Jealousy not only makes us unhappy, but it also has more negative results. Thirumoolar, the Saivite saint, says that we should not harbour envious thoughts in our minds. If we are envious, the beneficial effects of our good deeds get reduced.

In other words, our punyas are depleted. Moreover, a portion of the sins of the person who is the object of our envy, gets transferred to us. So now we not only have a situation wherein some of our punyas are lost, but also one in which someone else's sins are transferred to us. Is such a state desirable?

This double punishment can be avoided, if we are not jealous of anyone. We must have the awareness that our blessings in this birth are due to our deeds in previous births, said R. Narayanan, in a discourse. If we don't lack food in this birth, it must be because we gave food generously to others, in a previous birth. And we must take our cue from that, and in this birth, we must offer food everyday to others. If we do not offer food to others, but consume everything that we cook, ourselves, then in the next birth, we will be needy ourselves. When we give, our generosity must not be bound by any restrictions.

We must not discriminate against people on the basis of whether they are close to us, or not. We should be equally generous with everyone. When we have prepared food, we must not be in a hurry to eat. We must wait to see if someone turns up, with whom we can share our food. If we are miserly, in our next birth, we will be paupers. Look at the crow. Does a crow ever eat anything, without summoning all other crows? The moment it finds something to eat, it calls out to its kin. If a bird can be so concerned about the welfare of other birds, can we, human beings, not be more considerate?

Diseases and sorrows are kept at bay by our generosity. Danger from venomous creatures like snakes is averted. When we talk of nurture, the act of nurturing encompasses trees as well. Those who are not generous, and those who do not nurture trees, will go to hell, according to Thirumoolar. The Lord is happier when we provide food to His devotees, than when we offer Him something.

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