Millennial's and the young workforce are faced with a difficult choice of discovering alternate careers/gigs. Can spirituality, universal consciousness, meditation, environment trigger a human-plus careers?
Good householder, interested,
To trace out a good path, finding good ways, by listening and conviction in what the Buddha taught, is a very individual issue (matter of Nissaya, Upanissaya, conditions worked out with past and present deeds), like all else. That there are mostly less, very less, who encounter the Dhamma of a Sublime Buddha is very normal, but who ever goes after the highest blessings, if not yet gifted, would match the right track.
Ideas about a universal consciousness are ideas not found in the Sublime Buddhas teachings but generally the moral and ethic is on a fast decaying track currently, so actually hard for many, if even eager after right livelihood and freedom from remorse.
How ever, as individual, as the Sublime Buddha told, if it would not be possible, he wouldn't have encouraged to it, but because right conduct, leading to right livelihood is possible, the Buddha taught not only right effort, but the prerequisites and steps after it toward even highest independency and unbound.
(Note: this is not given for trade, exchange, stacks but for liberation from this wheel bond to the world)
But let me make a couple of points clear.
So long as one thinks of a career in terms of a money-making exercise and therefore looks at Buddhism, one will make a business out of it and render it extremely useless, if not harmful. Any teaching of compassion demanding money in return is not compassion at all.
But if one thinks of a career as a means to earn livelihood to live in the world, there is no problem.
Now about which career.
That is a question each should think for herself/himself. Buddhism certainly doesn't tell anyone what to do in their lives in terms of career.
One can learn from Buddhism, how to be at peace and achieve long lasting happiness and avoid all negative emotions. Buddhism really is a teaching about winnng the war within, aligning oneself with spirituality, consiousness, nature, wisdom, compassion. When one is at peace within, happy within, then career choices and the exercise of career itself will bring nothing but peace and happiness to oneself and others.
I think any career which allows one to practice the five precepts, Right Livelihood, Right Speech and Right Action (which includes the five precepts) without any obstruction, is a career that is aligned WITH Buddhism. I think we should not make lay Buddhism more complicated than it should be.
Of course, a career as a monk or nun or lay Buddhist teacher is a career IN Buddhism. That's different.
Here are the five precepts:
- I undertake the precept to refrain from destroying living creatures.
- I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given.
- I undertake the precept to refrain from sexual misconduct.
- I undertake the precept to refrain from incorrect speech.
- I undertake the precept to refrain from intoxicating drinks and drugs which lead to carelessness.
Here's a reminder of Right Livelihood from AN 5.177:
"A lay follower should not engage in five types of business. Which five? Business in weapons, business in human beings, business in meat, business in intoxicants, and business in poison."
Also from MN 117:
And what is wrong livelihood? Scheming, persuading, hinting, belittling, & pursuing gain with gain. This is wrong livelihood.
Here's a summary of Right Speech from SN 45.8:
"And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech."
Especially in view of the current corona pandemic this is a very relevant question. Clearly modern economic plans are falling apart. Even the strongest economies in the world are severely affected. It is quite possible that our denial of climate change, lack of sensitivity to all beings (not only human), exploitation of the weak by the strong, making financial profit the sole purpose of work, scant regard for spirituality etc., are a few of the many causes for this pandemic. Analyze the other possible causes/factors that have contributed to this sorry state. Use this analysis to carve out a new model, based on the advice given by the Buddha and other spiritual leaders, to create a society based on Righteousness. Ensure that this society is climate friendly and where possible close to nature, people friendly i.e. community based, measuring success not in terms of dollars made but in terms of the level of contentment achieved at all levels and work ethics that are in concert with religious ethics. With such a model, there is hope for a "New World" for the Young. Bhutan is a country that measures growth, not in terms of GDP but in terms of GDH (H for Happiness)! Yes, you can!
I am Gen Z, born in 96. The difficult choice is as it has always been--to go against the current. To cross over to the other side.
"Leaving the way of darkness, let the sage cleave to the way of light: let him leave home for the homeless life, that solitude so hard to love (Nirvāna). Putting away lust and possessing nothing, let the sage cleanse himself from every evil thought."
"Few cross over the river. Most are stranded on this side. On the riverbank they run up and down. But the wise man, following the way, Crosses over, beyond the reach of death."
I do not wish to make a living but to extinguish. There is no living to be made. Work just like everyone else, or beg just like everyone else (for food and water and shelter, to maintain the body for the purpose of the holy life.) But to think of using the dhamma as a career is sacriligious and not the dhamma (firstly, it is Wrong View.)
To think of a career or of money while thinking of the dhamma is to not understand the dhamma. It is not about ideas or intelectual stimulation, its an actual practice, and the practice literally consists in going ALL IN, in being a recluse, a meditator, a mendicant, a hermit, owning nothing, eating once a day, spending the days in open air. Its a practice based on unbinding, detachment, dispassion. This is the path. Out of compassion it has been clearly expressed to us by the Blessed One. It is explained in full, with little to no contradiction. There are thousands of acounts of monks who following the path have achieved true fufilment and complete wisdom and happiness. This being the case, Do with the dhamma as you see fit, you own your actions and your thoughts--your fate depends on these.
The reply above says "That is a question each should think for herself/himself. Buddhism certainly doesn't tell anyone what to do in their lives in terms of career." Buddhisms main teaching is the Eightfold Path. It is the entirety of the path. It starts and ends with the 8fold path. The Eightfold Path consists of Right Livelihood. This is extremely important.
If this comes off as antagonistic, please dont think of it as such. I am very nice. It just that when writing you dont hear tone of voice, expression, facial gestures, etc. Much love.