The reactions I get when I tell people that I did an interdisciplinary Master’s degree in Buddhism and business studies are very telling. Once people have stopped laughing or spluttering incoherently, they usually say that they’d assumed that Buddhism and business were mutually exclusive. But in fact the concept of “right livelihood” is part of the Buddha’s core teaching, the Eightfold Path.
In Buddhist practice we’re encouraged to make every aspect of our lives an opportunity to practice mindfulness, compassion, balance, and insight. Since we all have to earn a living, our work needs to become part of our practice.
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Jenny Chapman, Cambridge News: He is happy and contented. He is the managing director of a company turning over £11m and his salary is £15,000.
“I live simply, it’s all I need,” says Mike Silver, 49, who heads a team of 250, around 90 at the Windhorse headquarters off Coldhams Lane in Cambridge.
Windhorse, which is a wholesaler of gifts and housewares, started in London’s Bethnal Green in 1980 and has always been a Buddhist organisation.
“We moved to Cambridge to grow and to start Buddhist activities in Cambridge,” says Mike, who joined Windhorse 27 years ago, straight from an economics degree at Manchester.
The Windhorse Buddhists…