Chinese Wisdom Concerning Money


[19September-2007 @ 17:11 EST: Revised preamble. This page still gets the most search hits:

There is no Anthony de Croud. The e-mail is SPAM. I post things that pique my fancy at the moment. I like the 8 precepts, but the rest of the e-mail is junk. However, I thought it fair to post everything in its entirety.

I did not write the e-mail. I did not forward the e-mail. I strongly encourage you not to forward it either. (I also encourage you to reply to whomever sent you the e-mail and tell them you don't appreciate getting junk mail.)]


Received this in our e-mail (English translation follows):

PRECEPTO CHINO SOBRE EL DINERO

EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR UNA CASA, PERO NO UN HOGAR,
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR UN RELOJ, PERO NO EL TIEMPO.
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR UNA CAMA, PERO NO EL SUEÑO.
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR UN LIBRO, PERO NO EL CONOCIMIENTO.
EL DINERO PUEDE PAGAR UN MÉDICO, PERO NO LA SALUD.
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR UNA POSICIÓN, PERO NO EL RESPETO.
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR LA SANGRE, PERO NO LA VIDA.
EL DINERO PUEDE COMPRAR SEXO, PERO NO EL AMOR.

UN PRECEPTO CHINO TRAE SUERTE, EL ORIGINAL SALIÓ DE LOS PAÍSES BAJOS.

ESTE PRECEPTO YA HA DADO 8 VECES LA VUELTA AL MUNDO, AHORA ES A TI, A QUIEN TRAERÁ SUERTE. DESPUÉS DE HABER RECIBIDO ESTA CARTA, TÚ TENDRÁS BUENA SUERTE. ESTO NO ES NINGUNA BROMA.
LA SUERTE VENDRÁ A TI POR CORREO O POR INTERNET.

ENVÍA UNA COPIA DE ESTA CARTA A LAS PERSONAS QUE REALMENTE NECESITAN BUENA SUERTE, NO ENVÍES DINERO, PORQUE LA SUERTE NO SE COMPRA, Y NO CONSERVES LA CARTA MÁS ALLÁ DE 96 HORAS (4 DÍAS)

ALGUNOS EJEMPLOS DE PERSONAS QUE FUERON AFORTUNADAS DESPUÉS DE HABER RECIBIDO ESTA MISIVA:

CONSTANTIN, RECIBIÓ LA PRIMERA CARTA EN 1953, PIDIÓ A SU SECRETARIA HACER 20 COPIAS. NUEVE HORAS MÁS TARDE GANÓ 99 MILLONES DE MARCOS EN LA LOTERÍA DE SU PAÍS.

CARLOS, EMPLEADO, RECIBIÓ ESTA MISMA CARTA, Y NO LA ENVÍA, ALGUNOS DÍAS MÁS TARDE PIERDE SU EMPLEO. DÍAS DESPUÉS DECIDE CONTINUAR LA CADENA Y SE VUELVE RICO.

EN 1967, BRUNO RECIBIÓ LA CARTA, SE BURLA DE ELLA Y LA BOTA, UNOS DÍAS DESPUÉS SU HIJO CAE ENFERMO. ÉL BUSCA LA CARTA, LA COPIA 20 VECES Y LA ENVÍA. NUEVE DÍAS MÁS TARDE, RECIBE LA FELIZ NOTICIA: SU HIJO SANO Y SALVO.

ESTA MISIVA DE LA SUERTE HA SIDO ENVIADA POR ANTHONY DE CROUD, UN MISIONERO DE ÁFRICA DEL SUR. AL CABO DE 96 HORAS DEBERÁS BOTAR LA CARTA.

LA SUERTE TE LLEGARÁ EN MENOS DE 4 DÍAS A PARTIR DEL MOMENTO EN QUE HAYAS RECIBIDO ESTA CARTA, SI CUMPLES CON LO SOLICITADO EN ELLA.

ESTO ES VERDAD. ESTA MISIVA HA SIDO ENVIADA PARA DAR BUENA SUERTE.
LA SUERTE ACABA DE TOCAR A SU PUERTA.

ENVÍE 20 COPIAS A SUS CONOCIDOS, AMIGOS, FAMILIA.
UNOS DÍAS MÁS TARDE TENDRÁ BUENAS NOTICIAS O UNA GRAN SORPRESA.

YO TE LO ENVÍO YA QUE LA CARTA TIENE QUE DAR LA VUELTA AL MUNDO.

