I investigate the efficacy of adopting two mental aptitudes in the financial industry: mindfulness and compassion.
A conceptual link is drawn between the powerful mental acuteness obtained from practicing Mindfulness (defined by Jon Kabat-Zinn) and Ruthless Compassion (defined by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoché) and the pursuit of a noble purpose for finance, which is to channel resources into the most deserving social and/or economic activities that raise community and societal welfare.
These techniques allow decision-makers to reach new levels of awareness, giving them a competitive advantage for instance in terms of avoiding behavioral traps. Making money remains an important by-product of financial services, but not the overriding or sole criterion. An interview of Solomon Halpern, longstanding disciple of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoché, expert in Buddhist meditation, and president of Highlander Wealth Services, illustrates how these mental tools are applied for running a small US equity fund.
The present study provides a starting point for further survey research on how these practices are becoming adopted in the industry.
This chapter is the first to analyze the impact of both ruthless compassion and mindfulness in the business of finance not only in terms of raised morality but also as an added tool to resolve informational asymetries proper to the finance business.
Faugère, C. (2016), "Applying Mindfulness and Compassion in Finance", Finance Reconsidered: New Perspectives for a Responsible and Sustainable Finance (Critical Studies on Corporate Responsibility, Governance and Sustainability, Vol. 10), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 299-319. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2043-905920160000010032
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