Poverty is the opposite of abundance. Abundance is a virtue. However, poverty is not a virtue, was never a virtue and will never be a virtue. Why? This is because a virtue is something that is beneficial to one self as well as to others. A virtue also stands the test of time. In other words, a virtue is valid in the past, in the present and also in the future.
Poverty is neither beneficial to oneself nor is it beneficial to others. Poverty causes hardship to one self. It leads to hunger, sickness, sense of injustice, anger and even violence. It also leads to a host of other negative repercussions and social problems, such as theft, violence and even war. So, it is also not beneficial to others and to society as a whole.
The other thing to note is that poverty is a state of mind, not physical appearance. Those who understand spirituality know that there is a huge difference between contentment and poverty.
Contentment is a state of mind where there is little desire for things or to possess things. Contentment is being happy or satisfied with what you already have. Whatever there is, it is enough. There is no fear of lack.
Poverty, on the other hand, is a state of mind where there is a sense of lack, of not enough, of inadequacy. Poverty is a manifestation of fear and is associated with a sense of insecurity.
Outwardly, both contentment and poverty may be seen as having few things and possessions, but contentment is happy with little while poverty is unhappy with the same.
Those who do not understand that poverty is a state of mind mistook poverty as a virtue simply because they compare the few things that ascetics and monks possess and the few things that poor people have, and then draw the wrong conclusion that poverty is good. They compare only the physical but not the mental state.
From here, we can now be clear that poverty is not a virtue, but contentment is. So, strive to be happy with what you have and to let go of the fear of lack or inadequacy. Strive to understand the source of your deepest fears and learn to overcome them. When you overcome your fears, you simultaneously overcome poverty in your mind.
Abundance comes about when the mind is free from the fear of lack.