Why Financial Education Sometimes Fails (The Parable of the Sower)

Tagalog Version (Click Here)

In my previous article (“The Rich vs. Poor Myth: Wealth never Stolen; it is EARNED”), I posted about the Philippine poverty rate of nearly 26%. There is poverty everywhere, EVEN WHEN THERE SHOULDN’T BE.

It’s not just the poor who suffer. Much of the middle class are stuck in the drudgery of the “rat race.” It’s what Filipinos call “isang kahig, isang tuka” (lit. “one scrape, one meal”) or a life of living paycheck to paycheck.

So what is the solution? Most finance bloggers like me would say it’s Financial Education. For many who lack money or prosperity, the solution is to simply LEARN how to EARN it.

Learn how to create value and opportunities, just like every rich person who ever lived (check this article to see why).

There are many success and finance books, seminars, government programs, and many bloggers and writers who write about wealth building… yet very few use it. You can give the BEST Wealth and Finance Training in the World but still fail horribly at enriching people’s lives.


why financial education failsSimply because many won’t use it. They can’t, or they don’t even want to learn or try.


The Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:3-9 NIV)

3 Then he told them many things in parables, saying: “A farmer went out to sow his seed.

4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up.

5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root.

7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants.

8 Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. 9 Whoever has ears, let them hear.”

That parable is not just about spiritual wisdom (as explained in Matthew 13:18-23 NIV), but all forms of it, including financial intelligence.

Proper education, knowledge, and wisdom are like seeds that can grow and bring great things when used properly, but again, very few ever do.


Four Kinds of Soil, Four Kinds of People

Some people are like the Hardened Soil along the road where nothing grows. You give them financial education and they ignore it completely. They won’t even care to try. They’ve been hardened by life and aren’t open to trying anything new.

Thus, the wisdom which could have let them attain their life’s goals are simply lost in the wind.

Others are like Rocky soil. They have a little good soil over them and great ideas sprout. They get excited with what they learned, but as soon as they try, the slightest inconveniences (like saving money instead of spending it all on luxuries) and the difficulties (building businesses or investing) make their hearts wither and their dreams die.

Others still are like soil with thorny plants growing. They find good ideas, but their negative beliefs choke them. They learn how to get a great job, build a business, and invest, and they think:

“We CAN’T do that, we’re just ‘Poor’”
“Rich people are evil (so we’ll never work to be rich)”
“It’s ok to suffer from hunger and homelessness, at least we are (pretending to be) happy”

…and so they never try. Their wrong thoughts and actions never bear good fruit and bring suffering instead.


There are SOME, however, who are like good soil. When they receive knowledge and wisdom, the seeds of wealth (“From Books to Riches”), they will cherish it and use it to earn a better and far more fulfilling life than what they have now.

Those last ones benefit the most from a good education because they are willing to learn and use it. “Whoever has ears, let them hear,” as they say.


It’s not just the Soil

Many who suffer from poverty or the middle-class mediocrity of the “rat race” want to live in abundance and prosperity. There are many who, like good soil, have open minds… but the seeds of knowledge simply can’t reach them.

Those who live in the slums but can’t find any books, internet, or any form of proper education or those who are too busy working for the next paycheck and can’t find the time to educate themselves are stuck as they are, never reaching their dreams.


There is HOPE

“Seek and you shall find.” “When the student is ready, the teacher appears.”

Are those whose minds are like hard, rocky, or thorny soil and those who can’t find the seeds of wisdom doomed?

Certainly not. Once they develop the desire to pursue their dreams, they will naturally start asking the magic question:

“HOW can I do it?”

With that, their minds will open up to search for possibilities: A way to earn more money, a way to start saving, or a lesson that will open up whole worlds of wisdom and opportunities.


Those who need it will find it, learn it, and use it. They’ll find a way… just like how you found us.


For now, think: Of the Four Kinds of Soil…
Which one are YOU right now?


What will you get in life?

Will nothing happen? Will you be choked by thorns of limiting beliefs? Or will you bear great fruit?

You decide.


Your Seeds

Unlike charity or money, when you give ideas and knowledge, it is multiplied by those who listened. You learned to use it, and those you taught have ALSO learned it.

You can become the farmer and share your own seeds of wealth with others.

Share this article on Facebook and let those who seek find, and share your personal insights on the comments below!

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About Ray

Ray is the head writer behind and is a proponent of improving the world using excellent ideas and self-education. He believes that anyone can achieve their goals once they learn how, and he considers it his mission to enrich lives and end poverty by teaching people the lessons they need to succeed.

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