In Buddhist tradition, when someone dies, the remaining his/her relatives or friends, in dedication to him/her, offer gifts to the Sanga (monks) or moral lay people and they transfer merit to him/her (the departed) (seen in the duty of sons/daughters in Singalovāda-sutta, the duty of relatives in Tirokudda Sutta & also Brahmin tradition in Jānussonī-sutta)
In Milindapanhā, it says that there are four types of Petas (hungry ghosts): (1) vantāsika, (2) khuppipāsī, (3) nijjhāmataṇhika, and (4) paradattūpajīvī. Of four types, the only Paradattūpajīvī-peta can receive the offerings of merit from his/her relatives or friends.
In the concept of Pattidāna & Pattānumodana, when someone shares merit (Pattidāna), anyone can gain the merit if they rejoice (Pattānumodana).
It is seen that someone dies abroad, the remaining relatives offer gifts to monks and lay-people in their hometown in dedication to the departed (let say the dead is reborn as a Paradattūpajīvī-peta)
I have some questions:
- When relatives or friends dedicating to him/her, offer gifts in Sri Lanka and transfer merit from Sri Lanka to him/her, is he/she, who was born as a Paradattūpajīvī-peta in America, able to gain the offerings of merit?
- If he can gain, how? If he cannot, why not?
- In other words, can Paradattūpajīvī-peta receives the offerings of the merit which is done by his/her relatives or friends if he/she was not in the offering ceremony or if he/she did not know the offerings for him/her?
I have searched this information and read some suttas such as Jāṇussonī and Tirokuḍḍa but I cannot get the answer. So please, share what you have in detail.