Offerings to honour the dead and devas

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Offerings to honour the dead and devas

Postby zamotcr » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:51 am

Hello,

What did Buddha said about giving offerings to honour the dead, to the devas, etc?

I know that devas cannot save us from anything, but it seems that through offerings to devas they could protect us.
Are there references in the suttas for this?

:namaste:
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Re: Offerings to honour the dead and devas

Postby khlawng » Wed Jan 15, 2014 12:17 pm

zamotcr wrote:Hello,
What did Buddha said about giving offerings to honour the dead, to the devas, etc?


To honour the dead,
only relatives born in the peta realm can receive offering of food.
every other beings survive on the food of that particular realm.
and you never run out of relatives to honour who are in the peta realm.

Janussonin Sutta

To honour devas, chant and dedicate merits.
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Re: Offerings to honour the dead and devas

Postby Sylvester » Thu Jan 16, 2014 3:01 am

Apparently, the Buddha recommended it, in AN 4.61 -

With wealth acquired by energetic striving, amassed by the strength of his arms, earned by the sweat of his brow, righteous wealth righteously gained, the noble disciple undertakes four worthy deeds. What four?

(1) “Here, householder, with wealth acquired by energetic striving … righteously gained, the noble disciple makes himself happy and pleased and properly maintains himself in happiness; he makes his parents happy and pleased and properly maintains them in happiness; he makes his wife and children, his slaves, workers, and servants happy and pleased and properly maintains them in happiness; he makes his friends and companions happy and pleased and properly maintains them in happiness. This is the first case of wealth that has gone to good use, that has been properly utilized and used for a worthy cause.

(2) “Again, with wealth acquired by energetic striving … righteously gained, the noble disciple makes provisions against the losses that might arise from fire, floods, kings, thieves, or displeasing heirs; he makes himself secure against them. This is the second case of wealth that has gone to good use … for a worthy cause.

(3) “Again, with wealth acquired by energetic striving … righteously gained, the noble disciple makes the five oblations (pañcabalī): to relatives, guests, ancestors (pubbapeta), the king, and the deities (devatā). This is the third case of wealth that has gone to good use … for a worthy cause.

(4) “Again, with wealth acquired by energetic striving … righteously gained, the noble disciple establishes an uplifting offering of alms—an offering that is heavenly, resulting in happiness, conducive to heaven—to those ascetics and brahmins who refrain from intoxication and heedlessness, who are settled in patience and mildness, who tame themselves, calm themselves, and train themselves for nibbāna. This is the fourth case of wealth that has gone to good use, that has been properly employed and used for a worthy cause.

“These, householder, are the four worthy deeds that the noble disciple undertakes with wealth acquired by energetic striving, amassed by the strength of his arms, earned by the sweat of his brow, righteous wealth righteously gained. When anyone exhausts wealth on anything apart from these four worthy deeds, that wealth is said to have gone to waste, to have been squandered, to have been used frivolously. But when anyone exhausts wealth on these four worthy deeds, that wealth is said to have gone to good use, to have been properly used, to have been utilized for a worthy cause.”

http://suttacentral.net/an4.61/en


Not sure if this sutta is suggesting a transactional slant to the offering/balī to the deities It seems to simply suggest that these deeds are uplifting in themselves, and serve as a basis for the recollection of generosity (see end-verse).

Oddly enough, this sutta is addressed to the ariyasāvaka (a noble one). You get the same msg in AN 5.41.
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