Dāna – Generous Giving

Dāna, the act of giving, is a very fundamental meritorious deed according to the Buddha’s Teachings.
Dāna is one of the ten pāramī (perfections). These are mental qualities which have to be developed to a high degree for all spiritual attainments. Dāna is a precondition for successful meditation and can give power again and again when there is stagnation in meditation or spiritual development.
Very important for the result is the intention (cetanā), one has before, during and after the act of giving. It is important for one's own spiritual development to reflect this again and again and before every act of giving. Like this the benefit will be very satisfying.
Dāna, like all meritorious deeds, is more powerful, when it is performed with the understanding of cause and effect (kamma-vipāka), when one is aware of it before and while giving, that this deed will bring good results.
Dāna should be performed without any expectations for any worldly gain and honour or for one's reputation, but only for the liberation of mind (cetovimutti), for the liberation from all suffering (dukkha).
By giving dāna the mental factor of non-craving is strengthened (alobha cetasika). Non-craving is one of the wholesome roots the Buddha taught. They are wholesome or skillful (kusala), because they will bring pleasant results in the near or distant future.
The attitude of loving kindness (mettā), which is rooted in non-aversion and the attitude of compassion (karunā) are very supporting for giving.
Even if the donation is not used as one expected, one should be very mindful not to let arise any anger. By the usage of one's gift which is not according to one's own wishes one's merit is not diminished. But by anger after giving the merit of the wholesome deed can be strongly reduced.
After having given one should give up all thoughts of attachment which could arise towards the object. For this the contemplation about anicca, dukkha and anatta concerning the gift, the donor and the recipient is very helpful.
'Bhikkhus, there are these three bases of meritorious activity.
What three?
The basis of meritorious activity consisting in giving;
The basis of meritorious activity consisting in virtuous behaviour;
and the basis of meritorious activity consisting in meditative development'.
Anguttara Nikāya 8.36 (6) Activity

These three activities that generate wholesome kamma conducive to a happy rebirth, good fortune, and spiritual progress up to the attainment of Arahatship (final awakening) the Buddha mentioned in many suttas.

There are four options to give Dāna (generosity) to 'Cetovimutti-Theravada':

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  • Generous giving for the courses / retreats [Read More]
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  • Generous giving for a center and living place for Dhamma practitioners [Read More]

Read more> Pāramī - 10 perfections - preconditions for real happiness

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