More peace = lower living standard?

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More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Adamantus » Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:59 pm

I don't know whether this is the right forum for this or even the right website.

I feel like I'm attaining more peace in life now, mostly from learning more about myself and from doing eft (which you may have heard of). But as I attain more peace I just find myself wanting to withdraw, to work less, and to do nothing. In this world that just isn't acceptable. I need to find a job but I have no motivation or inclination to do that. What do I do? How do I persue a spiritual path and at the same time work and enjoy working? I find that all jobs contain just more haste and getting whipped by your boss all the time. I really don't want to loose what I have by working.
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Hanzze » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:45 pm

that might be interesting in this case: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=6521&start=0
_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sat Jan 15, 2011 10:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Goedert » Thu Dec 16, 2010 3:29 pm

Adamantus wrote:I don't know whether this is the right forum for this or even the right website.

I feel like I'm attaining more peace in life now, mostly from learning more about myself and from doing eft (which you may have heard of). But as I attain more peace I just find myself wanting to withdraw, to work less, and to do nothing. In this world that just isn't acceptable. I need to find a job but I have no motivation or inclination to do that. What do I do? How do I persue a spiritual path and at the same time work and enjoy working? I find that all jobs contain just more haste and getting whipped by your boss all the time. I really don't want to loose what I have by working.


There is still the self wanting confort.

Take care of there responsabilites of the household life. It is an opportunity to practice dhamma... specific the unshakeable mind... mindfullness...

In due time you will experience peace whatever you are doing. With the focus stablished in emptiness.
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby lojong1 » Thu Dec 16, 2010 7:19 pm

"Lower living standard," "..."-- eek [sour face].
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Thu Dec 16, 2010 7:54 pm

If you really want peace instead of just comfort why not go forth?
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby kirk5a » Thu Dec 16, 2010 7:58 pm

Adamantus wrote: I really don't want to loose what I have by working.

If you can lose it, how much is it really worth? Conditional peace is pretty fragile. Just about anything can upset that arrangement.
"When one thing is practiced & pursued, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises, the conceit 'I am' is abandoned, latent tendencies are uprooted, fetters are abandoned. Which one thing? Mindfulness immersed in the body." -AN 1.230
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby khlawng » Sun Dec 19, 2010 9:40 am

Adamantus wrote:I don't know whether this is the right forum for this or even the right website.

I feel like I'm attaining more peace in life now, mostly from learning more about myself and from doing eft (which you may have heard of). But as I attain more peace I just find myself wanting to withdraw, to work less, and to do nothing. In this world that just isn't acceptable. I need to find a job but I have no motivation or inclination to do that. What do I do? How do I persue a spiritual path and at the same time work and enjoy working? I find that all jobs contain just more haste and getting whipped by your boss all the time. I really don't want to loose what I have by working.


By "lower living standard", you mean not relying on materialistic means to attain a certain level or higher level of happiness, than I share the same experience as you. Having decided to walk down the path of quenching dukkha, I find more joy in living a simpler live and not constantly being pressured to accumulate useless toys to satisfy my appetite for happiness and joy. The downside is that I now find it difficult to relate to my peer's when they talk about babies, cars, houses and jobs! Its tough during festive seasons when everyone gets together and talks about their success, conquest and other things. Its tough to pretend that I care about these things although I do care about their well being and wish them well in their life all the time. Its also tough to keep trying to explain why the sudden abandoning of alcohol and its tough to explain all these without become a kill-joy during gatherings.
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Individual » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:05 am

Adamantus wrote:I don't know whether this is the right forum for this or even the right website.

I feel like I'm attaining more peace in life now, mostly from learning more about myself and from doing eft (which you may have heard of). But as I attain more peace I just find myself wanting to withdraw, to work less, and to do nothing. In this world that just isn't acceptable. I need to find a job but I have no motivation or inclination to do that. What do I do? How do I persue a spiritual path and at the same time work and enjoy working? I find that all jobs contain just more haste and getting whipped by your boss all the time. I really don't want to loose what I have by working.

You should find a cave. There you can happily live out the rest of your path of being happy all by yourself through complete withdrawal from society, while being useless to all other people.

It is good for you -- I am happy for you, genuinely happy; it truly is wonderful freedom, isn't it?

But it is superior to have that freedom without withdrawing and while still being of help to others. :)
The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:08 am

Adamantus wrote: I really don't want to loose what I have by working.


I've been through similar thought-processes, and it can be quite a dilemna. Maybe it would help to look at the options that you have, eg:
1. Don't work, ie have time/energy available for practice but this probably means you will be very poor materially speaking;
2. Investigate part-time work, ie see if a compromise is possible;
3. Explore whether there are jobs which would leave you more energy for practice;
4. Become a monk / nun.

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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:14 am

Spiny O'Norman wrote:
Adamantus wrote: I really don't want to loose what I have by working.


I've been through similar thought-processes, and it can be quite a dilemna. Maybe it would help to look at the options that you have, eg:
1. Don't work, ie have time/energy available for practice but this probably means you will be very poor materially speaking;
2. Investigate part-time work, ie see if a compromise is possible;
3. Explore whether there are jobs which would leave you more energy for practice;
4. Become a monk / nun.

Spiny
Or maybe question what it that one "has." If it so fragile that life in the real world is going to cause it go away then what do you really have? Not the wisdom found in insecurity.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Hanzze » Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:14 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sat Jan 15, 2011 10:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:52 pm

Hanzze wrote:Dear Tiltbillings,

what kind of security are you talking about?
I am not.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Viscid » Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:25 pm

There is a balance to be had between wanting too much and wanting too little. If you entertain the romantic idea of being free of material possessions and living a spiritual life yet do not have the capacity to become a monastic, you'll be living in an environment which is opposed to your beliefs. You feel alienated and distant from everything around you, and this can be quite distressful.

