The Status Of The Pali Canon

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The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby Jhana4 » Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:14 pm

Has the entire Pali Canon been translated into English?

If so, have all the translations been done by the same person or group? Has it been translated into other languages?
If not, is it fair to say that the most important parts of the Pali Canon have been translated into English or are there still significant nuggets left to be dug out?

Any opinions about the quality of the various English translations available?


Is the entire Pali Canon online? A significant portion of what is available in English or is there still a long way to go?

Is there a museum one can go to see the actual palm leaf copies of the Pali Canon?
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby Alex123 » Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:29 pm

Jhana4 wrote:Has the entire Pali Canon been translated into English?


Most (and probably the best) of it weres translated into English. Some of the translations are from many decades ago.
If I remember correctly, only few books from KN are not translated (Apadana) or at least I am not aware of any Eng translations. I have read most of sutta pitaka in English.


Generally, the translations by Bhikkhu Bodhi and Ven. Nanamoli seem to be the better ones.


Unfortunately the entire AN that I have, was not perfectly translated by Caroline Rhys Davids, and I find the English of 20-30s to be a bit different. Hopefully a better translation of entire AN by Bhikkhu Bodhi will be available soon.
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:33 pm

Jhana4 wrote:Has the entire Pali Canon been translated into English?


All except about two books from the Abhidhamma and I think one or two from Khuddaka Nikaya.

If so, have all the translations been done by the same person or group?


Pali Text Society http://www.palitext.com/ has the most extensive collection of the entire Canon except about three books. Wisdom Publications has many of the Suttas translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi

Has it been translated into other languages?


Yes.

If not, is it fair to say that the most important parts of the Pali Canon have been translated into English or are there still significant nuggets left to be dug out?


From what I have read and heard, the best stuff is all available in English.

Any opinions about the quality of the various English translations available?


Bhikkhu Bodhi has the best translations, in my opinion.

Is the entire Pali Canon online? A significant portion of what is available in English or is there still a long way to go?


In Pali, but not English. Large parts are available at:

http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?tit ... Pali_Canon
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/

Is there a museum one can go to see the actual palm leaf copies of the Pali Canon?


In Sri Lanka, they continue the tradition of writing the Canon on the leaves and re-doing every year or so, when the leaves start to wilt.
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby Jhana4 » Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:03 pm

Fascinating. I thought that the leaves were plated in gold, so why would wilting be a problem?

I find the writing of the canon on leaves to be interesting. Do you know anything of the technical details? I'm guessing that they don't just pull a green leaf off of a tree and begin grinding a ball point pen into it. Do they use a particular dimension of palm leaf? A particular type? Do they treat the leaves? What tools do they use for the writing?

It is amazing to picture those gold pressed ancient leaves bound together in stacks on one end and the possibility of the entire canon fitting onto a thumb drive on a key chain at the other end.
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:17 pm

Here is a great power point presentation with some photos showing how they write on the ola leaves:

www.justbegood.net/E-Learning/05.3%20The%20Tipitaka.pps
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby Jhana4 » Sat Mar 26, 2011 4:52 pm

That was fantastic. Thank you David!
In reading the scriptures, there are two kinds of mistakes:
One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Posts: 1309
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 5:20 pm
Location: U.S.A., Northeast

Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby gavesako » Sun Mar 27, 2011 5:58 am

This is a good resource: http://www.yellowrobe.com/
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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby Bankei » Tue Mar 29, 2011 12:04 am

gavesako wrote:This is a good resource: http://www.yellowrobe.com/


a quote from that site:

After the Second Buddhist Council, Buddhism had split into two parts: one orthodox (Theravada) and the other unorthodox (Mahayana).


There are some interesting things there but read with a critical eye.

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Re: The Status Of The Pali Canon

Postby David N. Snyder » Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:19 am

Bankei wrote:
gavesako wrote:This is a good resource: http://www.yellowrobe.com/


a quote from that site:

After the Second Buddhist Council, Buddhism had split into two parts: one orthodox (Theravada) and the other unorthodox (Mahayana).


There are some interesting things there but read with a critical eye.

Bankei


That sounds like a pretty big mistake (from the website). The Second Council was held in about 383 BCE. The Mahayana did not develop until about the first century BCE to the first century CE.
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