Generosity & Wholesomeness (Nina Van Gorkom)
- "The Buddha taught different ways of developing wholesomeness, and when we learn about these ways there are already conditions for more wholesomeness. We find opportunity for generosity not only while we are giving but also before the actual giving, when we try to obtain the things we intend to give, and afterwards when we recollect our giving.
There are still other ways of practicing generosity, even when we do not have things to give. The appreciation of other people's good deeds is also a type of generosity. When we notice that someone else is doing a good deed we can appreciate his wholesomeness, and we may express this with words of approval and praise. We may be stingy not only with regard to our possessions but also with regard to words of praise. Gradually one can learn to be generous in appreciating the wholesomeness of others.
Good deeds are usually classified as threefold: as generosity, morality, and mental development. This threefold classification should not be considered a rigid one. Morality, or abstinence from evil deeds, can also be seen as an aspect of generosity, as an act of kindness to others. When we abstain from evil deeds we give other beings the opportunity to live in peace, free from harm. If we want to develop generosity, we should not neglect mental development the development of wholesome states of mind. We should know when consciousness is unwholesome and when wholesome in order to develop generosity and other good qualities."
From: Generosity: The Inward Dimension by Nina van Gorkom
Dana The Practice of Giving
selected essays edited by Bhikkhu Bodhi
For Free Distribution, as a gift of Dhamma, from Access to Insight and the Buddhist Publication Society http://www.bps.lk
With metta / Antony.