Book recommendations

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
cookiemonster
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Book recommendations

Postby cookiemonster » Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:24 am

Greetings!

I just finished reading Bhikku Bodhi's book "In the Buddha's Words" as my introduction to Theravada Buddhism, and I'm looking for suggestions for what I should read next. Any and all suggestions are welcome!

Thank you.

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Paul Davy
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Paul Davy » Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:26 am

Greetings,

See:

Introductory Resources
viewtopic.php?f=24&t=148

Metta,
Retro. :)
What is the final conviction that comes when radical attention is razor-edge sharp? That the object of the mind is mind-made (manomaya). (Ven. Ñāṇananda)

Having understood name-and-form, which is a product of prolificity,
And which is the root of all malady within and without,
He is released from bondage to the root of all maladies,
That Such-like-one is truly known as 'the one who has understood'.
(Snp 3.6)

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Ben
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Ben » Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:27 am

Have a look at the Introductory Resources thread in the Discovering Theravada forum.
There is also a thread titled "What Dhamma book are you reading now?" - that should give you some excellent resources to check out.
kind regards,

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
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Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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cookiemonster
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby cookiemonster » Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:28 am

That was quick, retro & Ben!

Thank you for the link, I actually saw it earlier. I suppose I am looking for more of a single suggestion instead of a list of suggestions :)

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SDC
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby SDC » Thu Oct 17, 2013 3:00 am

Early on I would always be reading one of the nikayas along with one or two other contemporary books.

I would recommend getting a copy of the Majjhima Nikaya to start. As far as specific contemporary books, just pick one. You'll like some and not like others, but it helps you get an idea about how you feel about the various approaches to the dhamma.

SamBodhi
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby SamBodhi » Thu Oct 17, 2013 4:19 am

I think that asking more than one person for a single book is probably going to give you a list of more than one book.

I would personally recommend Bhante Henepola's Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness.


with Metta,
SamBodhi
"An inward-staying
unentangled knowing,
All outward-going knowing
cast aside."
--Upasika Kee Nanayon

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Paul Davy
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Paul Davy » Thu Oct 17, 2013 4:30 am

Greetings,

SamBodhi wrote:I think that asking more than one person for a single book is probably going to give you a list of more than one book.

:lol:

Metta,
Retro. :)
What is the final conviction that comes when radical attention is razor-edge sharp? That the object of the mind is mind-made (manomaya). (Ven. Ñāṇananda)

Having understood name-and-form, which is a product of prolificity,
And which is the root of all malady within and without,
He is released from bondage to the root of all maladies,
That Such-like-one is truly known as 'the one who has understood'.
(Snp 3.6)

cookiemonster
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby cookiemonster » Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:48 pm

Thank you all for your suggestions!

sambodhi: yes, I knew I would probably get recommendations for more than one book - I just wanted to see what everyone thought was the most important one, to each :)

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Kamran
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Kamran » Fri Oct 18, 2013 1:23 am

WINGS TO AWAKENING Anthology is the best from a meditation practitioners perspective imo

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... index.html

Many anthologies of the Buddha's teachings have appeared in English, but this is the first to be organized around the set of teachings that the Buddha himself said formed the heart of his message: the Wings to Awakening (bodhi-pakkhiya-dhamma).
"Silence gives answers"

Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi

SarathW
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby SarathW » Tue Oct 22, 2013 3:43 am

The Only Way
(Path to Nibbana)
[Complete Edition]

By Venerable Ajahn Tong Sirimangalo


http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j ... 3115,d.dGI
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

SamBodhi
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby SamBodhi » Tue Oct 22, 2013 3:27 pm

cookiemonster wrote:Thank you all for your suggestions!

sambodhi: yes, I knew I would probably get recommendations for more than one book - I just wanted to see what everyone thought was the most important one, to each :)


:)

I would also suggest reading Bhikkhu Bodhi's book again. I have it and have read it a little here and there at least twice. It's definitely worth a second look. I also would encourage you to look at the other resources listed above. There are ebook versions of accesstoinsight's sutta pitaka available (or they were the last time I looked). And the teachers who have written basic, simple explanations of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path have done a really great job of keeping things within the context of the Suttas, while developing an "accessible" piece of writing. The author I mentioned (Bhante Henepola) has a book called Mindfulness in Plain English, which is available for free now and it is also a great introduction to meditation. I found these in the same threads above and they were worth the few extra minutes it took to dig them up.

All that being said, the most important book to me is still the one I mentioned in my first post on this topic:
Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness by Bhante Henepola.


with Metta,
SamBodhi
"An inward-staying
unentangled knowing,
All outward-going knowing
cast aside."
--Upasika Kee Nanayon

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BlindJoeDeath
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby BlindJoeDeath » Tue Oct 22, 2013 9:59 pm

I'd also like to recommend Thanissaro's "Wings to Awakening"

cookiemonster
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby cookiemonster » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:05 am

Thanks again, everyone, for your recommendations.

I ended up picking up Ajahn Brahm's book "Mindfulness, Bliss and Beyond" and throughly enjoyed it. I then read through Glen Wallis' translation of the Dhammapada and I loved it! I'm now re-reading Bodhi's anthology I mentioned in the OP.

After this, I've decided to read through the Nikayas. Any recommendations on which Collection I should read first, second, etc.? Thank you.

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Paul Davy
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Paul Davy » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:13 am

Greetings,

cookiemonster wrote:After this, I've decided to read through the Nikayas. Any recommendations on which Collection I should read first, second, etc.? Thank you.

If you're committed to reading the lot, I'd go SN, MN, AN, and then maybe DN if you could be bothered.

If you're only going to read one, I'd go with MN, or possibly SN... or one of the anthologies mentioned by others.

Metta,
Retro. :)
What is the final conviction that comes when radical attention is razor-edge sharp? That the object of the mind is mind-made (manomaya). (Ven. Ñāṇananda)

Having understood name-and-form, which is a product of prolificity,
And which is the root of all malady within and without,
He is released from bondage to the root of all maladies,
That Such-like-one is truly known as 'the one who has understood'.
(Snp 3.6)

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Mkoll
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby Mkoll » Wed Dec 04, 2013 8:27 pm

If you're interested in the historical aspect of Buddhism, I suggest the Foundations of Buddhism by Professor Rupert Gethin as a solid introduction. Knowledge of historical context is a great advantage offered by modern scholarship.

http://www.watflorida.org/documents/The ... n_1998.pdf
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

fivebells
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby fivebells » Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:25 pm

cookiemonster, if you haven't yet looked at Wings to Awakening: An Anthology from the Pali Canon, you might find it a useful place to start any survey of the canon.

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bodom
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby bodom » Wed Dec 04, 2013 10:59 pm

See here:

Recommended reading
viewtopic.php?f=41&t=341

:anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah

cookiemonster
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Re: Book recommendations

Postby cookiemonster » Thu Dec 05, 2013 1:33 am

Thank you retrofuturist - why do you suggest that particular order?

And, thank you Mkoll, fivebells, and bodom, I will look into your suggestions, but right now I would like to focus on the Nikayas themselves :) Any suggestions on the order I should approach them and why would be appreciated.


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