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The Diamond Cutter: The Buddha On Managing Your Business And Your Life

3.99 of 5 stars 3.99  ·  rating details  ·  564 ratings  ·  67 reviews
The now classic work on Buddhism and business from the foremost American teacher of Tibetan Buddhism— reissued in a tenth anniversary edition with compelling case studies that showcase its principles in action around the globe.

With a unique combination of ancient and contemporary wisdom from Tibetan Buddhism, THE DIAMOND CUTTER presents readers with empowering strategies f
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Paperback, 240 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Doubleday (first published 2000)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,192)
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Mo Tipton
I'm having a really, really hard time overlooking the fact that Roach works in the diamond industry, and I'm nearly halfway through the book and he hasn't once mentioned the godawful history (and present-day atrocities) associated with diamond mining and transport.

But I'm trying very hard to focus on the spiritual message instead, because it is truly profound. Honestly, this is one of those books that is stretching my preconceived notions of "how the world works" near to the breaking point, and
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Michael

A DIFFICULT BOOK TO RECOMMEND, but despite the flaws, it is worth reading. Some of the ideas are excellent, Roach is scholarly and has a real gift for teaching, but I think some of his views, like Roach himself, are controversial. Read this book by all means, but keep in mind Roach is NOT a mainstream Buddhist teacher. In fact, I would read Thich Nhat Hanh's "Diamond Sutra: The Diamond that Cuts Through Illusion" before even touching this one.
I understand Buddhism has had to adapt to whatever c
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John
May 10, 2011 John added it
This is some profound stuff. Roach is talking about why things happen; what really causes effects. But he's most interested in knowing why they happen and then applying that knowledge to get certain outcomes, like the outcome of turning his $50,000 loan into a $100 million business (now $200M+). And he wonderfully and seamlessly integrates pretty mind-bending theory (mind-bending to most westerners) with application methods and examples.

pg 28 - 29
"The business world today is without question a v
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Debs
I had been having conversations with a friend around survival strategies in a not-so-nurturing corporate environment and he recommended this book. It is well, well-worth reading.

Thinking back to other things I've read and even basic psych class, many of these concepts weren't new. They represent such a shift away from my normal paradigm that seeing them presented over again in a slightly different framework is very valuable.

Accessibility is key. Their format of stating the original text, then
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Viet Hung Nguyen
Dấu ấn: Tất cả những gì đang xảy ra ở hiện tại chỉ là kết quả của những dấu ấn đã được gieo trong quá khứ. Chúng ta không thể quay trờ về quá khứ để có thể thay đổi các dấu ấn này. Nhưng chúng ta chắc chắn có một sự tự do lựa chọn để gieo các dấu ấn trong hiện tại, để tạo ra các kết quả trong tương lai. Một dấu ấn tích cực chắc chắn sẽ dẫn đến một tương lai tích cực. Một dấu ấn tiêu cực sẽ chỉ đem lại một kết quả tiêu cực. Lựa chọn nào chính là quyết định ở nơi bạn, ngay tại thời điểm này, trong ...more
Colleen Wainwright
A lot of translations of ancient spiritual texts are about as useful to read for modern Westerners as reading them in the original. This book does a great job of translating the wildly allegorical to the concrete and actionable, so thumbs-up for that. It's also quite detailed: many, many pages, with very, very small type.

While I found it fascinating to see how these ancient texts were applicable today, I had two major problems with the book. First, DIAMONDS. We all know too much about the proce
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Amy Boogie King
I'm on the last chapter. I'm not new to the Buddhist ideas and it's repetitious from other texts. This is what happens when you read a bunch of Buddhist stuff. It's good, though, it's what gets the ideas planted in your head.

My only problem with this is that it's executive driven. I feel a little lost business wise in it. Like anything though "take what you need and leave the rest" comes to mind. This is what I'm practicing with this book. I hope to finish it soon and will leave behind the "busi
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Victor Ooi
The Diamond Cutter: The Buddha On Managing Your Business and Your Life, by Michael Roach is a very interesting book, venturing deep into the core beliefs of Buddhism and how it relates to daily lives. In this book, Michael talks about his experiences and what Buddhist ideas have to do with them. Throughout his life, Michael was searching for a career, and found out that he would work in the diamond business. After he graduated from university, he went to a diamond cutting business and studied i ...more
R
Apr 15, 2014 R rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: wisdom
I couldn't finish this. I tried. When the alarm bells started ringing in my head, I desperately tried to understand what others loved about it and if I was just missing something. In the end, I just ended up going, "...WHAT?" at the pages a lot.