Unless you can become a monastic, just lead a normal, grounded life. If you don't accept and appreciate the people around you and the situation you are in then you'll always feel the need to escape, which is living in dukkha. Get a simple job, have adequate possessions, have a few good relationships, and don't cause suffering.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Dec 19, 2010 7:39 pm

I have known people on both sides of the lower living standard / higher living standard divide -- have / have-not and also I have personally been on both sides and can say that there is dukha on both sides and there can also be sukha on both sides. It is how you make it to be.

For example, some on the lower side have great cravings for more, for a day when they will be rich and full of wealth and that is "when their happiness will come" (in their minds). And then there are the wealthy who worry about losing their wealth and get suspicious of anyone getting close to them, that they must be after their wealth.

But then there are others who are content with what they have and make sukha with their life, regardless of the living standard. Some people around my wife and I ask why we don't drive a Bentley or some other expensive car. We drive a 2002 Toyota Prius and a 2010 Toyota Prius and they do the same thing a Bentley does: get you from point A to point B and on much less gas.
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby BlackBird » Sun Dec 19, 2010 9:34 pm

It doesn't matter what you do in life, whether you pursue a high paying career or work minimum wage for the rest of your life. So long as you keep meditating, remain mindful and practice the Buddha's teachings, you will always feel more peaceful and fulfilled than those who do not.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Individual » Sun Dec 19, 2010 9:39 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:I have known people on both sides of the lower living standard / higher living standard divide -- have / have-not and also I have personally been on both sides and can say that there is dukha on both sides and there can also be sukha on both sides. It is how you make it to be.

Exactly. And once you're like that, the question is different. Instead of thinking of whether it's better for me to live like this or that, you ask whether it's better for others, whether it's better for the world. :)

Until then... Dramatic changes made hastily can cause great harm. You can allow gradual changes to take place (eating less junk food, exercising more, reading more, less TV, etc.) but this doesn't mean that you should take an extreme decision, like living in a cave or rushing off to Thailand to ordain.
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby salmon » Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:54 am

Adamantus wrote:I don't know whether this is the right forum for this or even the right website.

I feel like I'm attaining more peace in life now, mostly from learning more about myself and from doing eft (which you may have heard of). But as I attain more peace I just find myself wanting to withdraw, to work less, and to do nothing. In this world that just isn't acceptable. I need to find a job but I have no motivation or inclination to do that. What do I do? How do I persue a spiritual path and at the same time work and enjoy working? I find that all jobs contain just more haste and getting whipped by your boss all the time. I really don't want to loose what I have by working.


Don't be attached to your "peaceful" life as it seems now, as even this will pass. Can you remain peaceful when the bills arrive?

PS. this is a phase that MANY meditators go through...it'll pass :)
~ swimming upstream is tough work! ~
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby Spiny O'Norman » Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:57 pm

salmon wrote: Can you remain peaceful when the bills arrive?


The greatest test of equanimity. ;)

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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby khlawng » Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:38 am

salmon wrote:PS. this is a phase that MANY meditators go through...it'll pass :)


I do suspect this is the case with many people indeed.

Any personal experience to share on what are some of the phases you guys went through and the strategies you employ to keep practicing? Personally, I went through 4 months of meditative and mindful bliss before getting all wound up in worldly matters for 6months and then coming back a little stronger in the practice the past 2 months. I am determine to keep at it this time round but have a strong suspicion that is just wishful thinking.
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Re: More peace = lower living standard?

Postby budo » Tue Dec 21, 2010 7:09 am

khlawng wrote:
salmon wrote:PS. this is a phase that MANY meditators go through...it'll pass :)


I do suspect this is the case with many people indeed.

Any personal experience to share on what are some of the phases you guys went through and the strategies you employ to keep practicing? Personally, I went through 4 months of meditative and mindful bliss before getting all wound up in worldly matters for 6months and then coming back a little stronger in the practice the past 2 months. I am determine to keep at it this time round but have a strong suspicion that is just wishful thinking.


I had a job that I was working massive overtime, 50-60 and sometimes 70 hours a week, and I very much disliked it, although I meditated everyday when I got up from bed and before I went to bed. Then I got sick, had to go to the hospital and quit my job, and finally moved back in with my parents.

Then as I was back with my parents, I had all this free time, with so much free time, I didn't know what to do, I didn't want to watch TV because I didn't want to get back into bad habit, so I started getting really really bored. I read suttas for 2-4 hours, and tried to meditate for 1-2 hours, but even then I had too much time. I not only became really bored, but really depressed, and felt like I was suffering almost as much as when I had a job! So I read some suttas regarding the layperson, and now I think, well, I AM a layperson, so I will will watch TV and I will play video games, and listen to music, and so I did and now I feel balanced and content and no longer bored. I still read the suttas for 2-4 hours and meditate for 1-3 hours. So I feel much better. Now I need to transition my bad habits to good habits, like from TV to Tennis and video games to meeting people :) Also when I get a job again, it should be a balanced and healthy job.

Nothing wrong with indulging in worldly pleasures if you are a layperson, as long as you are mindful and stay centered. Work is a VERY good thing, a lot of people hate work, but I'll tell you this, if you find the job that's right for you, maybe a simple job with no stress, and you can build some wealth while you're at it so you can enjoy some worldly pleasure then your life will be much better as a layperson. You have to keep the middle way, stay balanced, don't get a job that will take over your life, but also don't have too much free time.

I hope that helps.
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