Happiness & Prosperity

Happiness & Prosperityby Jaya
Part 3 (previous part)

How should one spend wealth so that one may obtain optimum happiness?

In the Anguttaranikaya (A III 279) the Buddha says that there are five advantages to be gained in having wealth. With one’s wealth one can make oneself, parents, wife, children, workers, friends and colleagues happy and also make offerings to recluses and Brahmins.

The Buddha says that a person who spends his money in this way can be compared to a lovely lake with clear, blue, cold, delicious, crystalline water which lies near a village or township from which people can draw water, drink from it, bathe in it and use it for any other purpose. (S. I.90) The Pattakammasutta (A II 67) extends this list besides the above ways of spending money to include securing wealth against misfortunes by way of fire, water, king, robbers, enemies or ill disposed heirs, spending wealth for the fivefold offerings such as natibali (relatives), atithibali (guests), petabali (departed ancestors) rajabali (king’s tax) devabali (gods), and offering gifts to recluses and Brahmins who abstain from sloth and negligence who are genuinely disciplined, kind and forbearing.

The Pattakammasutta goes on to say that if a person disregarding these fourfold purposes spends his money it is called “wealth that has failed to seize its opportunity, failed to win merit, unfittingly made use of.”

( Part 4 )