The Pros: The details about the diamond trade were interesting, though I agree with other reviewers that they often went too long to act as examples and instead frequently wobbled over the line into self-indulgent storytelling. The advice, as mentioned ab
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Bayarmaa
шашны холбогдолтой ном уншиж байсаан. гэхдээ миний мэргэжил санхүүтэй холбоотой болохоор очир огтлогчийг сонирхон уншиж эхэлсэн юм. Би өөрөө шашингүй хүн л дээ төдийлэн амьдралтайгаа холбож үздэггүй. Энэ номыг яг долоо хоног уншихад миний тархи бараг угаагдчихсан, хийж буй үйл ажиллагаа бүрийг буддагийн үндсэн филисофитэй холбон авч үзнэ. Хүнд өгж буй мөнгөө хүртэл сайн санаж өгөх хэрэгтэй, ашиг олох гэж биш сайн санаж л мөнгө оловол эргээд үйлийн үр нь чамд ашиг болон хувирна. Олон ийм төрлийн ...more
Lorraine
This is the 10th anniversary edition of this book, and it makes me wonder why I haven't heard of it before. I am giving it a five-star rating based on business books I have read. And I have read a lot. I do think one can and should read it over and over again in order to adapt the principles set forth. It reminds me of THE 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE. There is no way one could read the book once and fully comprehend it. It has to be read and it has to be practiced.

Though this book is wri
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Jessica Lu
The book is about how Buddhism can be applied in business operations and for personal happiness. It answers my long lasting question: how one can work for and enjoy material life, and at the same time, search for spiritual pious path - It is possible and simple. The book is a very interesting read and definitely a life-long concept implementation project for me.

The concepts are based on text of an ancient Buddhism sutra “Diamond Sutra”. Diamond is the hardest thing on earth due to its perfect ba
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Scott
A mentor gave me this book, fully aware I have no interest in making lots of money or learning business management techniques. Begrudginly, I read it. It is not a particularly well-written book, and I feel it could have been much shorter and conveyed the same information. I found some of the Buddhist principles elaborated upon in it to be quite interesting and useful in offering me another perspective on how to interpret the world and events around me. In the end, I'm glad I read it.
Shasta McBride
Jun 17, 2011 Shasta McBride rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Shasta by: Demian
Actually an engrossing true story about how an American monk living in Tibet is told by his teacher to go back to the US and become a businessman. He soon enters the Diamond trade in Manhattan and grows from a tiny shop to a multimillion-dollar company. However, the unique world of the diamond industry is only the backdrop for the actual story here, which is a translation of the 2,000 year-old Sutra "The Diamond Cutter" written by Gautama Buddha, which is a sutra that holds a very strong lesson. ...more
Scott Russell
The book could be a bit more tightly written but the message of how one's personal karma affects one's business relationships is incredibly insightful. Michael Roach's description of his experiment managing a division of a company by adhering to his Buddhist principles is a wonderfully enlightening experiment with provocative results every business leader should understand and emulate.
skye
Thanks to neighbor Chris for the loan. I liked this book. I really enjoyed the stories from business, and learning about the inside of the diamond business at all levels. Pretty cool how much there is behind the scenes. I also liked a lot of the Tibetan Buddhist principles explained.

