This is perhaps one of the most complex of all subjects, if not the most complex, and because it is complex it has so many sides. I will reduce it to the most simple example I can think of, and I will use myself as a example in my imagination. I will take the example of where a young man is born into wealth. We used to call that being born with a silver spoon in your mouth.
If I was such a person my upbringing would have been privileged, and I would have attended a rich parents school, and I would have come to expect everyone to do things my way. I would earn a living running the family business, or part of it, and of course I would have the finest of everything at my fingertips.
The danger to me is that should I grow bored and delve into drugs and the underworld, I would have the resources to drive myself straight to hell in a hurry. However, apart from the drug of alcohol, I have never engaged in the use of any other form of drugs.
If I choose to stay on the straight and narrow and to maintain control in my life, I could do a lot of good with my wealth. The question is, what would I consider to consitute personal happiness? If I am a member of the rich class, I suppose I would look for a young lady of the same class to be my wife. If I could find someone ideal, and it worked, than I would have the best of all possible worlds. There are, I'm sure happy marriages between wealthy individuals, but the temptations to stray from normal behaviour must be overwhelming when you can afford whatever you want.
I think that the answer to the question must be that money, per se, cannot buy happiness, but it can buy a lot of accessories to happiness. True personal happiness is a hit or miss thing, and the rich man, or woman is as much at the mercy of the gods when pursuing their own brass ring as the common man. There can be so much more to lose when things go wrong, although relatively speaking, it can seem like the same thing to both a rich person, or a poor one.
Copyright (c) 2012 Eugene Carmichael