Saddharaja talks about his impressions of visiting India and witnessing the rise of economic development of the sub-continent. He explores some history of the business relationship that has existed between India and the UK - over hundreds of years.
He goes on to explore the importance of personal money within the lives of Buddhists working in Right Livelihood, and asks the question: Is it possible to live without money today?
He focuses on extreme views that Right Livelihood workers can fall into with regards to their personal financial circumstances, and makes some suggestions about finding a 'Middle Way' approach to our money within the Right Livelihood context, which he dubs 'Right Realism'.
He identifies four kinds of financial situation that Right Livelihood workers are likely to inhabit, and makes six suggestions for developing Right Realism.
In his first visit to Windhorse: Evolution for several years Subhuti gives a rousing talk on some of the history behind team-based Right Livelihood within the Triratna Buddhist Movement.
He then goes on to explain why it is so important; because it represents an opportunity to live a ‘full’ Buddhist life for ourselves and present society with an alternative to consumerism and the myth of progress through buying a bigger TV…
A talk by Parami given at Windhorse:Evolution. It’s good stuff too - her usual enthusiatic exploration of the earthy and ethereal details of everyday spiritual practice, especially within the framework of a sense of the ‘collective’. Some great and pretty funny stories from early, would-be-revolutionary experiments with co-operative working (“The opiate of the masses has arrived!”), and some wise words from her subsequent experience of trying to square the circle of dealing with one’s own individuality within a working sangha.
Here’s a talk by Parami on ‘virya’ - ‘energy in pursuit of the good’, given at Windhorse:Evolution, a large and successful Buddhist team-based right livelihood business. But its concerns are certainly not parochial - a good, strong (sometimes even idealistic!) evocation of the co-operative spirit of Buddhist work and of spiritual practice in general, with particular reference to Shantideva’s ‘Bodhicharyavatara’. The Bodhisattvas descend, the Bodhichitta is called down, and Parami is off and rolling on her favourite subject… With a...
In this penultimate talk in the series, Saddharaja explores modern technology in the workplace, and the impact on Team-Based Right Livelihood practice.
There are so many benefits to changing technology - especially the internet, but what about the dark side? How do we deal with that? How can we turn our use of cutting-edge technology into a spiritual practice? Saddharaja explores the practice of discernment, and how to avoid the many well known pitfalls and distractions of the digital age.
He advocates we seek the Middle Way, and makes six suggestions which he terms 'Right Craftsmanship': 1) Upskilling and downskilling, 2) The value of awareness, 3) Talk to your friends, 4) Reflect on unsatisfactoriness and impermanence, 5) Buddhist worship not techno-worship, 6) Time away from technology.
He peppers the talk with stories, visual images and finally ends with a beautiful poem from Ryokan.
Saddharaja gives a fourth talk in his new series on Right Livelihood Practice, this time focusing on the challenging theme of work-place politics. How do we work creatively with it?
After an overview of the dramatic Tudor dynasty of the English middle ages, he identifies the unpleasant components of work place politics, namely; rivalry, power-play and status, gossip and sexual scandal, and manipulation. He contrasts this with the Buddhist Right Livelihood aims, which are the opposite. Love Mode rather than Power Mode.
Saddharaja reminds us of the six realms of existence on the Tibetan Wheel of Life, and how these realms relate to work place politics. He reminds us of what the Buddha is offering in these realms - and how this can work for us.
Finally, he suggests three further creative practices for transforming work place politics, and finishes with a poem from William Blake.
Here's another hour-long talk given at Uddiyana (the Windhorse;evolution HQ in Cambridge). It is the third of six talks on the theme of Right Livelihood. Saddharaja recounts a tourist trip into a copper and arsenic mine in Devon with his mother, and how appalling the working conditions would have been for the Victorian miners there. We learn the origins of the Cornish pasty. He expands on the terrible UK working conditions in Victorian times, e.g. children and pregnant women pulling coal trucks barefoot in mine shafts, men slogging in dangerous conditions for long hours and little pay. We learn about how Lord Shaftsbury, Robert Owen and others improved working conditions for the Victorian workforce.
Saddharaja relates all this to modern Right Livelihood and what our values are regarding working conditions in terms of: a) The Law. b) As human beings. c) As Buddhists. d) As a business. We take good working conditions for granted in the modern-day Western world.
He goes on to explore well-being issues for today's Buddhist workforce in the UK, along with the latest occupational health trends, e.g. stress, muscoskeletal disorders and chronic fatigue. He suggests that as individuals must take responsibility for our health. He suggests a two-fold approach of: a) growth and development, and b) Seeing Things As They Really Are. All this relates to the Wheel of Life and the Spiral Path, and may not be easy to do in our ever-changing, pressurised modern world.
He offers six ways we can each invest in our work-life well-being: Six Awarenesses: physical activity, perceived demand, lifestyle, food intake, body and purpose. He sees these as deep investments which will pay off in our spiritual lives in the long-term.
During the talk he gives interesting visual images and stories to illustrate his points. He finishes the talk with a reading from Tsong Khapa.
Saddharaja starts off with another story from his childhood in the 1960s about a forest fire and the effects of this upon his father, who was a forester. An example of sudden, dramatic change at work.
He moves on to talk about smaller less dramatic changes in the work place which can create anxiety for Right Livelihood workers.
He defines what 'change' means and explores the meaning of the impermanence teaching (anicca), with the help of Sangharakshita's writings on the subject.
Saddharaja then moves on to explore our struggle to accept impermanence with our workplace, our attitudes to our jobs, and even our own bodies. He looks at both reactive and creative attitudes to change.
He finally moves on to suggesting 7 Habits of Highly Effective Right Livelihood Workers, which are essentially seven practices which we can use to creatively deal with change in our working lives, and as Buddhist practitioners.
He finally finishes with Rudyard Kiplings famous poem, If.....
Throughout the talk Saddharaja uses interesting examples from history to emphasise his points, e.g. Ned Lud and The Luddites, the painter Joseph Wright of Derby, and Charles Babbage and his Difference Engine.