8 Things We Can Learn From Buddha About Money (Part 1)
Money Lessons from Buddha
The Eightfold Path was given by the Buddha as part of the Four Noble Truths.
As such, they are understood to be the way out of suffering.
The principles of the Eightfold Path can also be applied to all aspects of life, including finances, and will take you as far as you dream you can go.
SEE ALSO: 7 Spiritual Ideals To Live Your Life By
Right View (or Understanding)
Right understanding means understanding that the Four Noble Truths are noble and true. The Four Noble Truths are the core essence of Buddha’s teachings, though they leave much unexplained.
They include the truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering, and the truth of the path that leads to the end of suffering.
Through his teachings and tips of wisdom on happiness, simple living, and finding peace, Buddha taught that attaching ourselves to material possessions and other “stuff” of this worldly life is the root cause of suffering and a barrier to enlightenment and peace.
Similarly, when we view our financial achievements as the achievements and an end in itself, we end up assigning importance where none really ought to exist.
When we have the right understanding of both the cause and cure for suffering, we are able to remove ourselves from this mindset and this way of living life.
Additionally, we are able to shift our perspective to see the money in our bank account as a means for achieving a different type of ends.
This shift can facilitate a more helpful reflection on what’s working or not working for us, as well as a deeper understandings of our true needs.
Practicing non-attachment to our wealth can also make it easier to share, save for bigger projects, and use money for more important purchases — making sure we put our money to best use instead of wasting or hoarding it.
Right Thought (or Resolve)
Right thought involves making a resolution to practice the Buddhist faith and guiding principles.
It takes dedication and resolve to work towards our aspirations — just like having clear business targets or important personal finance goals (like paying off student debt or saving up for important purchases).
Right thought is a pillar of sound financial grit and determination. When we pick our goals wisely and focus our energy, we move forward with steady resolve and singularity of thought.
Right speech involves avoiding slander, gossip, lying, and all forms of untrue and abusive speech.
In Buddhist tradition, right speech also means speaking gently with others, and, by extension, also ourselves.
From a financial perspective this entails using positive self-talk, creative visualization, and mantras to help us change our beliefs and achieve our monetary goals.
Some people may see money as the root of all evil or feel deprived and lacking in accumulating it. However, in reality, money is merely a tool that we can also use to do a great amount of good in the world.
Once we change our self-talk about money, new avenues of understanding and facilitation will open.
Right conduct means adhering to the idea of nonviolence, as well as refraining from any form of stealing or sexual impropriety. Avoid businesses that require violent acts or that promote sexual indecency if you are aiming to follow Buddhist teachings.
In business, right conduct also entails being fair and just in our financial dealings with others and not stealing from anyone we work with.
We must add a reasonable profit to our products and services without price gouging.
There should always be a fair, set price that is based on adequately compensating ourselves for our efforts while netting us a reasonable but not excessive profit so that we can reinvest in our businesses.
We also need to be mindful of how we treat, and compensate, our employees. The more generous we are with our suppliers, co-workers, employees, and clients, the more bountiful our life will be in both spiritual and financial ways.
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