GenerosityThe essence of generosity is letting go. Pain is always a sign that we are holding on to something - usually ourselves. When we feel unhappy, when we feel inadequate, we get stingy; we hold on tight.

Generosity is an activity that loosens us up. By offering whatever we can - a dollar, a flower, a word of encouragement - we are training in letting go.

There are so many ways to practice generosity. The main point isn't so much what we give, but that we unlock our habit of clinging. A traditional practice is simply to offer an object that we cherish from one hand to the other.

A woman I know decided that whatever she was attached to she'd give away. One many gave money to people begging in the streets every day for six months after the death of his father. It was his way of working with grief. Another woman trained in visualizing giving away whatever she most feared losing.

Giving practice shows us where we're holding back, where we're still clinging. We start with our well-laid plans, but life blows them apart. From a gesture of generosity, true letting go will evolve. Our conventional perspective will begin to change.

The causes of aggression and fear begin to dissolve by themselves when we move past the poverty of holding back and holding on.

The journey of generosity is one of connecting with the wealth of bodhichitta so profoundly that we are willing to begin to give away whatever blocks it. We open ourselves and let ourselves be touched. We build confidence in all-pervasive richness. At the everyday level, we experience it as flexibility and warmth.

- Comfortable With Uncertainty by Pema Chodron

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Tags: Daily Positive Thoughts, Generosity, Daily Wisdom, Daily Words of Wisdom, Pema Chodron

Types Of Giving

His Holiness Dalai LamaIn these ways "giving" refers to an attitude of generosity as well as those physical and verbal acts motivated by generosity. Altruistic giving requires forsaking all miserliness, being solely concerned with relieving another's poverty, and not being concerned about getting anything out of it for yourself.

If you sought profit for yourself from an act of charity in the future, it would be like giving a loan with interest. Rather, dedicate it only to others, instead of looking forward to the favorable karmic results that will indeed accrue to you. Practicing generosity calls for developing a willingness to give away all possessions.

Giving is of three types:

1. Donating material things such as money, clothing and food; making gifts to the poor and the sick, and donations for education and the provision of medical care;

2. Providing clear teachings about spiritual practices as well as about proper types of worldly livelihood, such as in becoming a medical practitioner, and giving encouragement to undertake moral behavior;

3. Giving relief from fearful situations by protecting beings from robbers, unjust governments, ferocious animals, flood, fire, and so forth. This includes protecting animals; even help a bug out of a puddle.

Though difficult, it is important to imagine giving away your own good karmas, which are like roots giving rise to favorable circumstances in the future. By having a strong sense of dedicating your roots of virtue to others, you will no longer seek for any reward for yourself. The reward, thereby, will be greater than you could imagine.

- How to Expand Love by His Holiness the Dalai Lama

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Focusing The Power of Attention For Success

Happiness and well-being

Success has a relation to the satisfaction of the soul in the context of the environment in which one lives; it is a result of actions based on the ideals of truth, and includes the happiness and well-being of others as part of one's own fulfillment. Apply this law to your material, mental, moral, and spiritual life and you will find it a complete, comprehensive definition of success.

People think of success in different ways, depending on their aim in life. You ever hear of it in connection with stealing: "He was a successful thief"! This shows that not all kinds of success are desiresable. Our success must not hurt others. Another qualification of success is that we not only bring harmonious and beneficial results to ourselves, but also share those benefits with others.

Suppose a wife engages in the spiritual practice of prolonged silence, and at such times refuses to talk even to her husband and children. Though she may succeed in keeping silent, and thereby gain some degree of personal inner peace, her behavior is selfish and detrimental to her family's happiness. She is not truly successful unless the accomplishment of her good intention also benefits those to whom she has a responsibility.

Likewise, the attainment of material success means more than that we are individually entitled to enjoy our prosperity; it means that we are morally obligated to help others to create a better life as well.

Anyone who has the brains can make money. But if he has love in his heart, he will never be able to use that money selfishly; he will always share with others. Money becomes a curse to the miserly, but to those who have heart it is a blessing.

Henry Ford, for example, makes a lot of money, but at the same time he doesn't believe in charity that simply encourages people to be lazy. Rather, he provides work and a livelihood for many. If Henry Ford makes money by giving others prosperity too, he is successful in the right way. He has greatly helped the masses; American civilization owes much to him.

Even the greatest of saints are not fully redeemed until they have shared their success, their ultimate experiences of God-realization, by helping others toward divine realization. This is why those who have that attainment are dedicated to giving understanding to those who don't understand.

Thus, if you find joy and pleasure in the culture of your mind to achieve true success, not only do you insure your own happiness, but that of others as well.

- Journey To Self-Realization by Paramahansa Yogananda

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Live Without Attachment By Being Generous

Inner Peace

Let go of evaluating yourself on a basis of how much you've accumulated and what is in your financial portfolio. Stop putting a dollar value on all that you have and do. Let go of your need to get a "good deal" and choose instead to be a being of sharing. You'll be happily surprised by how nice it feels to simply change your belief that you're only successful if you're making money.

The less you focus on making a profit - instead shifting your energy to living your purpose in harmony with everyone else - the more money will flow to you and the more opportunities for generosity will be available to you.

The world of institutional pressures is built on an endless list of human-made do's and dont's. Lao-Tzu advocates that you discover your heart's true desire, all the while remembering that no one else can tell you what it is.

Do the Tao Now

Post the following affirmation for your constant attention: I am moral, profitable, and a genius extraordinaire, regardless of what any institutional transcript or bank statement says. Repeat this mantra until it becomes your way of being. You will feel a sense of inner peace as you release the hold that outer forms have on you.

- Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life by Dr. Wayne Dyer

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Tags: Tao, Wayne Dyer, Generosity, Lao Tzu, Inspirational Quotes, Dr. Wayne Dyer

What Is Your Experience With Generosity?

GenerosityRight now, take a few moments to review your past in terms of the generosity you've received and bestowed. Ask yourself the following questions and note the first images that come to mind. Strive to make this a routine practice each time you feel blessed by someone's generosity or challenged to be more generous yourself.

- When have I especially appreciated another person's act of generosity toward me? How did it feel? Why did I appreciate it so much? How did I respond? Try to feel some gratitude for these kind benefactors.

- When have I been especially generous to others? How did I feel? Why? What charitable cause or causes could I support better now?

- What individuals and groups of people do I find it hard to think compassionately and open-mindedly about? Considering each individual and group separately, why do I experience this difficulty? How might I work toward overcoming it?

- Thinking of individuals in my life now, what gift would I like from them? Why?

- Thinking of individuals in my life now, what gift would they most appreciate from me? Why? What would I most like to share with them?

- Am I usually on the giving or the receiving side of relationships? Have I realized that true generosity includes both giving and receiving, just like breathing in and breathing out?

- Buddha Is As Buddha Does by Lama Surya Das

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Tags: Generosity, Daily Wisdom, Inspirational Quotes, Inspirational Words, Daily Wisdom Tips, Lama Surya Das