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Ravi Chandran

Charity according to the modes of nature

Lord Krishna explains about charity. Charity has also been ramified into three modes of nature. Charity brings about a sense of compassion, belonging and responsibility in a person towards society. A person must conscientiously engage in rendering of charity with a resolve to alleviate misery of people according to the best of one’s capacity. Such an inclination of contributing towards society through charity wrecks the ego of a person. Giving charity considering as the prime responsibility without expecting anything in return is a charity in the mode of Satvik Guna.

Charity given with a desire of propitious return tarnishes its sacredness. In the society, there is an eccentric rush to gain fame, affluence, power etc. Persons with sky high desires give lot of charity especially during elections with an aspiration that people’s mandate would make him triumph and then he can lead a powerful life. There are innumerable instances wherein the over ambitious gentlemen with lots of wealth shower charity upon the impoverished and others but carrying meteoric desires of return.
Even otherwise, if a person engages in charity expecting favourable returns then such a charity would also be considered to be in the mode of Rajo Guna (The mode of passion). Deeds performed with an eye on the fruits of actions are definitely in the nature of Rajo Guna.

A charity given to an unworthy person at an improper place and time is a charity in mode of Tamo Guna. An individual after the day’s work earns a meager amount of money. He bears severe hardships to defeat destitution. In order to extenuate the intensity of mental distress, he cultivates the habit of taking alcohol everyday and on some days he would take refuge in drugs.

Once, the person did not have any money to spend on alcohol or drugs. He asks his friend to give him some money. The person’s friend without even asking about the purpose for which money is being borrowed entertains him with finance. A charity was given but the motive of the charity was not pure or welfare oriented. Charity was given to a person who would utilize that it in buying alcohol and later ignite tumult in his household by physically abusing his spouse. Such charity given to an uncouth, worthless person at a sordid place like a bar comes under Tamo Guna ( mode of ignorance).