The Tithing Commitment, part 2
Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami , 2000-03-03
Gurudeva continues to explain the spiritual dimension of the practice of tithing. He talks today about how to approach tithing in regard to your business, and he admonishes those who cleverly create "tithing shelters."
The religions of the world don't look at the tithe that they recieve as a gift. They look at it as a payment. (And,) Those who cannot pay their tithe, more than often, do not pay their creditors.
Now, what if someone has their own business? They tithe on the income that they get from the business and they tithe on the profit they earn within the business itself. Many clever people make tithing shelters and they will only pay themselves [just a little bit] out of their own business. (, just a little bit and)The rest goes for business expense, like the rent, the food and everything - a tithing shelter, so they won't have to give much tithe. Finally, their conscience will come up and hurt and they will straighten out their methodology.
Others are happy to tithe for tax reasons, because they save on taxes. (and)They figure out right to the penny, right to the rupee, how much tax they save by how much they tithe. That is not the spirit of tithing.
Our organisation's devotees tithe. The Singaporeans or the Malaysians get no tax benefits from tithing. They tithe because of their heart and therefore, their punyam, the good merit for that, comes back to them. (, the good merit for that.)
So, we can see it as a spiritual practise, not an intellectual practise. There are those have taken a pledge to do the tithing practise, which is called in Sanskrit, dasamamsa. (And) They use God's money for two or three months to get interest or to pay debts and finally they gather together and tithe, with a great effort. Bargaining and manipulating in that way is not the spirit of dasamamsa.