Perfection of Generosity
This paramita is the enlightened quality of generosity, charity, giving, and offering. The essence of this paramita
is unconditional love, a boundless openness of heart and mind, a selfless generosity and giving which is
completely free from attachment and expectation.
very depths of our heart, we practice generously offering our love, compassion, time, energy, and resources to
serve the highest welfare of all beings.
is one of the essential preliminary steps of our practice. Our giving should always be unconditional
and selfless; completely free of any selfish desire for gratitude, recognition, advantage, reputation,
or any worldly reward.
perfection of generosity is not accomplished simply by the action of giving, nor by the actual gift itself.
the true essence of this paramita is our pure motivation of genuine concern for others—the truly
generous motivation of the awakened heart of compassion, wisdom, and love.
addition, our practice of giving should be free of discrimination regarding who is worthy and who is
unworthy to receive.
cultivate the paramita of generosity, it is wise to contemplate the enormous benefits of this practice, the
disadvantages of being miserly, as well as the obvious fact that our body and our wealth are impermanent. With
this in mind, we will certainly be encouraged to use both our body and wealth to practice generosity while we
still have them.
Generosity is a cure for the
afflictions of greed, miserliness, and possessiveness.
practice of giving, we may offer our time, energy, money, food, clothing, or gifts so as to assist others. To
the best of our ability, we may offer the priceless treasure of Dharma instruction, giving explanations on the
Buddha’s teachings. This offering serves to free others from misperceptions that cause confusion, pain, and
We can offer fearless giving and protection by delivering living beings (insects, animals, and people) from harm,
distress, fear, and terror. In this way, we offer care and comfort, helping others to feel safe and peaceful. We do
this selflessly, without counting the cost to ourselves. We practice the perfection of generosity in an especially
powerful way when we embrace all living beings continually in the radiant love of our heart.
Source: Used with permission from Neil Cohen at Naljor Prison
Dharma Service, PO Box 1177, Mount Shasta CA 96067.
Photo Credit: Intellimon Ltd.