When it comes to generosity it seems there’s always an internal battle going on in my mind. Why do I offer to do things? How much should I give? What are my real intentions? I can honestly say that I have never really been at peace with my relationship to gift. There are a great deal of entanglements here for me.
This week many of us will pause to participate in what we call “Thanksgiving,” for the blessings in our lives. There is a text called the “Mangala Sutta,” the Buddha’s discourse on Blessings. At the beginning of the sutta, he asks: “What is truly auspicious, truly a blessing?” His response (perhaps surprising) is how to craft an empowered life that is in harmony with, and supportive of, our deepest values. The thirty-eight enumerated blessings in the sutta remind us that we are a part of something greater than a small sense of self. Connected to all of life through integration of deep wisdom in our lives, we give and receive blessings.