Originally Posted by karaspeltz
Capitalism is against everything that Christ taught [ and Buddha]. Go back and reread the Acts of the Apostles [ and the eight-fold path of Buddhist tradition] Look at how they lived their lives sharing everything.
Originally Posted by King, Jigme Singye Wangchuck
In a response to accusations in 1987 by a journalist from UK's Financial Times that the pace of development in Bhutan was slow, the King said that "Gross National Happiness is more important than Gross National Product." This statement appears to have presaged recent findings by western economic psychologists, including 2002 Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman, that question the link between levels of income and happiness. The statement signaled his commitment to building an economy that is appropriate for Bhutan's culture, based on Buddhist spiritual values, and has served as a unifying vision for the economy. In a survey in 2005, 45 percent of Bhutanese reported being very happy, 52 percent reported being happy and only three percent reported not being happy. Based on this data, the Happy Planet Index estimates that the average level of life satisfaction in Bhutan is within the top 10 percent of nations worldwide, and certainly higher than other nations with similar levels of GDP per capita.
King Jigme Singye Wangchuck only reluctantly recently allowed television and the internet and cell phone into the country because of the concern of how this would create a feeling of inferioirity and unfillable desire for possessions. Eventually he did because he did not want to repress the freedom of the people but not without apprehension of how it could adversely effect their well-being.
I think we could also consider Costa Rica. If you judge by people's individual happiness. most ticos who have lived in the US that I have known say they were happier in Costa Rica and plan to return or have returned and are happy to be back.
My experience living on a commune opened my awareness of a materialistic delerium madness that possesses and dominates so many americans to the point of blindness to the simple joys all around. Even discussing such raises hackles of fear: "Don't threaten my possessions!"