Potential problems of merit sharing?

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    • #43489

      Theruwan Saranai!

      Waharaka Thero speaks about problems that can ensue when merits are not shared correctly in this sermon:

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    • #43495

      Yes. It could be a problem if one shares merit in the following way: “May ALL living beings will gain āyu ( long life), vanna (health), sukha (living comfortably), bala (influence over others). 

      • Then those on the wrong paths may also be “energized” to continue in their wrong ways (harming them in the long run) and possibly leading to problems for others on the correct path.

      It is better to do it the following way: “May ALL living beings gain wisdom (by learning Buddha Dhamma) and may these merits help them gain āyu ( long life), vanna (health), sukha (living comfortably), bala (influence over others) in setting the necessary background to attain Nibbana.”

      Theruwan Saranayi!

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    • #43500

      Thank you, Lal.

      Unfortunately, according to the translation, that does not fully tally.

      Please refer to the linked segment below 9:45 it goes:

      Question: Venerable Sir, can we wish for the micca dittika to be free from their micca ditti by transferring the merits for that purpose?

      Waharake Thero: No, they won’t ever renounce their micca ditti that easily. We’d have to transfer the merits to those who are samma dittika. If there’s any category of micca dittika amanussa, we might be wishing for them to be samma dittika and to have a fortunate rebirth. We might be doing that as it is our duty to do so, but the Micca dittika amanussa wouldn’t ever be samma dittika that easily.”

      If there’s an inconsistency in the translation please share.

      After that segment follow a few segments speaking about punyanu modanawa ( = merit sharing?) and Waharaka Thero’s own experience but there appear to be a few unintended contradictions in the translation, so I’m not completely clear on those segments (which run until just after the 12 min. mark). 

    • #43505

      As I have explained, two translations of the same verses can differ. 

      • The author of that video tries to translate word-by-word.
      • I don’t do that. I can understand what Thero is trying to say. Sometimes when one speaks, one or two words may come out the wrong way. In translating a discourse, we should try to grasp the overall message instead of hanging on to each word.

      It is incorrect to say that we can not change anyone’s mind. We may not be able to change it right then, but our merit offers will work towards that, along with many other influences. 

      • Please read what I wrote carefully. 
      • Here is what I wrote: “It is better to do it the following way: “May ALL living beings gain wisdom (by learning Buddha Dhamma) and may these merits help them gain āyu ( long life), vanna (health), sukha (living comfortably), bala (influence over others) in setting the necessary background to attain Nibbana.”
      • It does not say they should gain merits to lengthen their CURRENT LIFE, etc. That is what Thero explains about the 12 min mark.
      • As I phrased it, our merits are not intended to support their CURRENT way of life.

      The bottom line is we need to understand the basic ideas/concepts. 


    • #43522

      Thank you for the added explanation, Lal.

    • #44350


      There is no problem at all to share taking part, rejoice with one’s skilful deeds. Every being, as foolish they might be, would benefit a lot if taking part. And it would be hard to ever share anything if neither in relation nor near of those beyond common. Additional it’s known that a gift by a Noble would be purifying, even if the receiver is far off. Sure, sharing between micchas just increases their bond to each others and no purification is found. That’s why people usually give the first share to the Juwels, Sangha, teacher, to possible become them purified.

      It’s just because of fear to lose beloved Loka-Dhammas, maccharia, that people abstain from shares of good and right. Sure it can happen, if telling people about good, that their might kill, banner or react otherwise foolish.

      The sphere of limitless mudita requires right view to an extend of the third path. Not wishing others to gain fruits of their good fomer deeds, most are after because don’t understand that a happiness after a wrong deed is never related to it. Right view must be very firm for right mudita. Macchariya (headed by ingratitude) is the domain of common folk, not even near the sphere of the Brahmas.

      It’s right to say (reading red): we need to share the merits toward the Noble Ones first, the Sangha, as it’s also a duty to approach teacher first, and it’s also right that there is no duty to share backwardly (but may one be careful, if not firm yet), yet simply an act of compassion, such as the Arahats even taught the wanderers of other sects, hardly ever getting the point, such as the domain of Jains in this Sasana today. Simply an act out of compassion, since if grasping just one sentence, it would be of much benefit for them.

      And if one remembers the “Sick people Sutta” (Aṅguttaranikāya, 3), one would clearly see that’s never meant to be wasted off.

      Just thought to let take part of the merits, for those able to grasp and release on such way.

      metta & mudita

      (Samana Johann)

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