January 5, 2019 at 6:35 pm #21197
From this post: Micchā Ditthi, Gandhabba, and Sōtapanna Stage I would like further information on bullet point 3:
3) Respecting and making offerings to those with higher virtues has no merits
I haven’t not understood what making offerings means. If anyone can please explain further it would be great. I would like to know how does one make offerings to those with higher virtues.
January 6, 2019 at 7:43 am #21205
“Respecting and making offerings to those with higher virtues has no merits”.
For example, bhikkhus belong to this category. They are the ones who mainly sustain the Buddha Sasana (especially in the old days, where there was no printed material available).
– Other than that bhikkhus are the symbols of Buddha Sasana. I pay respects to any bhikkhu because he represents Buddha Sasana.
– The Buddha has said, there will be a time towards the end of the Buddha Sasana, where a bhikkhu will not be wearing the yellow robe, but just having a yellow band around his wrist. He said that one would still get full benefits (merits) by making offerings to that “bhikkhu”.
Another aspect is that one should also respect those who teach moral values, even outside the Buddha Sasana. They COULD BE Bodhisattvas too. As a Bodhisattva, our Buddha had taught moral values to people many, many times in his past lives.
January 7, 2019 at 12:04 pm #21247
I want to add this sutta about the benefits of giving, especially for virtual people and Bikkhus: The Analysis of Offerings to the Teacher (Dakkhiṇāvibhaṅgasutta MN142) (remember to click on the Gear icon and enable Pali-English parallel for easy reference). In this sutta. The Buddha even quantify the merits of giving by specific number, this is very interesting point:
Now, Ānanda, gifts to the following persons may be expected to yield the following returns. To an animal, a hundred times. To an unethical ordinary person, a thousand. To an ethical ordinary person, a hundred thousand. To an outsider free of sensual desire, 10,000,000,000. But a gift to someone practicing to realize the fruit of stream-entry may be expected to yield incalculable, immeasurable returns. How much more so a gift to a stream-enterer, someone practicing to realize the fruit of once-return, a once-returner, someone practicing to realize the fruit of non-return, a non-returner, someone practicing to realize the fruit of perfection, a perfected one, or a Buddha awakened for themselves? How much more so a Realized One, a perfected one, a fully awakened Buddha?
January 7, 2019 at 12:22 pm #21248
I’m wondering if such offering includes the ritualistic ones be it offerings to the Buddha – yes there are people doing it – material or immaterial offers: flowers, honey, attitude,etc…
and in the same line of reasoning i’m wondering too on the kammic outcomes of the offerings to the Devas…?
January 7, 2019 at 1:40 pm #21256
In various suttas The Buddha said about what should be given to the Bhikkhus, that is what need for them to survive and practice the Path (robe, water, food, lodging, medicines, …). And in Danamahaphalasutta, the Buddha describe in details how giving works, what state of mind lead to which result. So it actually depend greatly on the state of mind of the giver and also the receiver, the actual gift is best to be usable and helpful (toward the Path) for the receiver.
In the sutta that I mentioned in the above post, The Buddha had gave us a scale to measure the merit of offering, base on that scale, I would say that offering to devas is worth more than 100 000 (ethical ordinary person) but will be much less than 10 000 000 000 (outsiders of Buddhism who are free of sensual desires), and it depends on if that deva is an Ariya or not. But nothing can be compare to the gifts give to Ariya, even giving to Sotapanna Anugami will yield uncountable merits.
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