Chapter 45: The Index of Sufficiency


Chapter 45 – Index of Individual Sufficiency


Throughout the period of 45 years of preaching by the Lord Buddha, his teachings had covered numerous topics in different arenas such as meditation, conduct, politics, etiquette, universe, earning and spending, love, karma, supernatural power, various realms and etc.  As such, the Lord Buddha’s teaching on earning and spending management is one of the most popular topics referred by many Buddhist masters who teach Buddhist economics. 

Thus, this chapter of dhammonomics applies the Lord Buddha’s key teaching on earning and spending management of which Buddhists are recommended to allocate their incomes into three major groups out of four ratios as followings:

25% of income for saving

25% of income for spending, and

50% of income for investing

This simple teaching gives us the percentiles that we can express them in term of dhammonomic equation and graph as follows:

i = Income

S = Sufficiency

E = Percentile of Earning Allocation

E = (±) 25% Saving (±) 25% Spending (±) 50% Investing

E > 25%, S = Overly Sufficient

E < 25%, S = Insufficient

E ≈ 25%, S = Sufficient

(since E meets Cost of Living at 25% of Income)

E > 0% < 25%, S ≈ 0 as it meets cost of necessity, but not the total cost of living.



(±) 25% Saving = Principle Amount ± Interest ± Inflation/Deflation

(±) 25% ± (% of Interest) ± (% of Inflation or Deflation)



(±) 25% of income to meet cost of living

= Expenditure on Necessity ± Expenditure on Luxury ± Etc.

= (need) ± (want) ± (etc.)

Need = Shelter + Medication + Food + Clothing

Want & Etc. = Transportation + Education + Technology + Recreation & Sport + Energy & Fuel + Utilities + Communication + Entertainment + Charity & Donation + Caring & Sharing (give and get) + Tax



(±) 50% of income

= (% of invested amount) ± (% of Profit) ± (% of Loss)


With the given variables, we can create and plot the graph of index of sufficiency whereas more than 25% of income that meets the cost of living can yield ‘sufficiency’, otherwise, the lesser percentile denotes the earning which may meet the cost of necessity but not all of the cost of living.  As a result, the ‘shortfall of sufficiency’ occurs.  On the contrary, if earning is negative, it means that one is running into a deficit, and the graph reflects insufficiency.

In conclusion, the index of sufficiency takes into account of the Lord Buddha’s teaching on earning, saving, spending and investing with given calculable ratios.  We found it very useful to implement this philosophy into dhammonomic expression whereby the ratios can be converted into certain percentiles providing that corresponding equations can verify the doctrine as well as possibly giving approximate equivalent of values in numbers.


By Pirajak Tisuthiwongse (Pittaya Wong)

Dhammonomics Inventor / Dharma Wizard

20 Sept 2022