The 6 Ways of Squandering Wealth – The Buddha in the Sigalovada Sutta

You need to avoid squandering your wealth in 6 ways:

  1. Heedlessness caused by intoxication
  2. Roaming the streets at inappropriate times
  3. Habitual partying
  4. Compulsive gambling
  5. Bad companions
  6. Laziness

There are 6 dangers to each of these 6

1. Intoxication Dangers – Heedlessness from Drugs and Alcohol

What are the 6 dangers inherent in Heedlessness caused by intoxication?

This means drinking alcohol and taking illicit drugs – you lose your mindfulness – so you end up doing stupid things!

  1. Loss of immediate wealth – so you waste all your money trying to get a hit or a fix. You hear about see druggies and junkies resorting to theft to buy drugs from the drug dealer in order to get high. They are no longer in mastery of themselves – the drugs are.
  2. Increased quarreling – this is true. Alcoholics tend to abuse their spouses and they argue and fight. One guy I was talking to once found marijuana in his house from his wife – and he confronted his partner because he didn’t want that stuff around the children – so they argued! It’s cos people have to find an excuse to defend their illicit drug taking – that’s why arguments ensue.
  3. Susceptibility to illness – if you take drugs, you can get different types of problems depending on the type of drug. Alcoholics for example can get cirrhosis of the liver and Wernieke Korsakoff’s syndrome – where their brain shrinks and shrivels away because of the alcohol. Some drugs can give you mental illnesses – someone told me that they took ICE and then started hearing voices. Once they stopped the ICE, the voices stopped. If you take heroin and share and use re-used needles, you’re almost bound to catch Hepatitis C!
  4. Disrepute – people will think, “Oh he’s an alcoholic!” or “He’s a druggie!” or “She’s a junkie!” and people will look down on you.
  5. Indecent Exposure – we’ve probably seen the pictures on the internet where people are so drunk or intoxicated that they start exposing themselves.
  6. Weakened insight – you lose your mindfulness when you’re taking intoxicants. Buddhism is about mindfulness and wisdom – not about being intoxicated – not about being a drunkard, or a junkie!

2. Staying out late dangers

What are the 6 dangers inherent in roaming the streets at inappropriate times?

  1. You are left unguarded and unprotected
  2. Your family is left unguarded and unprotected
  3. Your property is left unguarded and unprotected
  4. You are suspected of doing something wrong – you get home and your spouse confronts you, “Where have you been all night?!” even if you’ve done nothing wrong.
  5. Then rumors spread about what you were up to
  6. You are subjected to many miseries

3. Habitual Partying Dangers

What are the 6 dangers inherent in habitual partying?

You are always wanting to find:

  1. Where’s the dancing?
  2. Where’s the singing?
  3. Where’s the music?
  4. Where are the stories?
  5. Where’s the applause?
  6. Where’s the drumming?

These days, it’s clubbing and raves – where all of these things are found. So people’s minds are pre-occupied with these things. I spoke to a young man who used smuggle drugs into these raves and clubs – but he didn’t do it – he got young girls to do it. But he saw the error of his ways and now is back on the straight and narrow and helping youths not do what he used to do. So drugs and alcohol are present at clubs and raves – and so is sleeping around – so it’s easy to do stupid things that you later regret and even catch some STD’s or accidentally have a girl get pregnant.

4. Gambling Dangers

What are the 6 dangers inherent in compulsive gambling?

  1. If you win – others resent you
  2. If you lose – you’re ticked off that you lost money
  3. You lose your savings – some people lose even their house and life savings – cos they lose – then want to win it back instantly on the next bet, so they bet bigger – but instead of winning – they lose bigger! Always remember this – the house always wins. Otherwise, how do you think all these clubs and Casinos can afford to run the place and pay all of their staff?! With the money that people have lost of course! A girl who worked at a large club told me that just 1 Poker machine takes in ~$45,000 US per night – that’s enough to pay 1 or 2 staff for a whole year! Now multiply that by 50 or 100 poker machines per club – and you will see that the amount of money that people lose every single night is staggering! As for gambling in general – I know of a couple who got divorced because the husband couldn’t stop his gambling habit and so they had to sell off their house. I have also heard of people being chased for the debts that they lost in gambling – so much so that they had to move far, far away – you don’t need this kind of stress in your life!
  4. Your words lose weight in public – cos you’re a gambler
  5. Friends and colleagues will lose respect for you
  6. Girls (and guys) will not seek you out for marriage – because gamblers can’t support a family

5. Bad Companions Dangers

What are the 6 dangers inherent in bad companionship?

These 6 types of bad companions become your friend and colleague:

  1. A rogue
  2. A drunkard
  3. A drug addict
  4. A cheat
  5. A swindler
  6. A thug

Then if these people get embroiled in problems of their own creation – they try to pull you in to their mess – drag you down with them! Which could affect your reputation and even ruin the relationships with your family and friends.

There was an alcoholic that I knew – a family tried to help him out by helping him stop drinking and get him back on the straight an narrow – but he ended up destroying their family instead and he ended up going to jail. So it’s not easy to change these people – and you yourself might be changed for the worse – as you were biting off more than you could chew! Don’t try to be a hero and stay away from these sorts of characters.

Now how do you know that someone is a a cheat or a swindler? It may not be easily apparent at first, as they can be very friendly to your face and you think, “Wow, this guy is so nice!” or “She’s such a sweety!” But these people may just be softening you up with their sweet talk – and charming you – and you won’t have a clue that you were just being used! You were just lapping up all their charm and the flattery that they gave you! So you need to maybe be around them for a while or chat to people who’ve known them for a while – and then, observe how they act – not what they say (cos talk is cheap) – especially when they think their supervisor is not around.

6. Laziness Dangers

What are the 6 dangers inherent in laziness?

They have all sorts of excuses for not working – so their wealth doesn’t accrue and their existing wealth goes to waste. What excuses?

  1. It’s too cold
  2. It’s too hot
  3. It’s too late
  4. It’s too early
  5. I’m too hungry
  6. I’m too full

For the entire Sutta: https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/dn/dn.31.0.ksw0.html

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