OK, I’ve decided not to write up my visit to Windhorse Trading as I don’t have enough of a journalistic angle on it, and the trail has gone cold. It’s a Buddhist warehouse business on the outskirts of Cambridge which I had a tour of a couple of weeks ago.
I am interested in it because it is a different form of ethical business. The ethics here comes direct from religious need and experience; in many ways the place is more of a monastry than part of the capitalist system. There are no laws to the ethics of Windhorse, instead they have belief which informs the taking of right-action in the world.
It’s interesting that despite this different basis the ethics of Windhorse (and their shops branded Evolution, such as the one on Fitzroy Street in Cambridge) overlap with those of fair trade, which charities like Oxfam promote. The CEO of Windhorse has recently talked to Oxfam; they were surprised/pleased at this common ground, and perhaps something will come of it.
One other interesting thing, the distraction of sex. Windhorse staff are segregated by gender, the women work upstairs in finance, and in the shops. The men work downstairs on sales, and in the warehouse on picking and packing. This is because sex distracts from what they say you are really meant to be concentratingon; that is the contemplation of the awe of life, and the meditation that leads to enlightenment.
Sounds like Creature Labs to me. Except only Pete Waudby became enlightened, and I have no evidence that the lack of girls assisted.