One of our Beliefnet readers wrote in last week expressing her concern
about the amount of money that today’s spiritual leaders and Guru’s
seem to make today. Here’s what she said:
“I am a bit disillusioned by the apparent amount of money that is made
by many people who are experts on different aspects of spirituality. I
am interested in finding out what people think. I don’t want to be too
judgmental; I realize that everyone needs to make a living. It seems
like there is good reason that throughout the ages most very spiritual
people have taken some type of vow of poverty. That does not seem to
be popular these days. I think everyone deserves to live a comfortable
lifestyle. However, is it ethical to make a lot of money, especially
if you are an expert on an ancient spiritual tradition?” (read more….)
So, what do you think…is it okay that the great spiritual teachers and Guru’s of our time
are getting wealthy by their flock? I admit I’ve struggled with this question myself and have found some peace in the answers that I arrived at through the course of my own reflection.
It’s okay that the Deepak Chopra’s of the world have become enormously
successful through their teachings and message. Many of these spiritual
teachers have had a tremendously positive impact on the world and have
helped ease the pain and suffering of many through their work and
efforts. While we cannot easily put a price tag on the value of this
to humanity, their contribution has been great. Those who chosen to
show up and share their wisdom and knowledge with us very much deserve
to be rewarded for doing so.
While I am not personally a fan of the Guru model, I do believe those
who are committed to spiritually supporting and enriching the lives of
others should be able to receive riches in return. These teachers also provide a powerful model of how through harvesting the gold that is
within us, that we too, can manifest in the material world. This is all of our
So, the question then becomes what great treasure lies within
us that through doing our own spiritual work and living intentionally and purposely, can we learn to become better manifestor’s ourselves?
On the other hand, I do believe that we could all learn to be more conscious with what we do have and find better ways of distributing the world’s wealth. But more on that subject later…
Here’s a blessing for today:
At this very moment, for the peoples and the nations of the earth,
May not even the names disease, war, famine, and suffering be heard.
Rather may their moral conduct, merit, wealth, and prosperity increase,
and may good fortune and well-being always arise for them.
~ Kyabje Dudjom Rinpoche