The Diamond Cutter: The Buddha on Strategies for Managing Your Business and Your Life

Overview

With a unique combination of ancient and contemporary wisdom from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, The Diamond Cutter presents readers with empowering strategies for success in their work and personal lives.

Geshe Michael Roach, one of the great teachers today of Tibetan Buddhism, has richly woven The Diamond Cutter in three layers. The first is a translation of selections from the Diamond Sutra itself, an ancient text comprised of ...

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Overview

With a unique combination of ancient and contemporary wisdom from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, The Diamond Cutter presents readers with empowering strategies for success in their work and personal lives.

Geshe Michael Roach, one of the great teachers today of Tibetan Buddhism, has richly woven The Diamond Cutter in three layers. The first is a translation of selections from the Diamond Sutra itself, an ancient text comprised of conversations between the Buddha and his close disciple Subhuti. Considered a central work by Buddhists throughout the world, the Diamond Sutra has been the focus of much interpretation over the centuries. In the second layer, Geshe Michael quotes from some of the best commentaries of the Tibetan tradition. In the main text, the third layer, he uses both sutra and commentary as a jumping-off point for presenting his own teaching.

Geshe Michael gives fresh insight into ancient wisdom by using examples from his own experience as one of the founders of the Andin International Diamond Corporation, which was started with capital of fifty thousand dollars and which today has annual sales in excess of one hundred million dollars. Much of the success of Andin has come from applying the business strategies presented in The Diamond Cutter. Geshe Michael's easy style and spiritual understanding make this work of timeless wisdom an invaluable source for those already familiar with, and those unfamiliar with, Tibetan Buddhism.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the vein of Richard D. Phillips's The Heart of an Executive: Lessons on Leadership from the Life of King David, this book offers a practical application of Buddhist teachings to managing business and life. A Buddhist monk and former diamond district executive, Roach says that the three Buddhist-inspired principles on which he built his success can be applied to other businesses and other circumstances. The principles stipulate that businesses should be profitable, that we should enjoy the money we earn, not working ourselves so hard earning it that we can't enjoy the nice home or relaxing trip it might provide, and that we should be able to claim, when all is said and done, that our years in business were meaningful. "To summarize," writes Roach, "the goal of business, and of ancient Tibetan wisdom... is to enrich ourselves." Roach's uncritical tendency to marry Buddhism and capitalism without so much as a raised eyebrow might give readers pause. (In the end, Roach redeems himself a little by suggesting that the Buddhist teachings of Limitlessness imply that everyone could have enough wealth.) The principles he propounds are appealing, indeed, but they tell us much more about current-day attitudes toward work and money than they do about "ancient Tibetan wisdom." Entrepreneurs seeking solid advice for worldly success may find this book helpful, but those interested in Tibetan Buddhism will likely consider it superficial. (Feb.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385497909
  • Publisher: Doubleday Publishing
  • Publication date: 2/15/2000
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.96 (w) x 9.52 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Roach is a fully ordained Buddhist monk who received his geshe (master of Buddhism) degree from Sera Mey Tibetan Monastery after twenty-two years of study. A teacher of Buddhism since 1981, he is also a scholar of Sanskrit, Tibetan, and Russian, and has translated numerous works. Geshe Michael received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University and worked in New York City as a director of a large diamond firm for many years. He founded and directs the Asian Classics Institute, as well as the Asian Classics Input Project, and has been active in the restoration of Sera Mey Monastery. He lives in New York City.

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Read an Excerpt

This book is the story of how I built the Diamond Division at Andin International, using principles culled from the ancient wisdom of Buddhism, from nothing into a worldwide operation generating many millions of dollars per year.  I did not do so alone, nor were my views the only ones we followed , but I can say that the majority of the decisions and policies in our division during my tenure as vice president were driven by the principles you will find in this book.

What, in a nutshell, are these principles?  We can divide them into three.

The first principle is that the business should be successful: that it should make money.  There is a belief prevalent in America and othe Western countries that being successful, making money, is somehow wrong for people trying to lead a spiritual life.  In Buddhism though it is not the money which is in itself wrong; in fact, a person with greater resources can do mcuh more good in the world than one without.  The question rather is how we make the money; whether we understand where it comes from and how to make it continue to come, and whether we keep a healthy attitude about the money.

The whole point is to make the money in a clean an honest way, to understand clearly where it comes from so it doesn't stop, and to maintain a healthy view toward it while we have it.  As long as we do these things, making money is completely consistent with a spiritual way of life; in fact, it becomes a part of a spiritual way of life.

The second principle is that we should enjoy the money; that is we should learn how to keep our minds and bodies ingood health while we make the money.  The activity of creating wealth should not exhaust us so much physically or mentally that we cannot enjoy the wealth.  A business-person who ruins his health doing business is defeating the very purpose of the business.

The third principle is that you should be able to look back at your business, at the end, and honestly say that your years of doing business have had some meaning.  The end of every business enterprise we engage in, and in fact the end of our lives, must come to every person who ever does business.  And at the most  important part of business -- at  the end, when we are looking back on all we have achieved -- we should see that we have conducted ourselves and our business in a way that had some lasting meaning, that left some good mark in our world.

To summarize, the goal of business, and of ancient Tibetan wisdom, and in fact of all human endeavor, is to enrich ourselves -- to achieve prosperity, both outer and inner.  We can enjoy this prosperity only if we maintain a high degree of physical and mental health.  And over the length of our lives we must seek ways to make this prosperity meaningful in a larger sense.

This is the lesson of what we accomplished in the Diamond Division of Andin International, and it is a lesson which can be learned and applied by anyone, whatever his or her background or beliefs.

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2004

    The whole world should be given a copy!

    What always amazes me about Gueshe Michael is his natural way of explaining very complex concepts in a very simple way. This book is a perfect example of it and its applications are everything one needs to turn a business around. It uses very simple logic, something that regular business books don't do. He explains why the same business strategy works for some and not for others. And it works! I also recommend the Enlightened Business Institute's talks for those who want to incorporate logic and wonderful ethics into their everyday business.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2002

    An illuminating work

    Geshe Michael Roach does two great things in this book. He describes Buddhist thinking and philosophy in an amazingly clear, concise and entertaining way. Secondly, he makes it relevant to daily personal living. Either one would be an accomplishment. I have already begun to change and bring a stronger focus to all my work. This is the only book I have, besides the Bible, that I'll read again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2000

    Want REAL Success? Read The Diamond Cutter!

    Ever wonder why, on the very same day, in the very same market, at exactly the same time, three businesspersons can reap three distinctly different set of results? Ever wonder why, no matter what kind of work you do, there is always tension and conflict everywhere? Ever wonder why, after 20 or more years in the corporation, everyone seems so very old, sick, and tired, unable to really enjoy the fruits of hard-earned retirement? Books for managing your business and life come and go like fierflies in mid-June. It seems every season features a new 'fad' approach to success in work and life. But no more; there is now a book that will teach you how to really succeed, simply by getting beyond the 'how' of the events that are our reality to the 'why.' In The Diamond Cutter, Geshe Michael Roach explains how to apply the wisdom of the ancient Indian and Tibetan Buddhist to understand how the world works, in essence adopting an entirely new 'worldview,' almost the antithesis of the prevailing view of reality that permeates life and work in the West. To most Western businesspersons, in fact to most Westerners generally, the ideas in this bok will be strange and unfamiliar, yet they will resonate with an inescapable truth that will compel and lure the seeker of peace and happiness, regardless of one's occupation or vocation. See what it takes to really be happy at work. See what it takes to be successful in life. Read Geshe Michael Roach's 'The Diamond Cutter.'

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