ENVÍE SIMPLEMENTE 20 COPIAS Y ESPERE A VER LO QUE PASARÁ EL NOVENO DÍA.

IMPORTANTE:
NO CAMBIE NADA DEL TEXTO QUE SE LE HA ENVIADO, CÓPIELO EXACTAMENTE COMO SE LO HEMOS DADO.

BUENA SUERTE.


This is my translated version - I think it is reasonably accurate (but I don't speak Spanish - but you figure after almost 11 years of knowing Sofia I would have picked up something):

Money can buy a house, but not a home.
Money can buy a clock, but not time.
Money can buy a bed, but not sleep.
Money can buy a book, but not knowledge.
Money can buy medicine, but not health.
Money can buy power, but not respect.
Money can buy blood, but not life.
Money can buy sex, but not love.

This Chinese wisdom brings luck. The original came from the Netherlands.

This wisdom has circumscribed the world 8 times and now it has come to you and will bring you luck. After receiving this letter you will have good luck. This is no joke.
Luck will come to you by mail or the Internet.

Send a copy of this letter to people who really need good luck, do not send money because luck is not bought and do not keep this letter more than 96 hours (4 days).

Here are examples of people who were fortunate after receiving this letter:

Constatin received the first letter in 1953, and had his secretary make 20 copies. Nine hours later he won 99 million marks in his country’s lottery.

Carlos, a worker, received the same letter and did not forward it. Several days later he lost his job. Afterwards, he decided to continue the chain and became rich.

In 1967, Bruno received this letter, scoffed at it and did not forward it. Several days later, his son fell ill. He found the letter and forwarded 20 copies. Nine days letter his son recovered.

Anthony de Croud, a missionary in South Africa, has sent this lucky letter to you. Within 96 hours you must forward it.

Your luck will arrive within 4 days of having received this letter, if you fulfill the requirements of this letter. This is the truth. This letter has been sent to give good luck.

Luck is knocking at your door.

Send 20 copies to people you know, friends and family. A few days later you will receive good news or a great surprise.

I sent you this because this letter belongs to the world.

Send 20 copies and you will see what will happen on the ninth day.

Important: Change nothing in this letter that you have received. Send it exactly as you received it.

Good Luck


Kind of ties in nicely with people expecting a pattern of action to produce a non-causal outcome.

There is no question (in my mind) that those 8 precepts are true, but the rest of it is hocum.

Comments

Diego Orantes said…
LUCK is nothing more than adequate timing in a particular situation, I have received this letter from a loved one and it hurts to see that this wish of luck hides such thoughts of anguish relating to health and well being,if one wishes LUCK one does not threaten someone to do something he does not wish, I have always believed that one forges his own LUCK with hard work and correct behavior, money to me is the poison that corrodes the structure of society,and because I live in one I am forced to depend on it for everything, along with making a name for one´s self because that is what´s expected in society.

I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO DELIVER THIS MESSAGE TO ANTHONY DE CROUD PERSONALLY, BECAUSE IT IS TO HIM I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO SPEAK MY MIND, SO I SAY IT HERE FOR HIM TO FIND OUT.
Anonymous said…
I got the mail in a german version - it spread out!!!
Anonymous said…
Not to be too blunt (and/or pedantic), but you can actually buy

- time: it's called hiring a secretary (or an assistant)

- health: you can buy medicines to improve it, of course (think Diabetes, etc.)

- life: by surgical means, as it happened to someone I know not too long ago

Nice blog BTW,
Cheers
Darrin said…
I believe luck is a dividend of sweat; the more I sweat, the luckier I get. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings or be a stick in the mud, but a Chinese proverb originating in the Netherlands is a little weird. It seems odd that I have seen this piece several times and it still has only gone around the world 8 times? If Anthony De Croud (who doesn't exist, I checked) sent it, why is it signed J.A.B.? I might even take it a little more seriously if they had used the correct word; later instead of latter multiple times.
Anonymous said…
Can you imagine a "chinese wisdom proverb" coming from Holland? No offense dutchs.....
It´s just a spam guys.
Pablo
Anonymous said…
I just got it in the Italian version! I found it so strange that the 8 precepts appear to stigmatize money but then the letter says that spreading it out you will become rich, and the examples quote people who earned a lot of money too!!
what a foolish thing!:-)
tina
Richard said…
anonymous tina: what a great point! I don't know how I missed it, probably too incensed at being SPAMed
Anonymous said…
"Stigmatise money"? Come on, the message is far from that. The precepts are simply trying to point out that people tend to think too much of the omnipotence of money.
-Emile
Anonymous said…
hey!! im croatian and i ve got this message on croatian! well, i dont belive that that anthony guy really exists but its so cool that the message is so spreading!
Anonymous said…
ok im from australia, got the fwd in the popul;ar language 'english' ive received this email at least twice a year. i dont fwd it 20 times as it states and some time delete it. I havnt had any bad luck to date, if a problem arises its easily fixed. ' Bad luck' happens to those people whom are too lazy to do something with their life and also people whom want others to do it for them.
Anonymous said…
Hi I'm from Poland and I get it on Polish too. This man doesn't exist but I'm wondering: who sends these messages and why does he do that???

