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Generosity (Skt. dāna; Tib. སྦྱིན་པ་, jinpa, Wyl. sbyin pa), the first of the six paramitas, is defined as an attitude of giving.


Chökyi Drakpa says:

Generosity, is divided into
  • material giving,
  • giving the Dharma, and
  • giving protection from fear.
You should practise these three kinds of generosity according to your capacity. At the very least, you should offer Sur (burnt offerings) and water tormas, since this offering incorporates all three kinds of giving.


Maitreya says:

སྦྱིན་པ་མི་མཐུན་ཕྱོགས་རྣམས་དང་། །

རྣམ་པར་མི་རྟོག་ཡེ་ཤེས་ལྡན། །
འདོད་པ་ཐམས་ཅད་ཡོངས་རྫོགས་བྱེད། །

སེམས་ཅན་རྣམ་སྨིན་བྱེད་རྣམ་གསུམ། །

Generosity in which adverse factors have disappeared,
Endowed with wisdom that is non-conceptual,
Completely fulfills all wishes,
And brings all beings to maturity at the three levels.

Maitreya, Ornament of Mahāyāna Sūtras, XVII, 8

Alternative Translations

  • liberality
  • paramita of giving (Dharma Publishing)