We are often blind to our own generosity, to the gift of our practice and efforts. The Buddha invites us to contemplate this beautiful quality of our minds, and its wholesome results, as part of the practice of growing and sustaining.
Patience is one of the Paramis and gives us the strength to endure through difficult experiences. We can be inspired to practice it through contemplating leaders such as Mandela or the Dalai Lama who have faced extreme challenges in their lives without retribution or revenge, but with kindness and wisdom.
The commitment to truthfulness is a mirror which highlights our deepest intention to bring harmony and peace through kind and useful words. Also it shows us the sneaky seductions of lying, flattery and unkind speech.
Reflect on how generosity is related to equality. When you offer a gift to someone you perceive as unequal is that generosity or pity? Feel the difference between these two forms of giving. How does the heart feel and how does the mind hold the offering in a generous act and in pity? When you perceive someone as a human being regardless of their present condition you can only perceive them as equal. When you give to the less fortunate, you are lost in the pain of the circumstances. The generous heart feels that pain but gives to the human being.
This week find several occasions to give something away to someone less privileged. Before you do, release the projections and allow equality to surface. One person giving to another. Look the person in the eye when you hand them the gift. Let your heart meet theirs. Feel the humility of true generosity. Feel the joy of release. Notice the qualitative difference between giving with humility and the self-importance of "helping the disadvantaged."