One of the more annoying things I hear and read said about Wolfgang Mozart is that he was ‘not good with money.’ That he dealt with significant issues having to do with money is not the issue — it is that Mozart tends to be judged as a spendthrift. Some have claimed he was a gambler. All of this tends to color his achievements with something flagrantly negative. And let’s not forget that usually those who knew him personally and then claimed he was ‘not good with money’ frequently did little or nothing to help him. Even worse, some of them deliberately sandbagged him.
All of Wolf’s issues about ‘money’ started with his overbearing father Leopold, who claimed responsibility for creating the Mozart legend. That he used a young child in a manner that nowadays might have (or at least should have) gotten him in trouble for exploiting a child was never an issue when it came to feeling comfortable in berating Mozart’s use of money. We can say, in fact, hindsight being perfect, that his father may have conditioned Mozart to believe he was ‘not good with money.’
Let’s also take into account that Wolf was the first classical music superstar. His credentials were impeccable — performing for the crowned heads of Europe at a very young age, no one in their right mind could call anything he did ‘insignificant’. The royals, however, did not find it necessary to pay fairly for their entertainment, so, usually, the Mozarts were stuck eating in the kitchen with the servants and given tokens, such as watches and snuffboxes, for their efforts, instead of cold hard cash. And so, in a sense, dealing with royalty from a young age may have contributed to convincing Mozart that he was not good at generating money.
Mozart seemed to be on a schedule. It is almost as though he could hear the grim reaper (or was it, for example, the dark angel I call Lermontov) breathing down his neck, waiting to claim him and silence him forever. So he worked at a feverish pace, using the gifts Gd had given him, whether he fully understood them or not.
But in all the demands made on Mozart during his relatively short life of just less than 36 years, there is not one person who said, ‘Wait a moment, do I even really understand Mozart?” Had they done this, they might have found that his worldview was completely different in some significant ways, from their own. How he thought, how he worked, everything was different. Some seemed to grab a clue as to the extraordinary quality of his mind, but those seemed to simply want to steal what he had, and silence him so that he would be unable to point them out and hold them accountable.
What they might have found is that Mozart was not accountable to men, but to Gd, for his use of substance. The gifts that had been given him did not work according to the standards of the world, but of the Atonement. Only by digging into the Word could Mozart understand how Gd wanted to provide for him. But Wolf was a Catholic, and most at that time were encouraged to let the church do their thinking and Bible reading for them.
With that understanding, we can then approach the issues of Mozart’s use and problems with money in an enlightened manner. We can see that the lack of tithing and emphasis on giving would have tended to quench the gifts he had been given. We can see that not putting Gd first in all things can have terrible consequences to our supply — such as his becoming a member of the Masons. We can see that rushing ahead blindly rather than waiting on the Lrd can only lead to debt, no matter how great the gifts we have been given. And perhaps we can even sympathize with Mozart’s desire to put the food on the table and provide for his wife and children — something that was always a challenge for him to do — because he was doing it on his own.
And perhaps we can determine not to repeat his mistakes…:-0
*Mozart For Believers