The Essential Scripture...

Dictionary

The Essential Scriptures of the Buddha and Patriarchs

Sūtra in Forty-Two Sections

Section 10

The Buddha said, “Now, a person who cultivates the way should engage in vast affection and vast empathy. There is no greater offering than offering merit. By guarding one’s mind and revering the way, the merit forthcoming will be extraordinarily great. If you witness a person who is practicing charity and you assist him in this joyfully, you too will gain a meritorious reward.” A person asked, “But wouldn’t that inevitably reduce the amount of the other person’s merit?” The Buddha answered, “It is like a torch light: even though hundreds and thousands of people may come to light their own torches off of it and leave with that flame, its own flame remains unaffected. So too is it with merit.”