What is the main difference between paramitha (perfection) and merits (pin/kusal)?

Is it the same? Or is a perfection advance? Or are all perfections a merit whereas all merits are not perfections? Which is what?

3 Answers 3


Nyom Akila,

Actually there is no different at all. One word is merely used in regard of doing (puñña kusala, merits) or in regard of the deeds, while pāramī, perfection, is merely used to object it as the attribute of a person/being, so more often found in parts where there is a seek after the path and more spoken grasping the owner strongly.

It's the deed of merits that form perfection. Either merits nor perfection can be shared like goods but shared be means of letting other take part on deeds, direct or indirect, with it's heart, rejoice in what is conductive for future benefit.

There is merit/perfection needed to gain path and fruits, upanissaya (strong condition cause), but to gain Buddhas ability one needs to gain perfection (more than actually needed for the path and fruits) in all virtures to its highest, so that there are all skills perfect for best possible sharing ones gain in the best way for many in the world, to know all around.

Today are many after becoming a Buddha, yet hardily having the perfection of an "ordinary" disciple, and are not able to perform merits, deeds to gain perfection, that would be enough to even reach the path. That is inasmuch "sad" because we live in a time where the good Dhamma and what counts as skillful and merit, explained by a Buddha, is still avaliable. But this condition (Nissaya) is of cource also a matter of paramis for the individual.

If one has gained perfection needed for the way of Dhamma, latest then one will walk further under leading the holly life.

(Note: This is a gift of Dhamma and not meant for commercial purpose or other wordily gains.)


There are two types of ”päramita” . One is the Srawaka Päramita, and the other is the ”päramita” of the Buddhas. The word,”päramita” comes from “pireema“, or to fulfill. Specially in Asian countries we give 'Ata-pirikara' (Challenger Material ) with the intention of attaining Nibbana one day. It will come to bear fruit in one of the future existences and not in this very lifetime. This giving will help our “Päramitä” commitment to bear fruit in another lifetime to realize the Noble Eightfold Path. At times it can take many, many lifetimes to fulfil a “Päramitä”. It is really the deeply-ingrained habits of a person that are taken from birth to birth, and become “paramitas”. Such dominant paramitas may manifest as one’s character (“gathi”) in a new birth.

The word “paramita” is reserved for those commitments that target Nibbana. You and I are living in a very special time. It is because an aspect of Dhamma that was hidden for over a thousand years, has come to light within the last ten years, and as a result, the next ten years will see many who will realize nibb

This is different to merits that are the result of a good deed. Merits are ‘Punyabhisankhara’. Sharing the merits actually becomes a “visankhara” or “unwinding the power of previous sankhara“. Unlike Päramitä” one can transfer merits. Transfer of merits is efficient when the giver and the receiver are together and each is aware of the other’s intention. For the people in Asia, it is customary to transfer merits to deceased relatives. Alms giving to the Sangha or similar meritorious deed is done and pattidana is offered to the deceased relative.

One always gain merits with punna kriya, but those merits will be much enhanced if one does those with understanding of the anicca nature (here they become true kusala kriya). When one does a punna kriya with increasing understanding of true nature, it starts becoming a kusala kamma with more merit. As the level of understanding improves the merits of any such act will be higher too.


General people do some merits for some resultants that they attached.

The Buddhist people do whole merits and develop themselves to take the better merits, that closer more and more, to enlighten nibbāna. The enlightenment is the best merit.

Whole of these merits are called pāramī (full merit, ultimate merit). Pāramī is not just some part of merits. Pāramī is a full course for an enlightenment, only.

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