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Brahmavihara & dhammadana by Goenka-ji

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  • Antony Woods
    Let us practise and develop the four brahmavihara (the nature of a brahma, hence sublime or divine state of mind, in which the four pure qualities are
    Message 1 of 3 , May 31, 2008
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      "Let us practise and develop
      the four brahmavihara
      (the nature of a brahma,
      hence sublime or divine state of mind,
      in which the four pure qualities
      are present):

      — the brahmavihara of infinite metta, (loving kindness)
      — the brahmavihara of infinite karuna, (compassion)
      — the brahmavihara of infinite mudita, (sympathetic joy)
      — the brahmavihara of infinite upekkha. (equanimity)

      There is a simple way
      to practise and develop
      the four brahmavihara:
      by the giving of dana that
      is pure in the past, present, and future,
      and pure in three ways.

      How does dana become pure
      in the past, present and future?
      When the mind of the donor
      is suffused with joy and delight:
      before giving dana,
      while giving dana, and
      after giving dana,
      then the dana becomes pure
      in the past, present and future.

      How does dana become pure in three ways?
      When the mind of the donor is filled with benevolence;
      when the recipient is living a life of pure sila;
      and when the dana,
      irrespective of amount and value,
      is earned by one's own labour,
      honestly and through right livelihood;
      then the dana is pure in three ways.

      Dana that is pure
      in the past, present, and future,
      and pure in three ways
      is highly beneficial.

      How does such dana
      help to develop the four brahmavihara?
      When the thing or place or facility
      that is given as dana
      is not for a particular person
      but for the benefit and welfare of all meditators,
      then this dana helps to develop the four brahmavihara.

      The mind of the donor
      is filled with infinite metta
      when he thinks—
      "Because of my dana,
      countless people
      are gaining or will gain
      happiness by getting this wonderful Dhamma".

      The mind of the donor
      is filled with infinite karuna
      when he thinks—
      "Because of this dana,
      there are so many suffering people in the world
      who will find a way out of their suffering,
      get the benefit of Dhamma
      and find contentment".

      The mind of the donor
      is filled with infinite mudita
      with the thought—
      "Oh!
      So many people
      are getting happiness and contentment
      through the practice of Dhamma
      because of my dana".

      The mind of the donor
      is filled with infinite upekkha
      with the thought—
      "Whether anyone praises my dana or criticizes it,
      whether I get success or failure because of this dana,
      it is of no concern to me.
      My dana is not for self-eulogy or for success or failure.
      This dana, given with pure volition,
      is solely for the benefit of others".

      In this way, meditators!
      The four brahmavihara are developed
      by giving pure dana.

      Meditators!
      The brahmavihara should be practised and developed.
      The practice of the brahmavihara is highly beneficial for us."
      http://www.vri.dhamma.org/newsletters/nl9803.html
      From: The Merits of Dana by Goenka-ji
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