Shya: Most people relate to money mechanically. They’ll get
upset over being charged a dime too much at the checkout counter
or get outraged that somebody charged them a dollar extra for
something. I remember when I used to shop around for a whole day
to save a dollar or two on a piece of electronics equipment.
When I was operating mechanically, I couldn’t see that my time
was worth more than the dollar I saved. How it started to change
for me was my becoming aware that I was doing it.

Ariel: Most people don’t realize that their reality about
anything, including money, is just their reality and not
reflective of Reality as a whole.

Shya: Each individual’s reality is not “The Truth.” It’s just
the way they view it, and have held as the truth. There are many
possible realities about life, and if there are many possible
realities about life, then there are many possible realities
about money. Money is a reflection of how you live your life.
Some people have closets full of clothes that they never wear,
but it makes them feel as if they have wealth.

Free Spirit: How come there are so few people who can observe
what they are doing, who can be in the moment?

Shya: Most people are lost in their lives, Paul. They are not
present. They are thinking about things way off in the future.
They are worrying about possible scenarios in their lives. If
you are not observing, moment-to-moment, how you are being in
your life, you are not going to observe how you are with money,
or with sex, or with relationships, or work. People are usually
just too busy in their lives to take a step back for a moment,
and see how they are relating.

Free Spirit: Okay, so it’s a package deal then. You can’t have
your money together, and not have your life together.

Shya: Right. See, the goals that most people set for their
lives aren’t ever going to make them happy, aren’t ever going to
make them satisfied. They never make it that way. You can’t get
there from here. What you can do is discover who you are in this
moment. And then, everything else unfolds. If you need money,
money’s there. See, I don’t go around worrying about where the
money’s going to come from. I really don’t. I don’t ever think
about it. My relationship with money shifted when my
relationship with life shifted, when I stopped clutching at life
to try to survive, and discovered that if I let myself float,
the water would support me, and that life would support me if I
stopped trying to make something happen.

Ariel: But, Shya and I are not particularly “New Age.” I know
the philosophy of “Oh, just let it go and let life take care of
itself,” and I tell you, we are not advocating “letting go” of
your responsibilities. If you owe money for your rent, or for
your car payment, or for your food, you need to take care of

Shya: You’ve got to take care of what’s in front of you each
moment. If you’ve got debts, you take care of the debts. If your
house is dirty, you clean your house. If there’s work on your
desk that needs to get done, you look at what needs to get done
next and you do it. Then money shows up. Then you start to come
into a balance with yourself. You’re not at deficit. You’re not
hiding all of these things that you don’t want to see.

Ariel: There was a fellow last year who genuinely wanted to
attend one of our longer residential groups out of the country
3Len2 was a waiter and really didn’t have much money. So he got
three jobs. In the end, Len made more than enough money to come,
and had enough extra to shop and participate in extra
activities, like snorkeling, while at the group. He had a really
good time. But, the point isn’t actually that he made enough
money to go, the point is that he went for it. If you want
something and you go for it full tilt, even if you fall short,
if you’ve really gone one hundred percent, the resentment won’t
be there, because satisfaction is in the act of going for it.
People go fifty percent, twenty percent, seventy-five percent in
their lives, and then they wonder why life feels mediocre

Shya: You see, people use money as an excuse to not do what
they don’t really want to do anyway. And, it’s a convenient
excuse. They don’t really want something, but they don’t say
“No, I don’t want that.” They say, “I can’t afford it.”

Free Spirit: Is observing and seeing what is, without judging
it, the key to where a transformation around money can occur?

Shya: Yes Paul, it is. It is akin to being an anthropologist,
observing an aboriginal tribe and the way they do things– “Oh I
see, around money they do this, this and this, and around trade
they do this, this, and this, and around relationship they do
this, this, and this.” Now, the tribe may not be in accord with
the anthropologist’s own cultural ideology, but his job, if he
or she’s doing it right, is to observe what’s going on without
judging, to just say, “Oh I see, that’s what they do.” If you
could do that with your life, you would transform. You wouldn’t
know why you transformed, but all the problems in your life
would start to disappear, including the ones around money.

Free Spirit: So, your intention is to observe, but it seems
that inevitably, on some level, your judgments are going to come
up about it.

Ariel: That is true. However, that is also a part of observing.
You can’t expect to be neutral. You also have to observe your
internal process, which includes all your judgments.

Free Spirit: Okay, things are coming up in your life, and you
observe them. And they’re not bad, they’re not good, they’re
just what comes up, which takes some sort of a level of, I don’t
know if discipline is the word–

Shya: Awareness. Awareness is the thing that’s going to free
you in every aspect of your life, whether it be money, whether
it be relationship, whatever it is.

Free Spirit: So, to speculate, why is the world so unaware?

Shya: Well, how many aware people have you known in your day-to-
day life that one can learn from?

Free Spirit: That’s true.

Shya: We saw a movie on television last night about a little
deaf girl, and her family and another family. The girl goes to
live with the other family and she learns about love, about
compassion, about caring for people, and she learns about
kindness–that didn’t exist in her family. And when her father
comes back and wants her to come home, she says “No I don’t want
to live with you. These people taught me about love, and
compassion, and kindness and sharing. How come you didn’t?”
Well, he didn’t, because he didn’t know any better.

