Richest Man In Babylon – By George S. Clason – Part 1

In today’s post I will take a somewhat hardline stance, perhaps even a slightly contraversial view, about all the books on personal finance out there today. They are all RUBBISH when compared to George S. Clason’s – RICHEST MAN IN BABYLON written back in 1926!!, especially given the fact that many of the idea’s written in this book have been plagiarised and twisted by current “financial guru’s” to make it seem as if most of their idea’s are original or profound in some way. And I’ll state write now, my own wealth creation strategies, which I dedicated a section on this blog to, is primarily based on the principals found in this book but with a few modern updates naturally.

The book itself can be viewed as a collection of stories or fables which provide the reader with a set of money principals which in my view stand the test of time and will do so long after we are all dust. Lets take a look at the most common principals most personal finance guru’s espouse today and how they basically just ripped the idea’s from this book.

1. Setting aside a part of your income to build up your savings and wealth. This is a very reasonable and highly recommended step towards achieving financial prosperity. Take for example David Bach’s “pay-yourself-first” principal, indeed a fantastic and very sound idea, but it seems it’s already been put forward many years before with one of the books very first and main laws of money, “… a part of all you earn is yours to keep” or as explained further in the book under SEVEN CURES FOR A LEAN PURSE,

“… For every ten coins thou placest in thy purse take out for use but nine. Thy purse will start to fatten at once and it’s increasing weight will feel good in they hand and bring satisfaction to the soul.”

Roughly translated, keep at least 10% of all you earn aside as savings, MAGIC, I’d say David Bach’s made plenty of 10% savings from all the books he’s sold espousing this 1 principal alone.

I will continue this review in the following days …


14 Responses to Richest Man In Babylon – By George S. Clason – Part 1

  1. terry says:

    I earn minimum wage and have student loan debt. Is it realistic to expect me to save 10% of what little I earn?

    Also, this is a good time to point out that (as I recall) Clason said that lenders will be happy to lend you money to acquire income-producing assets (as opposed to consumer junk). Unfortunately, I have tried this without success.

  2. BigBuddha says:

    Hello Terry,

    And thanks for being the first commentor on this little blog of mine.

    Unfortunately I can’t say whether 10% is a realistic goal for you as i’m not sure of your “personal balance sheet”, ie what your income and expense are.

    In saying that, perhaps it maybe prudent to at least put aside something if not 10% right now and perhaps build up to it as your income increases and your expenses decrease over time.

    Borrowing to purchase income-producing assets is certainly a worthwhile venture, I would seek a number of different lenders, remember “do the numbers” first before investing into anything

  3. Emmanuel says:

    i attended a business seminar and was introduced to The richest Man In Babylon a few days ago was indeed a great insight for me.. i intend to practise the principles espoused in the book and believe strongly that they are very sound and will work for my situation..

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  5. mab says:

    This is easily one of my favorite personal finance books! Very inspirational.

    Really got me thinking about things differently.

    In response to terry, it’s not so much about 10%, it’s more about the concept. Start with 1% if you have to, but start with something! On the flip side, if you’ve worked up to 10%, you don’t need to stop there. In my opinion, you should save whatever is comfortable for you and always strive for more assets instead of liabilities.

    I’ve got a series of posts about the topic, if you’re interested:

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