Thursday, 25 September 2008
The Livelihood of Greed and Wisdom
written by Kyle
Its no secret the financial markets of much of the world, especially in the United States, are tipping dangerously close to a modern day global crisis. Inflation is soaring, unemployment is rising and currency is being devalued faster than a VHS tape of Hee Haw at a flee market. No question that some poor government policies and a looooong leash given to investment firms and banks via deregulation have created a quagmire of worthless debt and a spidering earthquake of financial instability.
Greed is such a powerful force. Like a Heroin addict in a poppy field, greed will leave a highway of destruction through the hearts of the most righteous men. Money and power can drive us to do such selfish and shameful actions, we can get blinded by want, unmindful of those it affects. The only thing that trickles down from the top is pain, suffering and despair. Weather does not discriminate again the homeless man and hunger does not wait for payday.
What we do in our lives, the livelihood we choose, affects everyone and everything in some fashion. Even today, especially these events of the last couple of weeks, remind us that what we choice to make our money at still holds great importance in our practice. This does not mean we need to renounce money and material things or good paying jobs. It means we, as Buddhists, need to be mindful of greed and the golden mouse trap of treasure it offers.
We should enjoy the abundance earned by our hard work and the material comforts this modern world offers, as long as we are mindful. Go to Orlando, see that giant damned mouse and play Put-Put in Bermuda shorts and knee high socks, but remember to be mindful. Live in this world knowing what we do is not ultimately separate from all things, even from a family left homeless in Kansas City, Missouri or a single mother of three struggling to feed her family tonight in Dublin, Ireland.
"There are many things that we would throw away if we were not afraid that others might pick them up.”