INTERPRETING “RIGHT LIVELIHOOD”: UNDERSTANDING AND
PRACTICE IN CONTEMPORARY THAILAND
Nissara Horayangura, Independent Researcher, Thailand
The practice of Right Livelihood is a crucial aspect of the Buddhist
spiritual path in that it
connects inner transformation with external transformation at both the
individual and social levels.
Using case studies of eight seriously committed Buddhist practitioners
in Bangkok, this paper examines
different ways of interpreting “Right Livelihood,” both in
understanding and in actual practice. The
research shows that contemporary lay practitioners are re-interpreting
“Right Livelihood” in innovative
ways to suit modern realities and are taking pro-active steps to
fashion a work lifestyle that supports
their spiritual self-development and promotes service to others.
However, broader interpretations of
“Right Livelihood” that reflect a deeper understanding of how
livelihood relates to the larger socio-
economic system can still be further developed.