We can understand that generosity, in Påli: dåna, is wholesome,but in our daily life we can have doubts about the practice of generosity. Forpeople who are well off and who are glad to give things away for the benefitand happiness of others it is not difficult to practise generosity. But people who have barely enough money for their own needs have little opportunity forgenerosity, they are not able to give things away. How can they practisegenerosity? If they would give things to others there would not be anythingleft for themselves.
Everybody can just do what he is able to according to his status and thecircumstances he is in. Someone may be doing more than he is able to, whereas someone else may be lax in generosity. In both cases the result willbe worry and distress. Are there certain things which you like very much?
I have a watch which I like very much because I use it to know what time it is. I look at it very often.
If you would give it away to someone else would you regret it very much?
I would regret it for a long time.
Each time we give something away we should know whether, as aconsequence, few kusala cittas and many akusala cittas arise, or whether thereare more kusala cittas arising than akusala cittas
. If there are more akusalacittas arising than kusala cittas while we give something away, I think that it would be better to give something else which can be a condition for thearising of more kusala cittas than akusala cittas.People who do not have any understanding of cause and result in life may make a great effort to give, or, on the contrary, they may have no inclinationto give at all. If they are ignorant of cause and result and if they have nounderstanding of the kusala cittas or akusala cittas which arise after thegiving, they will either be overdoing generosity or, on the other hand, benegligent. In both cases there will be sorrow afterwards.
How can one be lax in generosity?
1Kusala citta: wholesome moment of consciousness. Akusala citta: unwholesome momentof consciousness.