I wasn't persuaded by the core idea that everything that happens is based on mental imprints from our previous actions. It's an interesting version of karma, and may be the traditional Tibetan Buddhist view, but did
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Dvir Oren
unique angle about business from a geshe (Tibetan Buddhism degree if I got it right).
favorite point is visualize yourself as successful right in the morning. Nice!

the diamond cutter
A business should help people achieve prosperity
Intensity and perseverance produce results
Nothing has meaning outside of that we give it
visualize yourself as most successful and wise you can be every morning
Monique De klonia
een aanrader!!! ik vind het een leuk boek om te lezen. vooral hoe het er in de diamantwereld aan toe gaat. soms heb ik wat moeite met de boeddhistische zienswijze en soms is dat juist heel interessant om over na te denken. ik heb het boek al eerder gelezen en vond het toen ook erg interessant. maar wel andere dingen.
Wade Brooks
A great look at business ethics and their effects through a Buddhist lens. A number of fantastic principles are discussed as well as interesting facts about the diamond businesses.
Raoul Schmidiger
Read it. Explains Cause and Effect aka Karma hands on. Usually we say: "That's Karma, nothing to do about it". This book shows you how to change your world by doing the right things.
Annette Abbott
Very readable and, in fact, very good. I think my problem with this book is more about me than the book itself. I discovered Buddhism when I lived overseas in the 80s - the age of "greed is good." I found that lifestyle (work, greed, money, excess) to be so shallow and happened upon Buddhism while in Thailand. Don't get me wrong, I think working hard in business is good. And I always strive for success. But I don't think money/fame/success are everything and Buddhism helped me shift my prioritie ...more
Maiga Milbourne
This is a potentially useful book but there were a few fundamental pieces that troubled me. Roach is a spiritual teacher and as much as this initially appears to be a management self-help book, it has higher aspirations. I appreciate Roach's intention but he gained business insight in the diamond industry. He uses that experience to explain ways to live morally in capitalist business culture. The diamond industry. The same diamond industry that has such a bloody and devastating history globally. ...more
Chris
I am no expert on Buddhism, but their seem to be good ideas, but no secrets revealed, in this book. What I really liked about it were some of the applications to daily work and life relationships. It was a good book for me to read right now, helped me with some imperfect work situations, but I cannot say this is a must read. And then there is the basic question about awareness vs. business acumen. The author has these good personal ideas, but never mentions the demons of the diamond industry. Ca ...more
Ben Nathan
In a few words this book can change the way you approach life and business!
Mish Middelmann
What I loved: deep, powerful, simple wisdom about life, dished up in very accessible language. My second reading of the book this year has guided really important changes for me - about how I live my gratitude for my blessings.

What stopped it from getting 5 stars for me: a certain glibness, maybe intended to serve his business audience, but for me it detracts from his message. There seems to be some underlying assumption that we are all really just out to get rich.
Daryl King


At first glance this might look like simple Law Of Attraction/Cosmic Ordering stuff, but it's much deeper than that. The explanation of what Karma means is a powerful one that merits careful reading and re-reading. Even if you don't agree with the philosophy, the practices in section 2 concerning making space for stillness are worth trying. I'm certain you'll find they make a difference to your thinking and your capacity to be with difficulty.
Sean Howard
Okay...

This is an extremely bizarre book. I found the endless list of "faults" and the proposed solutions tedious reading at best.

And yet I have been tremendously affected.

So I have no idea how to write up a review of this book. I think it will remain on my recommended list but with a caveat that reading this book is difficult and the EASY part of the equation. It urges the reader on a daily journey of becoming who we desire and need to be.
Sean Quinn
I really enjoyed this book as it related Buddhist concepts to the modern man, living in the business world. There were some pretty important concepts that really resonated with me here, and ideas that I can apply to my life almost immediately. To get a quick recap "cliff notes" version of the book, I recommend watching the Philosophers Notes review by Brian Johnson. Great stuff!
Steve
My main objection is that the lesson of the book is "be kind to people so good things will happen to you," and I'm not sure if intent doesn't play a role in these sorts of things.

Actually, the most interesting part of the book is the insight into NYC's diamond industry, which is still pretty old fashioned and doesn't seem to have changed very much in decades.
Brian
I'm one of those for whom this book may or may not have been designed. I am fiercely anti-capitalist and tend to find that the word "business" leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Still, the Tibetan Buddhist wisdom behind the "how to be successful in business" stories came through and has given me a bolstered sense of how to build compassion in my life.
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The Intro - 3 principles 5 3 Jun 25, 2013 10:44AM  
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