But I think bad luck may happen to everybody, not only to lazy people, it doesn't depend on us. Sometimes it is a test of our endurance and it's really necessary.
Frikus
Richard said…
Emile: you are right too.

Anonymous : December 15, 2007 8:54 AM to be honest, I don't know whether it is cool that this SPAM gets translated or not. On the one hand, it shows the industriousness of people, on the other hand, it also shows their tendency to spread nonsense.

Anonymous : January 02, 2008 6:16 AM I don't know which language is most prevalent. Looking at my hit logs, people land on this page from all over the world. I wish people would stop sending this message. I can see it in waves. The past two years, there was a big spike in hits following New Year's.

Frikus:yet another translation? Hmmm ... I wonder how many languages it circulates in? It might be interesting to collect the text in its various versions. Hmmm ... I wonder if some sociology student could do a paper on the "phenomenon" of this SPAM and its translations?

While people can experience bad luck - it is simply a random occurrence, just like good luck. Often, what people call "bad luck" is simply the result of poor planning and execution. My favourite example is those people who say they have sent out hundreds of job applications and only received a handful of responses. Since I also job hunt, I know what it is like. If my response rate is lower than 25%, I know there is something wrong with what I am doing.

Or, as the saying goes, "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, hoping for a different result." Or in my favourite version, "If you keep doing what you have always been doing, you will keep getting the results you have always been getting."
Youla from Athens said…
I am greek but just received the English version... I agree with most comments, and just to sum things up (as I like highlights and bullet points), here are the major "flaws" in this "chinese proverb"...
(a) why is there a signature J.A.B. which does not correspond to the "author",
(b) why is there a promise of money for forwarding the e-mail, if money con't buy you blah-blah-blah,
(c) why should you send to your friends a "good luck" letter in which you indirectly threaten them that bad things may happen to them if they don't forward it, and
(d) how come, if you don't modify anything in the file, it will keep on circulating around the world but still it will "have gone 8 times" only...

Have a nice day then, with or without forwarding this mail!!!
Anonymous said…
i aslo recive it this e-mail and sent it out to 20 people it is not nice to send thing sif they dont mean anything how would you like it if they sent you somthing and at the end of the day it is a silly joke that is not nice you have nothing better to do then write stupid things all round the world what else can i say i would like to speck my mind but nevermind
Richard said…
anonymous: I did NOT write the e-mail. I RECIEVED it like so many other people. I did post it on my blog because parts of it were of interest. But, if you read my entry, I strongly advise people to (1) not forward it and (2) e-mail the person who sent it and tell them not to send you junk.
maria sp. said…
Hi!
I'm from Greece too and I just received the chain letter in Greek!!
Yes, it keeps being circulated and translated! At least, I've had a funny break from work for the past half-hour, reading blogs around the world, about this hoax!
Cheers!
Lawrence said…
I just got this and actually I have met the real Anthony De Croud.

He told me to tell everyone that he is doing very well...and he has had incredible luck. For example:

He met a South African lady...got AIDS...then according to local beliefs, he sought out a virgin, because local belief has it that this will cure AIDS. Since he had sent the chain letter out, it worked...he was cured.

Now he has 17 children from 14 different women. He is working on his next chain letter, which he believes will be even better.

And...he told me to tell you that the letter did in fact circulate around the world 843234 times, however, because 843226 people broke the chain, he has disqualified those trips.

