“The Culture Of Prosperity Deadens Us”

Pope Francis warns us that “the culture of prosperity deadens us” and we fail to see the suffering of people who lack opportunities Pope Francisand live stunted lives. This is totally aligned with Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh‘s teachings on mindful consumption.

These teachings say that we are a society addicted to consumption. We think the we live on a planet with unlimited resources and don’t even take into account the devastation to our environment. Thich Nhat Hanh, known as Thay by his followers, tells us that we are not separate from the environment. We are the environment and the environment is us.

Thay also teaches that if the West stops drinking alcohol by 50%, we could feed the world. Also, the mindless destruction of the rain forests for the sake of raising cattle for meat consumpti0n is a major contributor to the destruction of the environment. This is because of the reduction of oxygen produced by the trees in the rain forest and also the increase in carbon dioxide and nitrogen in the atmosphere from the waste products of the animals.

Pope Frances is equally alarmed. Daniel Gross reported on the Daily Beast,

Popes have never been big fans of Darwinism. This Pope takes direct aim at economic Darwinism. “Today everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed upon the powerless,” he wrote. Francis has little use for those who argue that cutting taxes for the rich helps the poor. “Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world,” he said in a mini-rant that wouldn’t be out-of-place on MSNBC. “This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system.” [Read More…]

I have to say that I admire Pope Francis for his extraordinary views on capitalism and poverty. I think it is about time that someone with influence over millions of people came out against capitalists and consumers alike. He also said,

The culture of prosperity deadens us; we are thrilled if the market offers us something new to purchase. In the meantime all those lives stunted for lack of opportunity seem a mere spectacle; they fail to move us.

This is evidence of his concern about mindful consumption.

So, with this in mind, how will you spend your time today on Black Friday? Will you be in the malls, spending money, or will you be in a soup kitchen helping the poor and underprivileged?

Connect with Meditation Practices

Connect with

Or enter your name and email address below.