The three wise monkeys are the symbol on our flyer. Since most people love animals, most people also have a lot of enthusiasm for our flyer. But what do the three wise monkeys actually mean, where do they come from and how did they make it to the front page of our social media presences?
Origin of the three wise monkeys
Most of the info about the origin of the three wise monkeys can be found on Wikipedia. Therefore we don’t have to repeat everything here. But let’s look at the most important facts.
It is not entirely clear, whether the three wise monkeys come from China or Japan. The image of them that became popular comes from a Japanese 17th-century craving. Monkeys are taken as a symbol to depict man’s life cycle. Apparently it is possible, that the idea was brought to Japan from China through a Tendai-Buddhist legend. Whatever the case, they come from Asia.
Meaning of the three wise monkeys
Each of the monkeys has a name.
- Mizaru – the see no evil monkey
- Kikazaru – the hear no evil monkey
- Iwazaru – the speak no evil monkey
All monkeys together are guiding the way to avoid evil thoughts. As a result, the person who follows their principle lives a good live. Therefore the monkeys belong to the field of ethics from an philosophical perspective.
The three wise monkeys and Bitbond
At Bitbond we provide financial services that are in a way similar to the core functions of a bank. These core functions comprise taking deposits from the public (and usually paying interest on them) and granting loans to individuals and businesses.
However, banks provide these services in an inferior way. Effective interest rates on deposits are often below 0% if you consider inflation. Loans are mainly granted to larger corporations and businesses that can provide collateral. One other really problematic aspect about banks is that the funds they receive are advanced to them on a short-term basis.
Deposits can usually be withdrawn within one business day. The same funds however are often used to grant loans with a duration of several years. If too many people withdraw money from their bank, it can run out of liquidity. In such a case the bank would need to find a new financing source immediately or it will go bankrupt. A liquidity shortage was the reason why Lehman Brothers had to file for bankruptcy 6 years ago.
We want to remove these evil parts and only keep what is good. Therefore we call ourselves the unbank and feel guided by the three wise monkeys. We also think they make a good fit since bitcoin’s inventor calls himself Satoshi Nakamoto. Event though the origin of Satoshi is not known, the name Satoshi gave himself is Asian.
Being ‘against’ or ‘for’ something
We do not consider banks as evil. They are part of the evolution just like dinosaurs and other extinct species are part of the world’s biological process. Without the past and the things we learned from banks we would not be able to build something better today. But many parts of the way how banks provide their services can be significantly improved.
Therefore we are not ‘against’ banks. We are ‘for’ better financial services.
The actual services that banks provide – loans and interest on savings – are desirable and an integral part of every economy. But we want to keep the evil parts away. A similar approach was taken by salesforce.com with the No Software campaign by the way.
Of course, salesforce.com did build software and the end-product remained similar to that of its competitors. But it delivered software in a completely different way. Software as a service (SaaS) realizes many advantages while removing the disadvantages of locally installed software. Something that we also strive for at Bitbond in a similar way for financial services. Remove the bad part, improve on what’s good.