The Perfection of Generosity - The gift of sounds

All his deeds of generosity contributed to his realization of the four noble Truths when he became the Samma-sambuddha. We read further on about the gifts of the Bodhisatta:

“The gift of sounds (sadda dana) should be understood by way of the sounds of drums, etc.

It is certainly not possible to give a sound as one gives a cluster of lotuses,

tearing it out by its bulbs and roots and placing it in the hands.

But one gives a gift of sound by giving its base.

Thus he makes a gift of sound by presenting a musical instrument,

such as drums or tom toms, to the Triple Gem.”

One may offer a drum for the benefit of a temple as an offering of sound, because it can be used to announce the time, the hours or the watches (of the day and night) and so on. One may play music as an offering of sound to the Triple Gem, by using instruments such as a drum or tom tom. One may arrange for oneself or for someone else to use an instrument such as a drum, with the intention to give sound as an offering.

The Commentary explains further about the ways of offering the gift of sound:

“... by giving medicine for the voice, such as oil and molasses, to preachers of
the Dhamma;

or by announcing a lecture on the Dhamma, chanting the scriptures,

giving a discourse on the Dhamma, holding a discussion,

or expressing appreciation for the good deeds of others."

One may invite people to sit close for a Dhamma discussion or ask others to invite them for this purpose. Also when expressing words of appreciation, anumodana, one can give sound as an offering. When one speaks these words aloud or invites others to join in the expressing of them, one offers the gift of sound. This is a condition for others to also take part in the offering of sound by way of the expression of anumodana.

Topic 277