In short, if you want to help other people achieve true happiness, first you have to help them to have morality. When they have morality, they will try to earn blessing and will achieve lasting happiness. It is a real help. If we assist them to have food, then it is temporary help. If we help them to be ethical, then this is a real help, and this is great deeds.
So, in this life, the most remarkable job is to help people have morality, and the worst one is to destroy the morality of them.
For example, we talk about the law of Karma and morality to someone and give them books, records for their reference. We also invite them to do charity with us. Little by little, they will be instilled Buddhist morality, so they will be ethical and lead a righteous life. Aforementioned is a great deed because we not only help them in this life but countless lives after. If we can provide this kind of help to many people, we will achieve huge blessing. In this life, if you can help about one hundred people be ethical and believe in the law of Karma, you will come to a nice place after your death. So, try your best from now on until your death. If fortunate, you can help fifty people in a year, otherwise, try with some people each year, and you will achieve your goal before you die.
And one of the worst deeds is to incite others to commit sin. For example, there were two boys, one is good, and the other is bad. Once, the bad one prompted the good one, “Living in the world, you should enjoy the pleasures of life. Now you should follow me for a drink. If you do not have money, I will pay for you, don’t worry at all. You should be acquainted with drinking beer and prostitution. Living the way you have done so far is not okay.” A few days later, the bad boy ran out of money.
– “Today I’ve got no money, will you treat me?” he then asked his friend.
– “I do not have money,” the good boy replied.
– “So, steal something of your parents.”
– “I’m afraid they will punish me.”
– “Don’t worry. I will show you the way.”
– “I’m afraid of committing sin.”
– “Nothing is sin in this life. Try to enjoy whatever you can as much as possible.” The bad boy assured his friend.
The bad boy committed a cardinal sin that nothing can be compared with because he made a person unethical. So, again, we must emphasize that the greatest deed is to help people have morality and the worst deed is to destroy the morality of them.
We help others have this belief and believe that they will achieve happiness if they love, share with and give up their things to others. We will earn big blessing on this job. Conversely, if we advise others, “Living in this world, you should do whatever bring you benefit, otherwise, don’t do that.” If we have this lifestyle and make people believe in that, we will commit a severe sin.
For example, there was a father who was somewhat pragmatic. He taught his children: “Don’t do what does not bring you benefit. You should live wisely.” His children followed his motto, and the whole family went downward and became penniless. All his children resulted in failures when they grew up, and no one had any success. The reason is that they lived as his father’s evil motto. The father, therefore, created bad karma. Any parents who teach their children morality, how to create blessing, and giving up their things to others will earn an outstanding blessing.
And that is why honest monks and nuns win respect and admiration from people. It’s because they teach morality to people. Thanks to their teachings, people live more righteously. So, we have to pay homage and bow in front of them.
Unfortunately, there are now many monks and nuns misunderstanding their primary job that is to teach morals to people. So, they do not focus on their practice to teach people morality later but focus on doing charity, like giving food to poor people. Doing this is good but very superficial. So if temples make an effort to provide food to poor people, people will misunderstand the main and high duty of monks and nuns, that is, to teach morals to people. Teaching morals to people is the noblest job that earns reverence from deities and demons because it creates a huge blessing.
Let us consider another example of evil deeds. For example, there was a man who sneaked into somebody else’s house to steal something. When we investigated his case, we discovered what he was stolen used to raise his parents, wife, and children. Because he was too poor and didn’t have any job, he ventured to take others’ things. So, we did not criticize his much because his action did not corrupt others’ morals, and maybe some people were feeling sorry for him because he felt into the hazardous situation that forced him to commit this crime. But drug traffickers were condemned vehemently. Why is that so? – Because they entice people to have an addiction; and when people get addicted, they will dare to do anything bad.
So, there are two kinds of the worst sinners. One is those who propagate evil things to corrupt others’ morals; and the other is drug traffickers, who make others have an addiction, then their morals will be corrupted. These kinds of people cannot pay for their sin even they are fired because their sin is too egregious.
Here, we have two opposite things: We earn a little blessing when giving someone ten kg or rice and commit a venial sin when stealing something from someone. We receive a huge blessing when teaching morals to people, and commit grievous sin when corrupting morals of others. It is when we analyze good and evil from superficially to deeply. So, as Buddhists, we should consider the level of doing charity.