And, finally...he wanted me to tell you thateven though HE is a Dutch man, the proverbs are in fact Chinese proverbs which he collected from those fortune cookies you get from carry-out. IN fact, he wanted me to post one just for you...
"Confucius say...Fool who break chain letter, soon parted with money"

Cheers
Anonymous said…
okay, so i just got it again in powerpoint. don't think the original was in that format (?)!
Anonymous said…
A man won $99 million in 1953??? Ya right!!!!
Anonymous said…
People, do you not realize these emails are sent for a purpose.
That purpose is to collect email addresses and sell them to companies who either send you spam ads or monitor you user habits.
There is money in this practise.
Check it out and lets get rid of spam once and for all.
Olena said…
Interesting what people say about the message, but it is definitely an hoax. Just wanted to say that this message started circulating on a Russian classmates.com-like web site. Got it twice already. ;)
nookiputz said…
I just got the chain letter in Israel in English. I feel much better about not passing it on after having read everyone else's comments, which collated together could also turn into a Chinese proverb.
Anonymous said…
i got this email from a so-called friend and its a romanian version. I think its all junk just from the way it sounds and im even surprised that that person could believe in such craps and sent it to alot alot of people at once (among them my id was writen)
Farawaylady said…
I got this Chinese wisdom thing twice already in Portuguese with lots of spelling and grammatical mistakes. The same sentences have been around before without claiming Chinese origin. Somebody signed the things with an e-mail, but since I deleted it, I cannot tell you his name. Just to let you know that this moment it is making the rounds in Brazil. Love, Farawaylady
Anonymous said…
Write some 'wise' sentences.
Then instruct people to do what you say. Frighten them off if they don't and give them (false) hope when they do. And finally demand they are not allowed to change your message they are insisted to send around.

Sounds to me the practice of a religion. And what those practices have brought us the last 2000 years. Death, suppression, poverty, abuse and I can continue for a long time.
For the rest, make up your own mind if you want to participate in this.
Anonymous said…
Chinese proverbs from Netherlands...


Wow!
Anonymous said…
oh my goodness, how scary is MARIA? She says she's met the real Anthony De Croud who got AIDS 'cause he slept with a woman with it in Africa !!! WTF ?? Then he sought out a virgin to cure it (this is a heinous practice in Africa by the way) and now he has 17 children or wives or whatever, again WTF ??? He sounds like a hideous, dirty old man who is clearly a sandwich short of the picnic basket. Perhaps MARIA is one of his wives? I don't know if this email is spam or a way to collect emails etc but it's definitely not for real. If only it were that easy :)
laura anne said…
I've received it about twice in Chinese, which I am able to understand. It states that it is "not a joke" and changes the ninety-nine million Constantin received to just one million. Several other details are changed, too. I can assure you that they are not common Chinese proverbs; simply words of wisdom, and are in a continuous sentence. That said, they are very well-written.
I googled Anthony de Croud, hoping to get an urbanlegends result, but instead found your entry, which is as good if not better. :)
Anonymous said…
Well, it is back into the States. I just got the email hoax. I remember getting it before but did not think too much about it. Now, I checked for this Anthony guy, and I am glad I got to this site. It is sad to believe that these type of emails still get around.
Anonymous said…
I received it in a Power Point Presentation from a college instructor in China with this comment: "微笑,拈花;走马,天涯。" Google Translator makes it out to mean: "Smile, Nianhua; cursory, and the End of the World." Which is sufficiently inscrutable--but I hope she meant it as a wry observation about human frailties.
Anonymous said…
i just received it in russian. from uzbekistan.
Brad L. said…
If the bad luck happens "after 96 hours" and the good stuff begins "within 4 days"... then aren't we all ahead?
Anonymous said…
Got the mail in Serbia (Europe), in Serbian. Glad I found this site before deciding what to do. Explained a lot of things to me, in generally, why do any kind of chain letters exist. It's always money in question, and I don't like it. Will not send it, of course. Good people, I wish you all health and happiness in your life!
Anonymous said…
我也收到了,我不知道Anthony De Croud最开始传这封信时是出于什么目的,但它确实是流转了好多年,不知道如果Anthony De Croud还活着的话,是该高兴呢,还是该痛苦呢,毕竟我觉得这封信确实给很多人带来了苦脑
Anonymous said…
Unfortunately, the owner of this blog passed on quite some time ago. You see, he didn't forward the email, and after 96 hours...

