30 SEPTEMBER 2020 – THE DAILY CUSHION
GENEROSITY EFFECTS A LAYPERSON’S MIND & FUTURE by Uzine Kundala
“And what is accomplishment in generosity?
Katamā ca, byagghapajja, cāgasampadā?
It’s when a gentleman lives at home rid of the stain of stinginess, freely generous, open-handed, loving to let go, committed to charity, loving to give and to share.
Idha, byagghapajja, kulaputto vigatamalamaccherena cetasā agāraṃ ajjhāvasati muttacāgo payatapāṇi vossaggarato yācayogo dānasaṃvibhāgarato.
This is called accomplishment in generosity.
Ayaṃ vuccati, byagghapajja, cāgasampadā. (3: 7)”
How to Sacrifice about Generosity
_ Yogi (practitioner man) gives a gift with the thought. There were the great sacrifices of the sages of the past. After death, he reappears in the company of the devas (gods) who delight in creation. Then, having exhausted that action, that power, that status, that sovereignty, he is a returner, coming back to this world. This dāna is called vaṭṭa dāna (round in saṁsara again and again).
_This is an ornament for the mind, a support for the mind. After death, he reappears in the company of Brahma’s Retinue. Then, having exhausted that action, that power, that status, that sovereignty, he is a non-returner. He does not come back to this world who will be non-returner (Anāgāmi person). This is the best way of dāna is called vivaṭṭa dāna (generosity to transcend dukkha) that is the end of suffering, the Buddha mentioned dāna with Vipassanā. (Aṅguttara, An.7.52 Dānamahapphalasuttaṁ)
_ These are the reason and cause, why a person gives a gift of a certain sort and it does not bear great fruit or great benefit, whereas another person gives a gift of the same sort and it bears great fruit and great benefit. (https://accesstoinsight.org/…/an/an07/an07.049.than.html).
The Buddha taught the layperson the Dhamma in a way that leads to his welfare and happiness in this life and in future life. Kalyānamittatā- good friendship is very important. You have also the qualities or factors of good friendship as well. The four factors are accomplishment in saddhā-faith, sīla-ethic, cāga- generosity, and paññā- wisdom that means Vipassanā (insight meditation). (Dhīghajānu sutta, https://suttacentral.net/an8.54/en/sujato)
You are offering dāna (cāga- generosity) as a good worldling (kalyāṇa puthujjana) and not as a blind worldling (andha Puthujjana). Knowledge (ñāṇa) knows the truth and not kamma. Therefore this is a dāna performed with knowledge, and will sure to reach Nibbāna. Dāna is not prolonging the round of existence (saṁsāra). Not knowing the right way of doing it only prolongs the samsara.
Accomplishment in generosity, he committed to charity, love to give, and to share.
_Offering with the desire for the becoming of a human being or heavenly being is for the cause of dukkha (Samudaya Saccā). Even becoming the blissful khanda (aggregate), it is still the truth of dukkha (suffering) that is dukkha saccā.
_ With the giving (dāna) still get lost in dukkha. The truth has to be based on the khanda for becoming the knowledge of seeing.
”As the breath fades, the mind relaxes, the body also begins to relax. Observe the body as a (body) form. It’s not self, but only a shell, a rupa, that temporarily supports consciousness. As observing, the body, let the breath and body fade. (Credit to Steve Lin from FB)
The Five Rituals
First of all, there are some things to do before practicing Vipassana meditation.
1. You should offer yourself to the Buddha during practicing meditation saying ” May I offer myself, Ven. Sir.”.
2. If you have done wrong physically, verbally, and mentally to the teachers, parents, you should apologize to them so as to get rid of your sins.
3. You should send your loving-kindness to guardian devas ( gods or deities) of persons, houses, towns, Sasana Teachings and all beings to be healthy and happy. May they be free from suffering.
4. You should state thus:”May all my wholesome offering is done in previous and present existences conduce to the attainment of the Path, the Fruition, and Nirvana.”
5. “I have died in many existences. I must practice Vipassana meditation before I die in this existence.”
You must be mindful of death.(Credit to “how to Live as a Good Buddhist” Vol.II, Trans; U Han Htay and U Chit Tin.)
Guided Meditation- During the giving we have to enrich with insight. Wanting to be free from the direct experience of dukkha (suffering) and make the offering must contemplate the khandha in this way.
– Let contemplate the khandha (mind and body) for five minutes before the offering.- Therefore the offering ceremony transformed into a vivaṭṭa dāna (Dāna transcend the round of existence).
– You have to change your mind for I am offering these things with the knowledge of knowing dukkha saccā. Saddhā (faith) follows behind and knowledge (ñāṇa) is leading at the front.
– You must believe it that expect Nibbāna, it will never give other results.- In pāḷi words; (Idaṁme daāna Nibbānata paccayo hotu). (Ref: Above suttas and Ven. Mogok Sayadaw’s dhamma talk on 12th October 1962)