Scale of Return In Offerings

The Buddha then explained the benefits of these fourteen types of offerings:

  • By making an offering to an animal, with a pure mind, the offering may be expected to repay a hundredfold.
  • By making an offering with a pure mind to an immoral ordinary person, the offering may be expected to repay a thousandfold.
  • By making an offering to a virtuous ordinary person, the offering may be expected to repay a hundred-thousandfold.
  • By making an offering to one outside the dispensation who is free from lust for sensual pleasures due to attainment of jhana, the offering may be expected to repay a hundred -thousand times a hundred-thousand fold
  • By making an offering to one who has entered upon the way to the realisation of the fruit of stream-entry, the offering may be expected to repay incalculably, immeasurably.
  • What then should be said about making an offering to a stream-enterer,

or to one who has entered upon the way to the realisation of the fruit of once-return,

or to one who has entered upon the way to the realisation of the fruit of non-return,

or to a non-returner,

or to one who has entered upon the way to the realisation of the fruit of arahantship,

or to an arahant,

or to a Paccekabuddha,

or to a Buddha, the Fully Enlightened One ?

Here, an offering means one offers food enough for once only. If a giver offers many times, such as, over many days or many months, there are no words to describe the benefits of those offerings. These are the different types of personal offerings (patipuggalika- dakkhina).