similar in saying that "the way to win is to get your ideas to spread".

Believe is also a powerful phenomena. If you believe in something and you get your neighbour to believe in the same thing and they in turn get their friends to believe too, then you can take advantage of collective imagination and create an inter-subjective belief to get your idea to succeed.

  • business
  • psychology
  • philosophy