Why I work in a Divine Enterprise
I have been working in an Enterprise (Run and Become) for the past five years and it has definitely enhanced my spiritual life. In many ways it is easier than working with people who do not necessarily value or understand the spiritual life. That is not to say that we are the only spiritual people, or that I do not want to mix with people who are uninterested in spirituality. On the contrary, I am delighted to spend my days meeting and serving a wide variety of people. This is something I treasure deeply. However, working with spiritual seekers seems to provide a basis for mutual understanding, as we all share similar values.
My last job was as a computer programmer for a big mobile phone company. My role was to design and develop systems to help reduce paperwork in various departments. I would spend my days meeting with my "clients" in various departments, staring at my computer screen typing out endless strings of code nested within other code. I would then test it, fix it, test it, fix it again and present it back to the client. In some ways it was creative, and rewarding in the sense that it made people's jobs easier. It did mean spending a lot of time firmly and uncomfortably locked away in my mind, though. There was a lot of pressure to meet deadlines and to fix things quickly when they mysteriously went wrong.
I used to find it difficult to hold on to the spiritual nourishment I had received in my morning meditation each day. It was a bit like trying to hold water in a cup with holes in. However hard I tried to plug the holes, the water would always somehow escape. I would then literally have to escape to my car (the only quiet place I could find) and try to fill my inner vessel again!
In our Divine Enterprise we meditate together for a few minutes before we start work, and again at the end of the day. We have a small meditation room where we can go for other short meditation sessions in our break time. This is especially useful if we have had to deal with a difficult situation in the morning, and need to regain our poise for the afternoon!
I find my current job much more suited to the spiritual life. I know there are people out there who are resilient enough to balance the inner life with a high-pressure or mind-based job. I managed it for a while, but am happier now that I have made the choice not to! There was a lot of money on offer in the business I was in, and a lot of prospects, so it was hard in some ways to let that attachment go; but once it was done I never looked back. It just took a little leap of faith.
I have had many different occupations in the past, but I am most happy at Run and Become. The inner rewards have far, far outweighed the outer remuneration I may have gained in a more career-oriented job. That is not to say that my working life is always easy, or that I do not work hard. In fact I think in some ways it is more challenging, as it is more important to me than "just a job." I always feel that no effort is wasted in my working life, as I see it as an integral part of my spiritual practice.