Economics a an entirely man-made affair. Although some economists like to think of it as a science, it is not. Being created by humans it is dependent on human nature. Studying the history of economics we find that there are different ways in which the economic problem can be solved—by gifting and sharing, by exchange and by exploitation. All three of these find an expression in our daily affairs, depending upon the relationships we have with the others in the exchange.
The premise of Spiritual Economics is that human consciousness determines which method is used. The next question then is how consciousness is affected and altered to arrive at different states of being and understanding. This question is answered quite nicely by the ancient Sankhya philosophy, and the first volume of Spiritual Economics explains this relationship in detail. The key factors are known as gunas, a Sanskrit word that I define as “consciousness determinants.”
I was invited to speak at The Association of Heterodox Economists Conference, London, England July 4-6, 2013 where I explained the gunas and associated human behavior. Because it is quite impossible to present the entire concept in 30 minutes I wrote a paper for further explanation. The content of this paper is also explained on this website under the link on the main menu “Spiritual Econmics”>”Essential Background Information”. Below is the abstract that was written for the conference, and below that is the link to read or download the paper as a .pdf file.
Human Motivation and Behavior as Explained
by Sankhya Philosophy
Dhan Rousse, M.S.
Organizations are a social context created to align the activities of a number of people. Organizations do not and cannot function independently of people, although their structure provides the context for display of various values and behaviors. At the root of it all are various actors that determine the structure and context. These actors are people, human beings, who have individual values, desires, and motivations. If we want to understand the behavior of organizations we must therefore understand the behavior of people.
On one hand we find desire for status, reward, lust, envy of others, laziness, the cheating propensity, contempt of others, and so on, and at the other end of the spectrum there is honesty, responsibility, a sense of duty, sense of purpose, the common good, etc. All of these qualities are a function of consciousness.
In this paper I combine psychology, economics and the spiritual science of the Vedas to explain how individual consciousness determines desire, motivation and monetary reward. The origin of different values and influences that change them are explained in reference to what may be called “consciousness determinants.”
Sankhya philosophy is a branch of Vedic knowledge that offers an explanation of how this world functions. Stemming from an entirely different worldview its concepts are “out of the box” thinking compared to modern Western thought, thus offering unique insights that may be applied to modern problems.
The entire paper paper can be read or downloaded from the link below.