Importance of Charity

Srimad Bhagavatam 11.08.16 - Importance of Charity (download mp3)
by Keshav Chandra Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

 SB 11.8.16
su-duhkhoparjitair vittair
 asasanam grhasisah
madhu-hevagrato bhunkte
 yatir vai grha-medhinam

Just as a hunter takes away the honey laboriously produced by the honeybees, similarly, saintly mendicants such as brahmacaris and sannyasis are entitled to enjoy the property painstakingly accumulated by householders dedicated to family enjoyment.

The scriptures state: “Saintly mendicants in the sannyasa order of life and brahmacaris have first right to enjoy the sumptuous foodstuffs produced by the householders. If the householders enjoy such foodstuffs without first offering them in charity to the mendicants, such neglectful householders must undergo the lunar fast called candrayanam.” In family life one must overcome the natural tendency toward selfishness by giving abundant charity. Modern society foolishly does not observe such Vedic injunctions, and as a result the world has become overrun by envious grha-medhis, or persons wholly and solely dedicated to personal gratification in family life. Therefore, the whole world is seized in an uncontrollable spasm of violence and suffering. If one wants to live peacefully one must follow the Vedic injunctions regulating family life. Although the householders work very hard to accumulate money, the saintly sannyasis and brahmacaris have the right to first enjoy the fruits of such labor. The conclusion is that one should give first priority to spiritual advancement in Krsna consciousness and thus perfect one’s life. Then even without personal endeavor, one will be supplied all of one’s necessities by the mercy of the Personality of Godhead.

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