Ariel: She didn’t know any better until she had a direct
experience that kindness, compassion and caring existed. Until
you have a direct experience of something, it only exists as a

Shya: And you might not even have a concept. It might not even
get that far. The idea of awareness is one thing. The reality of
awareness is entirely different. If you’re being aware, then
people around you start to discover their own awareness. If
you’re around people who are not aware, you never wake up, you
never become aware, unless of course you have a near-death
experience or something like that. And that frequently shocks
people out of the system in which they’ve lived, to the point
that they become aware.

Ariel: People can have an experience of being aware, and it can
be a really intense, life-altering experience, but what happens
is, experience fades over time, and then it becomes a memory.
Even near death experiences eventually devolve into concepts,
ideas, and stories. Soon people are again living mechanically
only this time out of what appears to be a new and improved
system and they miss the intensity of the next moment of now.

Free Spirit: How come awareness isn’t treasured like gold?

Shya: Well, awareness is treated a lot like money. As though
it’s hard to come by, you’ve got to work hard to get it, you’ve
got to suffer long hours and sacrifice for it. You don’t have
to. Awareness is very easy to come by. All it requires is that
you get into this moment, and then you’re there.

Ariel: You have to want to be aware more than anything else.
See most people have good life stories. If awareness becomes
more important than anything else, your attachment to your story
and to your personal history starts to fade. That’s the good
history, the bad history, and who you’ve identified yourself to
be. This doesn’t mean that you won’t have a past. It simply
means that your history, around money in this instance, will no
longer be the determining factor in how you are in this moment.

Shya: People hold money as a vehicle to get someplace.
Someplace better than this. And it never gets better than this.
It gets different than this, but it never gets better than this.
This moment is all there is. If you live in this moment,
everything’s taken care of. Everything. If you resist this
moment, and think that this is wrong, and when you get
sufficient funds in your life, you’ll be happy, you’ll never
make it. Because you may get that money–a lot of poor people
have gotten very rich, but they’re still poor inside. Money
doesn’t make you happy. The lack of money doesn’t make you
unhappy or in deficit as a human being, and having money isn’t
an asset, as a human being. How you interact with it is a
reflection of how you interact with yourself. And until you
learn to look at how you interact with yourself, whether you
have money or not, it won’t be satisfying. There’s another quest
involved. The quest isn’t for money, it’s for who you are, it’s
for what your reality is, what your truth is, in this lifetime.

Free Spirit: Which seems to be a quest.

Shya: Well, it is a quest, but it’s a quest where the end is
always present in the moment. It’s not, “Someday, when I become
enlightened…” It’s being enlightened now. There’s no reason
why you can’t be, right now.

Free Spirit: It seems hard to grasp.

Shya: Great! It is very difficult to grasp. Because you’re
trying to grasp this idea of awareness, self-realization,
enlightenment, in a system that cannot be aware, self-realized
or enlightened. Your mind is a past/future-oriented system. It
cannot hold the present moment. It can only hold the past or the
future. And, you’re trying to understand it, which means you’re
trying to put this moment into that past/future system. It won’t
work there. You’re talking a whole separate reality when you
talk awareness. Awareness is a different reality. It’s not the
reality that 99.9%of the planet lives. They live past/future.
“How can I apply this to my life in the future so I can make
more money?”

Free Spirit: And even if you are in the moment, it seems you’re
infinitely pulled away, or easily pulled away, backward or

Ariel: That is true. There is a definite current in our culture
to pull you backward or forward. It’s like the tide. The ocean’s
tides are going a certain way. And if you’re in it, it’s going
to carry you with them.

Free Spirit: So, how–

Shya: Again, the answer to your question is awareness. That’s
the only answer to your question. You’re going to say, “Well,
how do you do this? How do you keep from being sucked into the
past/future by a society which is totally past/future?
Awareness. You start to notice when it happens, you don’t make
yourself wrong for it. As soon as you catch yourself being
sucked into it, you stop making yourself wrong for it. You just
notice you did it again. And you let it alone. The space you’re
talking about, where people’s reality around life and money and
sex and relationship and their job, where that all transforms–
that happens around awareness. No matter how much you try to
make money, you’ll never be satisfied with money. There’s no
satisfaction in that. The satisfaction is in you, and that
happens through awareness. Awareness is the key to everything.



Ariel and Shya Kane are internationally acclaimed seminar leaders and business consultants whose revolutionary technology, Instantaneous Transformation, has helped thousands of individuals and companies worldwide. The Kanes’ best-selling book, Working on Yourself Doesn’t Work: A Book About Instantaneous Transformation, is available at local and online bookstores, via the Kanes’ website or by calling toll-free 800-431-1579. Ariel and Shya lead evening and weekend groups in Manhattan, dedicated to supporting people in living in the moment and having extraordinary, fulfilling lives. For more information, including dates and location, call 908-479-6034 or visit their website: