Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Attitudes when doing ordinary offerings or Dharma offerings

Question: What should be the attitude when we help others with material things or if we are priests and offer teachings?

My answer:  When you give something to a poor person, (and I encourage my Dharma friends to make constant offerings of food, money, clothes, or whatever one can, to those who are in difficult situations), you should be humble, respectful and grateful to them for accepting your offering.
Be respectful as poverty is hard to bear and any insult can add immensely to their suffering. Be humble and grateful at being offered the opportunity to help them, as this will also help you to develop compassion and fulfill your filial duty towards your parent like sentient beings.

Especially if you offer something in the name of your dead relatives, be grateful that they might thus receive the karmic benefits of your action [1].
Also be aware that there are still people who lack basic needs and that you cannot help them constantly due to your limited compassion and means.

Its the same when giving Dharma teachings, as the offering of Amida Dharma is the highest form of offering. Be respectful, as all people suffer from ignorance and attachement to their ego. They might also feel insulted even if you teach the true Dharma, so its better to avoid those who are not in a learning mood as you and them can always lose control due to spiritual limitations.
Be humble as the Dharma you are teaching is not your property, and you are only a transmitter, not a creator of the teaching. Be grateful to Amida Buddha for giving you the chance to help others receive faith in Him, and for His unseen guidance and inspiration. Think that whatever true and useful words you say come from Amida's influence on you and whatever you say wrong is due to your unenlightened and limited personality. And you should also be aware that no matter what you do, you will never be able to repay Amida's benevolence and Compassion for you.


Note:
[1] Beings in bardo, but also others can see the things that are done in their name by their former relatives. If they see and are joyful of the good done in their name, they receive the karmic effect of that action. Its like it was done by themselves.

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