Charity

PURPORT OF CHARITY
Charity is ingrained in the Hindu culture. The Bhagwad Gita endorses charity as an act done without expectation of return, at the proper time and place to a worthy person. It suggests Sattvikam, good and pure charity done steadily to reach higher levels of spiritual growth.
The AdiParva of the Hindu Epic Mahabharata also explains that one must acquire wealth by honest means and then do charity- sharing a portion of one’s wealth with others. Refusal to use harsh words or take revenge is also explained as a form of charity. Serving water, planting trees, looking after animals especially cows are also recommended as acts of charity.
Giving love and affection to all creatures, and other acts of kindness are considered as noble actions of charity. According to Hindu Scriptures, charity is a form of good karma that affects the future life of a person, because of the principle of reciprocity – “you shall reap what you shall sow!”
The Hindu Text “Vyasa Sampita” states that charity in itself is a great virtue and doing good deeds lifts the nature of the giver. But the scriptures also emphasize on the intent of the donor and also his due diligence in choosing the right recipient. They also warn about not expecting anything in return.
All religions including Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism promote charity or sharing of one’s earnings with others.
Charity done with compassion leads one to the state of perfection and ultimately on to the path of salvation.