Pietistic, salvationist, and escapist tendencies have contaminated the transmission and practice of the Dharma since early times, due to social and political accommodation. These are insidious manifestations of the innate wrong views of separation (self-grasping) and supremacy (self-cherishing).
In the doctrines of Karma and Interdependence, we find their correction in the indisputable affirmation of individual and collective freedom and the radical equality of all sentient beings.
A disciple of the Noble Ones, abandoning the taking of life, abstains from taking life. In doing so, he gives freedom from danger, freedom from animosity, freedom from oppression to limitless numbers of beings. In giving freedom from danger, freedom from animosity, freedom from oppression to limitless numbers of beings, he gains a share in limitless freedom from danger, freedom from animosity, and freedom from oppression.
This is the first gift, the first great gift —original, long-standing, traditional, ancient, untainted, unadulterated from the beginning— that is not open to suspicion, will never be open to suspicion, and is praised by knowledgeable contemplatives and sages.