David N. Snyder wrote:LXNDR wrote:i think the statement in the citation of OP is accurate, one can hardly succeed in both fields: spiritual and secular, so ought to make a choice and if the choice is in favor of spiritual way of life then any interest in worldly success needs to be put aside, because for the majority of ordinary people it would be a distraction
Majority, perhaps, but not all. Anathapindika and Citta and several others were rich merchants in the Buddha's time and still reached noble levels, sotapanna and even anagami. In modern times, S. N. Goenka was a successful businessman but also quite successful at teaching Dhamma and apparently very advanced in the Dhamma too.
if one feels he/she can combine the two, good for he/her, everyone decides for him/herself
David N. Snyder wrote:LXNDR wrote:and logically, if the Dhamma is meant as a way of attaining nibbana which cuts short the string of rebirths and stops becoming, why take interest in activities pertinent to what must eventually be abandoned?
Because while one is still a layman, one has responsibilities to have a Right Livelihood, to take care of oneself and their family.
to provide for a family doesn't mean to be preoccupied with worldly success and affairs, it means doing your bare minimum to keep your family comfortable
you can support your family and still be considered a loser, because you have no career, your salary isn't high, your car model is old, you don't own a house etc. etc.
David N. Snyder wrote:LXNDR wrote:wasn't Buddha himself a loser, when he left his comfortable and 'successful' life to seek liberation?
No, he was quite famous, quite the "celebrity" as people sought him out and wanted to find him, to learn from him. Even in worldly terms, this is not considered being "a loser." Winner and loser doesn't have to refer to wealth or income and in fact often refers to prestige.
it feels like you misunderstood my comment, he became a loser by the wroldly standards when he left his life as Siddhartha Gautama
speaking from an ignorant point of view (that is forgetting about kamma for a second) he might have never attained anything and tormented himself to death with austerities and there would be no sought out spiritual celebrity Gautama Buddha
for some reason he quitted the houshold life to seek liberation, so if the Buddha quitted, who are we to hope to be able to achieve anything meaningful, leading a housholder lifestyle?
many if not the majority go forth and attain next to nothing in one lifetime, because it's really difficult, so how much more difficult it must be for those distracted by other duties and activities?