‘You offer water, flowers,incense to the Buddha. By offering these beautiful things. Several things happen.
One, you start to create a detachment from these things. Does that mean you become a cold uncaring nobody that hangs out on the streets, just a beggar, a homeless person? No. A detachment from things is to have things and it doesn’t create suffering or not having it doesn’t create suffering.
Objects don’t become causes for you to suffer anymore. So you start creating a positive detachment to things. That’s one.
Two: You create a positive purification to miserliness, selfishness, greed and we can let go of things easier. When we are less greedy, less miserly, what’s the results? We have a little less money but we have more happiness. Have you heard the saying?
(The best wealth that we can have is the one we have given away)
Not the wealth we kept.
That doesn’t bring any happiness. Isn’t that wise? Let’s think about that again.
So by offering these things, They are not gold bars, they are not businesses. They are water offerings, beautiful offering items, everyday you practice. Giving. And it leads to something deeper.
It leads to emotional giving. Some of us can give money away. Easily. But we can never be wrong. I know people like that. They can give money away very easily, buy anything for you. They love you, they tell you they love you. They can give anything away but emotionally they can’t give away. They never can be wrong. They will never confess they are wrong, they rather hide their wrong, and lose everything. Than to confess they are wrong.
And that is the highest sort of miserliness you can experience. Why? Cause that type of miserliness makes that person not respected, not loved, dejected and it makes them know they are not doing the right thing. So it leads to that. It leads to what? It leads to emotional giving in a good way.
Highly realized practitioners can give up their wife, or not have one for you. Meaning they can spend their whole life as dharma practitioners. Monks or nuns. And not be attached to partners. For you. It’s a giving.
People who have to have a wife, have to have a husband, have to have a partner, and that overrides Dharma. They are actually not giving.
So they are very far away from Buddhahood. There’s no Buddha that needs a consort. There’s no Buddha that needs a partner. There’s no Buddha that needs a wife or a husband. If they needed one, it would be a Buddha.
So therefore, the highest practitioners, they can come back life after life happy and single.
Really happy and single. Not frustrated. You know how some people say “Oh I’m happy to be single” but you know they are not. It’s just that they can’t get anybody. So they pretend that they are happy but they are not.
But they won’t be happy being non single either.
Because their happiness doesn’t come from being single or non single. So what happens?
The highest form of giving is emotional giving.
To be able to easily let go of one’s attachments.
Imagine telling a person: “Oh, can you be a nun?” They will say no. Why? “Oh I can’t, I need a boyfriend.” Or “can you be a monk?” “Oh I can’t, I need a wife. Or I need romance. But I want to practice giving.” I’m like okay.
It doesn’t match. Those people they in fact hamper their spiritual growth. Is it possible to have a spiritual relationship with a partner and they can help each other grow? Yes definitely possible. There are people who can be with their partners, and they can grow together and help each other grow. It’s definitely possible. But that one we have to check out ourselves. When we are with our partners, so we want to do more? Do we become better? Is our minds more focused? Are we accomplishing more? That’s what we need to check with ourselves.
So to be Buddhist practitioners do we need to be always single? Not necessary. For some yes, it is necessary.
Just like for some, they need to take the vow of not taking alcohol. Because by drinking alcohol they create violence, unhappiness in people’s lives. So for some people, they need to take the vow.
But for some, they no need to take the vow, cause for them taking alcohol is to relax, just make others happy, it’s a social thing, doesn’t create anything. So it’s ok.
It’s not the alcohol that’s the bad karma, it’s what you do with it.
So it’s not your partner, your wife, your boyfriend or your alcohol or your fun, or your branded stuff that makes you a better person or that’s bad. It’s what you do with it afterwards.
So if you take branded things, and you become arrogant, you want to go around showing off to other people and put other people down or you want to show you’re somebody. Then that branded item creates negative karma for you. So it’s not the branded item, it’s your mind. So what should you do?
Don’t have branded items for the moment.
Because you’re suffering when you don’t have it. It means you definitely do not need it. That’s how we check ourselves. But be honest with Buddha.
If you can’t be honest with Buddha, then you will never be Buddha and progress on your spiritual practice. ‘
– His Eminence Tsem Tulku Rinpoche