Namo Tassa Bhagavato Arahato Samma Sambuddhassa !
Homage to the Blessed One, the Worthy One, the Supremely Enlightened One !
Velāma Sutta - The Discourse about Velāma on Alms Giving.Translated from the Pali by Ven. Bhikkhu Bodh Thero. – Wisdom Publications.
On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling at Savatthi in Jeta's Grove, Anathapindika's Park. Then the householder Anathapindika approached the Blessed One, paid homage to him, and sat down to one side. The Blessed One asked him: "Are alms given in your family, householder?" "Alms are given in my family, Bhante, but they consist of broken rice accompanied by rice gruel."
"If, householder, whether coarse or excellent,
(1) one gives alms respectfully,
(2) gives considerately,
(3) gives with one's own hand,
(4) gives what would not be discarded,
(5) gives with a view of future consequences, then wherever the result of that gift is produced for one, one's mind inclines toward the enjoyment of superb food, toward the enjoyment of superb clothing, toward the enjoyment of superb vehicles, toward the enjoyment of whatever is superb among the five objects of sensual pleasure. Also, one's children and wives, and one's slaves, servants, and workers, want to listen to one, lend an ear, and apply their minds to understand. For what reason? Just this is the result of actions that are done respectfully".
"In the past, householder, there was a brahmin named Velama. He gave such a great alms offering as this:
(1) eighty-four thousand golden bowls filled with silver;
(2) eighty-four thousand silver bowls filled with gold;
(3) eighty-four thousand bronze bowls filled with bullion;
(4) eighty-four thousand elephants with golden ornaments,
(5) eighty-four thousand chariots, with golden ornaments, golden banners, covered with nets of gold thread;
(6) eighty-four thousand milk cows,
(7) eighty-four thousand maidens adorned with jeweled earrings;
(8) eighty-four thousand couches spread with rugs, blankets, and covers, with excellent coverings of antelope hide, with canopies and red bolsters at both ends;
(9) many millions of cloths made of fine linen, fine silk, fine wool, and fine cotton. How much more of food and drink, snacks, meals, refreshments, and beverages? It seemed to be flowing like rivers".
"You might think, householder: ‘He was someone else, the brahmin Velama who on that occasion gave that great alms offering.’ But you should not look at it in such a way. I myself was the brahmin Velama who on that occasion gave that great alms offering".
"Now, householder, at that alms offering there was no one worthy of offerings, no one who purified the offering. Even more fruitful than the great alms offering that the brahmin Velama gave would it be to feed one person accomplished in right view. Even more fruitful than the great alms offering that the brahmin Velama gave, and feeding a hundred persons accomplished in right view, would it be to feed one once-returner. Even more fruitful than the great alms offering that the brahmin Velama gave, and feeding a hundred once-returners, would it be to feed one non-returner. Even more fruitful than … feeding a hundred non-returners, would it be to feed one arahant. Even more fruitful than … feeding a hundred arahants, would it be to feed one paccekabuddha. Even more fruitful than … feeding a hundred paccekabuddhas, would it be to feed the Tathagata, the Arahant, the Perfectly Enlightened One … would it be to feed the Sangha of monks headed by the Buddha … would it be to build a monastery dedicated to the Sangha of the four quarters … would it be for one with a mind of confidence to go for refuge to the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha … would it be for one with a mind of confidence to undertake the five training rules:
(1) to abstain from the destruction of life,
(2) to abstain from taking what is not given,
(3) to abstain from sexual misconduct,
(4) to abstain from false speech,
(5) to abstain from liquor, wine, and intoxicants, the basis for heedlessness".
"Even more fruitful … would it be to develop a mind of loving-kindness even for the time it takes to pull a cow's udder".
"Even more fruitful ... would it be to develop the perception of impermanence just for the time of a finger snap."
Sādhu ! Sādhu !! Sādhu !!! ( Excellent )
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