Aṅguttara Nikāya

The Book of the Eights

35. Rebirth on Account of Giving

“Bhikkhus, there are these eight kinds of rebirth on account of giving. What eight?

(1) “Here, someone gives a gift to an ascetic or a brahmin: food and drink; clothing and vehicles; garlands, scents, and unguents; bedding, dwellings, and lighting. Whatever he gives, he expects something in return. He sees affluent khattiyas, affluent brahmins, or affluent householders enjoying themselves furnished and endowed with the five objects of sensual pleasure. It occurs to him: ‘Oh, with the breakup of the body, after death, may I be reborn in companionship with affluent khattiyas, affluent brahmins, or affluent householders!’ He sets his mind on this, fixes his mind on this, and develops this state of mind. That aspiration of his, resolved on what is inferior, not developed higher, leads to rebirth there. With the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in companionship with affluent khattiyas, affluent brahmins, or affluent householders—and that is for one who is virtuous, I say, not for one who is immoral. The heart’s wish of one who is virtuous succeeds because of his purity.

(2) “Someone else gives a gift to an ascetic or a brahmin: food and drink … and lighting. Whatever he gives, he expects something in return. He has heard: ‘The devas ruled by the four great kings are long-lived, beautiful, and abound in happiness.’ It occurs to him: ‘Oh, with the breakup of the body, after death, may I be reborn in companionship with the devas ruled by the four great kings!’ He sets his mind on this, fixes his mind on this, and develops this state of mind. That aspiration of his, resolved on what is inferior, not developed higher, leads to rebirth there. With the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in companionship with the devas ruled by the four great kings—and that is for one who is virtuous, I say, not for one who is immoral. The heart’s wish of one who is virtuous succeeds because of his purity.

(3)–(7) “Someone else gives a gift to an ascetic or a brahmin: food and drink … and lighting. Whatever he gives, he expects something in return. He has heard: ‘The Tāvatiṃsa devas … the Yāma devas … the Tusita devas … the devas who delight in creation … the devas who control what is created by others are long-lived, beautiful, and abound in happiness.’ It occurs to him: ‘Oh, with the breakup of the body, after death, may I be reborn in companionship with the devas who control what is created by others!’ He sets his mind on this, fixes his mind on this, and develops this state of mind. That aspiration of his, resolved on what is inferior, not developed higher, leads to rebirth there. With the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in companionship with the devas who control what is created by others—and that is for one who is virtuous, I say, not for one who is immoral. The heart’s wish of one who is virtuous succeeds because of his purity.

(8) “Someone else gives a gift to an ascetic or a brahmin: food and drink … and lighting. Whatever he gives, he expects something in return. He has heard: ‘The devas of Brahmā’s company are long-lived, beautiful, and abound in happiness.’ It occurs to him: ‘Oh, with the breakup of the body, after death, may I be reborn in companionship with the devas of Brahmā’s company!’ He sets his mind on this, fixes his mind on this, and develops this state of mind. That aspiration of his, resolved on what is inferior, not developed higher, leads to rebirth there. With the breakup of the body, after death, he is reborn in companionship with the devas of Brahmā’s company—and that is for one who is virtuous, I say, not for one who is immoral; for one without lust, not for one with lust. The heart’s wish of one who is virtuous succeeds because of his purity.

“These, bhikkhus, are the eight kinds of rebirth on account of giving.”