In my second class at IBC (http://ibc.ac.th), "Buddhism and Society", one of the required readings is an excellent collection of essays by the Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi called Facing the Future, available here: http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/facingfuture.pdf
Partway through his second essay "A Buddhist Model for Economic and Social Development" he introduces a new economic principle which he titles "The Rule of Sufficiency" which he defines as knowing that enough is enough. He further explains:
The more I think on this, the more I agree and become outraged at those who endeavor to achieve extreme wealth; wealth that they have no possible chance of utilizing in their lifetimes. For what purpose? What about the millions around the world who live in poverty? What happened to building a community and supporting one another? Sure, growing ones wealth is a guaranteed freedom in the United States and elsewhere around the world, but just because we can, doesn't mean we should.
Some recent news about billionaires starting to commit their wealth to charitable projects (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703493504576007982500939482.html?mod=djemalertNEWS) gives us a glimmer of hope, but this needs to be cultivated much more widely. As the gap between the top 20% and the bottom 20% grows and grows, our world becomes darker.
Who's with me and Venerable Bhikku Bodhi?
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