Monks, don’t be afraid of acts of merit. This is another way of saying what is blissful, desirable, pleasing, endearing, charming — that is, acts of merit.
The Buddha, Itivuttaka 22
One of the ways the Buddha explained Buddhist life was in terms of merit:
- Dana: giving material things and giving the Dhamma
- Sila: virtue, including keeping the precepts
- Bhavana: developing the mind, especially through meditation
Collecting merit simply means building up good kamma by doing good things. As Buddhists we know that there are so many different ways to be happy through doing good actions. By correctly understanding this we can be sure to have a rich spiritual life.
If we forget this three-fold nature of merit then it is possible that our spiritual life will go out of balance.