Steve answers your question in one paragraph:
This might sound harsh, but as long as we're exploring the subject I'd like to put something out there.
What has abundance done, besides allow a smaller and smaller group of people to enjoy a greater range of experience and power compared to others, all the while damaging the ecosystem of the planet?
Financial abundance is built on continued economic growth, which depends on increasing consumption, which results in greater environmental damage.
On the surface it seems obvious that we should feel grateful to be where we are - living in modern, rich societies. Relatively safe, disease isn't a large issue, relatively free, clean water, easy access to food, and all the rest of it.
But what's the cost of this? The issue here isn't about looking down on the CEO for living lavishly, jealous of his opulent lifestyle. It's the consequence of them living lavishly, and therefore also, the consequences of our living in financial abundance.
All of this came at the expense of others. Even if you feel good about the way you make your money - say, through an ethical business - you're contributing to a system that oppresses and destroys.
As long as you're part of that system, it doesn't matter how ethical you are in pursuit of your own abundance. You're like the breastplate of an evil knight - you don't attack people directly like the sword, but you help the sword to do its job. Think about it.
What do you do with your abundance?
What did you buy with it? Where were these things made, what were they made out of? Where were the raw materials sourced? Who sourced and built them, under what conditions? Is it that woman who lives on $1 a day? She would not judge you harshly for having what she does not, but maybe she'd judge you harshly for thinking that what you have is worth what she has to go through.
What about the bank you use?
Where does the money from your ethical business go? Into a bank, which loans it to other businesses. Does your bank refuse loans to businesses who they deem as unethical? If it doesn't, you're indirectly investing in methods of money-making that you would never do yourself, for ethical reasons.
We've seen what banks do and what their interests are. Putting your abundance into such a bank is a vote of confidence for that system. It's like buying products from manufacturers known to use cheap foreign labourers, in horrific working conditions. It just perpetuates it.
Here's another thing you spend your abundance on - war.
Want to be a Buddhist millionaire? Think about how much money you want (or have achieved, for the already abundant). Take that number and divide it by the amount of tax you'll pay on it. Take that figure, and divide it by the amount your government spends on its military as a proportion of its complete tax revenue. Then take that figure, and divide it by some cost of the military - something interesting. The cost of a stinger missile, an RPG, a bullet, for instance.
There are other examples I could use, but you get the point. Let's think hard before we pursue abundance -- particularly if we're dedicated to doing good in the world. Let's question it and really see if enabling ourselves to do good with the abundance we have is really worth the costs to other people and the world that went into achieving it.
What would happen if we did this, deeply and honestly?
Maybe we'd look into at and disagree with this premise. Maybe we'll come up with a framework to explain this that allows us to preserve our image of ourselves while still pursuing abundance. Maybe we'd become a little more self-aware when it comes to our own priorities and values, but still decide to pursue abundance anyway.
Fair enough. But maybe, we'd find that there's a type of abundance that's actually better than fast cars and lots of cash. Maybe a more meaningful kind. Maybe we're not far from envisioning it, if we could just separate spiritual pursuits with the pursuit of money and material possessions. Maybe we'd still want a world where there is abundance for all, but we'd just realise, our idea of abundance is wrong.