What is money to an introvert?
For those in the main stream of society it defines every aspect of life.
For those who look inwards for meaning and exist outside of the larger society, it is just one part of life.
Money is a physical manifestation of social force, it is the lifeblood of society. A wad of cash is a solid chunk of aggregate human desire.
As such, one who is Subtle has an uneasy relationship with money. One receives money based on how much society desires what they have to offer. Money is a phenomenon that we can experience only in reference to a collective entity.
The dollar is a fiat currency based entirely on public confidence.
Thus the possession of wealth is in a way, a measure of popularity. It is a measure of how valuable each person is to everyone else.
To define oneself by money is thus to worship the desires of everyone else over one’s own desires. The old question goes “If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich?”
This question is itself very revealing. The asker quite obviously perceives money to be the ultimate standard of validation and success. Clearly, it is implied, anyone with brains would put the acquisition of money before all else.
Those who look within are not likely to see the acquisition of wealth as the ultimate good, however. The importance of money for such people derives from a completely different purpose.
-One who is Loud strives for money as the supreme source of validation and social approval.
-On who is Subtle accumulates money to achieve independence from the whims of others.
Big houses and flashy cars are most important to those who let society define them. These possessions are tokens that flaunt society’s approval and esteem for all to see.
The true introvert is far more likely to see such things as superficial and a waste of time. The purpose of wealth is to obtain the ability to control one’s time, to pick and choose who one associates with, to be able to flout social conventions if desired. The principal use of money is not to increase one’s subordination to society but rather to sever one’s compulsory ties insofar as possible.
The hallmark of extroverted wealth is countless hours, even a lifetime spent accumulating as much money and as many tokens of social recognition as possible. Since society’s approval is the meaning of life, all hours are bent on obtaining it. One’s social relationships and self esteem are built upon it.
Without money such a person can hardly be considered to exist.
A fiat currency disappears the moment people stop believing in it. Likewise, those who have built their identity upon money are fiat people in a fiat society. The moment other people stop believing in their value, they will disappear.
To the introvert, money is meaningless if one sacrifices all their time and power while obtaining it. The purpose of money is to secure personal autonomy. I’ve found that a high proportion of extreme introverts have difficulty achieving steady employment. While most people are focused on simply ‘making a living’, one who is Subtle constantly strives to achieve the optimal balance between money and time.
Time is in fact more valuable than money. One can always make more money so long as one has time to make it. Time, however, is a non-renewable resource. We only have it in a discreet quantity that is steadily dwindling. True introverts, then, tend to cooperate with society insofar as is necessary to secure control over their time. In the hands of one who is Subtle, the very lifeblood of society is subverted into freedom from society.