Dear venerable, I have a meditation room in my factory for the employees to chant and meditate. Do you have any method to make them more interested in Dhamma than the present time?
by Venerable Dhattajeevo Bhikku
Actually, it doesn’t happen to only our employees, but also our own children. When the children are asked to meditate, to chant or to listen to sermons, they don’t really want to do. Or even ourselves, sometimes we are also lazy. I’d like to rejoice in your merit that you care about your employees as if they were your own descendants because presently, people care more about money than virtue, and they don’t really care about minds. But you think about virtue and minds of the employees. I’d like to rejoice in this merit.
Then, our employees, no matter if they are children or grown-ups, are under our control. With their age, they might be grown-ups, but mostly their virtue and skill are still not as good as us, that’s why they become our employees; therefore, they actually still lack of Dhamma. This is the point that they are in need of models. When you are done with your work; nonetheless, you need to be their meditation leader.
To say easily, the world is missing good models. You need to be their model in meditation. Since you already have a meditation room, when the time comes, you should call them to chant and meditate with you. Tell them to purify and relax their minds, so that they will go home with bright faces and smiles for their families because their families have been waiting for them the whole day. They need a model for these things.
The second thing that you really need to do is teaching them to be aware of the value of merit because with their own wits they might know only the value of work that give them money, but they don’t know about the value of merit. You need to teach them that people are skillful from their practice in technique and skill, but to have good heart, happiness and prosperity, merit is needed to be the strength of their minds.
Hence, you need to lead them in doing good deeds, like food offerings to monks, Kathina ceremony participation, yellow robe offerings, meal offerings to monks or public charity participation. Once they see the value of Dhamma that you lead them to practice and the value of merit that you lead them to do, they will be deeply impressed in your kind heart and that you do not take advantage of them, and even hold them as your own descendants. From this point, they will trust you and they will be inspired to meditate after you, so that your meditation room will not be empty.
However, they still lack of knowledge about Dhamma, and virtue; therefore, you, other than asking them to meditate, need to train them regularly. How and when? Since your employees have been working with you for tens of years, I’d like you give them paychecks on every payday by yourself. If you cannot do that to every employee, you should at least do that to the headmen of the employees, also you need to teach them to know the value of money, the correct way to spend money, to divide some money for making merit and serving their parents and ancestors for their favour.
These things will teach our employees the responsibility to themselves, to their economy and to their family. When they are responsible, their families will be automatically peaceful, their children and their spouses will be nice. This will bring peace to their families and bring Dhamma to their minds along what you lead them. So you should be their model of goodness in the factory.
When they come home and see that their children and their spouses are nice, then they will be models of merit and Dhamma just like you within their families. When this happens, no matter how often you ask them to meditate; they will be totally pleased to do it.
Also, you need to be the mother of the whole factory because they are not only your employees, but children. You are their mother and they are your children. You pay them for their labor, and feed them Dhamma as a mother. Feed them Dhamma and merit, and then they will be your nice employees.