16 Aug 2010 Leave a comment
We hear a lot about the so-called protestant work ethic here in these United States. It might have powered the 18th and 19th centuries but it seemed to run out of steam by the end of the 20th. Today I'd say that Christianity supports the materialistic, gotta have-it-now culture of Cosnumerist America with drivel like the Gospel of Wealth.
I have to say that Zen has no such tendencies. In Zen minimalism is stressed. Not to an an extreme, but just enough. That concept pervades the life of most practitioners of the Buddhadharma, Zen or otherwise.
It has become such an aspect of my family's own life that the extended members of our family all think we're a little queer. We get questions like, "why don't you want a new television?"
Most of the time they just write us off as weird. My coworkers are worse always talking about the new stuff that they spent their money. I am a little jealous of the fact that they HAVE money to waste. Ours goes to bills and food.
Although my practice is still mostly informal and rather "bookish" I can say that the more I get rid of the more I have.