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Karma Capitalism

Times have changed since Gordon Gekko quoted Sun Tzu in the 1987 movie Wall Street. Has the Bhagavad Gita replaced The Art of War as the hip new ancient Eastern management text?

Signs of worldly success abounded as members of the Young Presidents' Organization met at a mansion in a tony New Jersey suburb. BMWs, Lexuses, and Mercedes-Benzes lined the manicured lawn. Waiters in starched shirts and bow ties passed out vegetarian canapés. And about 20 executives--heads of midsize outfits selling everything from custom audiovisual systems to personal grooming products--mingled poolside with their spouses on a late September evening.

After heading inside their host's sprawling hillside house--replete with glittering chandeliers, marble floors, and gilded rococo mirrors--the guests retreated to a basement room, shed their designer loafers and sandals, and sat in a semicircle on the carpet.