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Proper Practice of Generosity

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  • Proper Practice of Generosity

    Dear Venerable Sir,

    I have observed that when I practice a lot of generosity(i.e. when I give too much too fast), I end up having a lot of pride and develop dangerous amounts of anger. And have gotten into trouble because of this. So I've learned to do a lot of metta during such spells to overcome this.

    So how does one know, how much generosity is to be practiced so that this side-effect does not happen? Or is there some other reason for this side-effect?

    Also how effective is generosity in overcoming greed in comparison to meditation? Since in my case, when I had a problem with lust, generosity is what helped me the most in comparison to Asubha(which frankly speaking I did not even do most of the time, simply because lust was too pleasurable for me to give up)

    With Metta

  • #2
    Dear Abhshek,

    So how does one know, how much generosity is to be practiced so that this side-effect does not happen? Or is there some other reason for this side-effect?
    Perhaps you are giving too much! Or perhaps you need to incorporate more compassion in your generosity. If your generosity is focussed on the need of the other person, you will usually be able to avoid the sense of self-importance that is pride.

    Try to figure out yourself what is going on. Once you get an insight into the problem, you can do something about it. This is much more powerful than other solving the problem for you. But give yourself time. Defilements usually need a lot of work before they are overcome.

    Also how effective is generosity in overcoming greed in comparison to meditation?
    Generosity is very helpful in overcoming greed, not so much because you are giving away your own property, but because you are shifting your focus from your own needs and wants to those of other people.

    All spiritual practice helps you overcome greed. The basic principle is that you are getting your sense of meaning, contentment and joy through your spiritual practice rather than through material things, recognition, praise and the like. It all helps. So keep up the good work, and you will gradually learn as you go along.

    With metta.

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    • #3
      Thank you for the response Ajahn Brahmali

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ajahn Brahmali View Post

        Try to figure out yourself what is going on. Once you get an insight into the problem, you can do something about it. This is much more powerful than other solving the problem for you. But give yourself time. Defilements usually need a lot of work before they are overcome.

        With metta.
        Dear Venerable Ajahn Brahmali,

        There were lot of reasons for this problem, but the most pre-dominant of the reasons was that I was not sharing the merits with all living beings and was developing the ego "I'm going to become really big with the merit, much bigger than others."

        With Metta.

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