;-)
Anonymous said…
if it's a chinese proverb, it should have been developed a long time ago right? i don't think they had conventional clocks at that time :T
Anonymous said…
I never knew that one day I cou;d do somethin so bad lyk dis in my lyf. I've learned that, I ain't got 2 jump into quick decision without havin concrete nor valid info about thingz I face on my daily basis. I won't 4get that "My LORD is my SHERPERD, He keeps me safe 4rom bad things"
Anonymous said…
I recieved this letter 4rom my Mom. She neva knew. Anyway "Oh Lord, You're Holy"
Anonymous said…
There is no such thing as luck. You cannot give it to someone, put it in an envelope, put it in a paper bag. send it in the post. Blessings however are different. As all good things come from God so do blessings. Ask God for them and when you receive in His way you will have received EVERYHHING
laura anne said…
In reply to Anonymous:
The Chinese did indeed have conventional clocks. In fact, the Chinese invented the first mechanical clock.
achagoosee said…
Hey, Maria: I thought your satire was brilliant.You should have your own blog!
Anonymous said…
Hi, I'm from Czech Republic - have the Czech version - received it more than one from good friends :( - going to send them link to this website!
When I read that e-mail first, I liked the "proverb" - but of course hated the end - didn't send it 20 times.
Petra
Richard said…
@Petra: I agree. The "proverb" is fine, but the rest is foolishness.
Anonymous said…
I just received this junk mail, and forwarded it to 20 people, just
in case.
Anonymous said…
I received this today from a very well intentioned lady. I received this a few years back with the 8 million number. too.

I responded to her and all the people on her distribution and tore it apart. Just like people have done here. I did miss the 99 million dollar lottery in 1953. : )

I no sooner hit send and one of the people on her distribution had already sent it to me. I wasn't as nice to him and I told him not to forward just any crap he gets. He didn't even check who was on her distribution, so he wouldn't send it to them again & in this case me.

Maria is a satirist? I thought she was just being facetious.

There are so many dopes in this world that I expect to see this again. I guess that's how we in the US are in so much trouble now.

Also good to see so many of my relatives responding.
Charlie Anonymous
Anonymous said…
Every individual has their own opinion.It just happened that I received this what you call junk mail or spam mail from a very optimistic friend so I forwarded it anyway. I still find some "truth" in the message.Of course the "threats" are not nice.But the fact that it was sent for GOOD LUCK,I got nothing to lose.It is INTENDED for those who needed the LUCK the most.I am already a very lucky lady in so many ways. luckylady
Anonymous said…
Seems like everybody is not taking any chance. Or they think they need that luck? Afterall, it does not cost much to forward the message to 20 ppl.
I just received this same message, looking at this blog first written in 2006, it's stil going round after so many years.
So should I keep it going? May be, because no harm having a little more luck.
Anonymous said…
Scary!!! You can't by what you want with money!!!???
caz said…
what a load of crap!the proverb is fab,all common-sense.when people say that the bible quotes "that the blind shall see,i am sure he meant the answer is there for you if you open your eyes.even if it is not the answer your looking for.why are people so gullible to money.it nice to be nice.this might make you happy..pehaps another word for luck.haha
tara said…
When people really mean well, then they simply send 'the words of wisdom' to their friends and loved ones ( and not necessarily 20 of them)because they want to share it, and in this way send some happy thoughts.
It should not be done out of fear, because the e-mail in question sounds like a curse. And where's the beauty in sending curse around the world (and in particular to the people we know and love).
If supposedly 75% of people that did forward the mail had gotten rich, then most of the world population by now (since 1953)would be rich, and sadly we know this is not the case.
It is amazing how primitive the entire idea is...that feeds on the fear and superstition of people... as if almost we happen to be in "the Dark Ages".
Honestly, don't people have anything better to do than create such crap and actually circulate it around ????
Rgds,
Tara
tara said…
...and what happens if you do not have 20 e-mail addresses you could send it to, e.g. your friends or family members do not have an e-mail address (for whatever reason) ...then what?
run out to the street and ask the passers by for their e-m address?
Anonymous said…
Dear Richard, you didnt send message. now look what happend;
bad luck, your blog get spammed with comments....
Anonymous said…
Maybe the purpose of it all is to collect as many email adresses as posible and then sell them to compagnies etc. who think they can use them?..
Does anybody else of you know the real reason?
Jazz said…
I was doing some housekeeping of emails and found this chain mail, sent to me some considerable time ago. I didn't send it on and I clearly haven't deleted it - YET! Thought I would check out this Anthony de Croud person and found this thread. Interesting comments, food for thought. My life has improved since receipt of the email, (2009!)not worsened because I didn't send it on. Here i go, DELETE...
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