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Amalavajra finishes his series of posts with some books to get you thinking even further about your relationship with money.
Small is Beautiful: Study of Economics as If People Mattered, by E F Schumacher.
The classic text on progressive economics from a former colleague of J.M. Keynes, including a chapter called ‘Buddhist Economics’.
The Buddha on Wall Street: What’s Wrong with Capitalism and What We Can Do about It, by Triratna Order member Vaddhaka
After his Enlightenment the Buddha set out to help liberate the individual, and create a society free from suffering. The economic resources now exist to offer a realistic possibility of providing everyone with decent food, shelter, work and leisure, to allow each of us to fulfil our potential as human beings, whilst protecting the environment. What is it in the nature of modern capitalism which prevents that happening? Can Buddhism help us build something better than our current economic system, to reduce suffering and help the individual to freedom?
It’s not about the Money, by Brent Kessel
The book’s first section explores the Buddhist concept of the “wanting mind”, showing how our minds create irrational links between money and fulfilment; the second explains eight financial archetypes and how to break ingrained habits; the last offers straightforward strategies for saving, investing and philanthropy.
What money can’t buy, by Michael Sandel
Is it ethical to pay people to donate organs? Selling citizenship? Sandel argues that in recent decades, market values have impinged on almost every aspect of life - medicine, education, government, law, even family life. We have drifted from having a market economy to being a market society. In What money can’t buy Sandel asks, Isn’t there something wrong with a world in which everything is for sale? And how do we protect the things that really matter?
Money, Sex, War Karma, by David Loy
Contains a chapter with the most interesting take on money that I have found by a modern Buddhist writer, especially on what money symbolizes for us and how we see it as the ultimate solution for our sense of what Loy calls ‘lack’. This excellent short article by Loy summarises his argument.
The life you can save, by Peter Singer
Would you walk past a drowning child? This book changes the way you think about giving (and fundraising). It shows what you can do, as an individual, about the fact that more than a billion people are living in extreme poverty today.
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