der kleine buddha
Posted on 03 / 31 / 2012
If you have any interest in supporting businesses with a Buddhist, enlightened agenda I would highly suggest you seek elsewhere. While I can't figure out exactly what is going on behind the scenes of this establishment, I think it has nothing to do with what its name suggests.
I'm allergic to milk and can't eat gluten and therefore frequent this place for bread and the like since there are no other shops nearby offering as wide a selection of Bio goods. However, I always hate entering this shop since the staff - particularly the owners - are some of the coldest, most unfriendly people I have encountered in Berlin. All the Tibetan flags and Buddhist paraphernalia adorning the place could never compensate for the personalities of the staff which are more reminiscent of Fascism than anything Buddhism espouses. But, as I said, my allergies trumped social preferences and I continued to frequent this establishment for over 2 years.
This has finally come to an end today after visiting a friend who was having a birthday party for his 4 year old. They planned a nice garden party but due to the rain they had to move it inside and simply didn't have enough chairs. My friend, who lives in the same building as a cafe called Greenstuff - which has the same owners as 'Little Buddha' - said he would ask them if he could borrow a few chairs for a few hours. They have about 40 metal folding chairs which are chained up outside the cafe, never used or even unfolded, and never even brought inside the cafe at night, apparently just waiting until business starts booming and they'll finally be needed. My friend frequents this cafe, often buys his child ice cream there and said the owners would certainly recognize him and lend him a few of their unused chairs. I was skeptical based on my knowledge of these owners and their utter lack of generosity or any semblence of kindness or warmth.
To make a short story even shorter, my friend went to 'Little Buddha', spoke to the female owner who was there and indeed recognized him and explained her his predicament. She said she wouldn't help him. He offered to leave a 200 Euro deposit and pay whatever fee she wanted for rental just to not destroy his little child's birthday party. She again said that she wouldn't help him. When he asked why not, she simply said that "it's not what we do." Remember, we're talking about cheap metal folding chairs which are never used, and would be returned after