Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

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Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SamKR » Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:25 am

Hello everyone,

If you have to choose one Dhamma book to give as a gift to somebody (who is relatively new to Buddhism but already knows the basics, and is serious about Dhamma) which one would you choose?

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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby Ben » Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:34 am

Hmm...
Still I think it depends on the individual and their proclivities.
"Heart of Buddhist Meditation" by Nyanaponika Thera is a classic and would be up near the top of the list of titles I would consider giving.
kind regards

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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:38 am

Greetings,

Either a sutta anthology like Bodhi's "In The Buddha's Words", or Thanissaro's "Wings To Awakening"... or one of those classic Theravada introductions like Walpola Rahula's "What The Buddha Taught" or Narada's "The Buddha & His Teachings".

Alternatively, if approaching it from a meditation perspective, I'd concur with Ben's recommendation.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby cooran » Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:23 am

Hello Sam,

I would choose Walpola Rahula's "What The Buddha Taught".

with metta
Chris
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---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby Saijun » Mon Aug 29, 2011 3:05 pm

Hello friends,

I would (and have) given many, many copies of Ajahn Lee's Keeping the Breath in Mind and Lessons in Samadhi to those with interest in meditation, but not necessarily Buddhist doctrine. For someone more oriented to the Suttas, or farther down the road, I would go with Wings to Awakening or the volumes of Handful of Leaves.

Metta and Anjali,

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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SamKR » Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:28 pm

Thank you Ben, retrofuturist, cooran, and Saijun.

If I should believe in reviews, Bhikkhu Bodhi's "In the Buddha's Words: An Anthology of Discourses from the Pali Canon" is highly rated in amazon. I have read a part of it and liked it. http://www.amazon.com/Buddhas-Words-Ant ... 779&sr=8-1
Other books as suggested above also have very good reviews.

Both doctrine/sutta-oriented or meditation-oriented books are fine. I would like to have more recommendations from other members.

Thanks a lot.

:anjali:
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SDC » Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:52 pm

retrofuturist wrote: a sutta anthology like Bodhi's "In The Buddha's Words"


I second this.

It was my first book after I learned the basics. Excellent place to start in my opinion.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Aug 29, 2011 10:03 pm

SamKR wrote:Thank you Ben, retrofuturist, cooran, and Saijun.

If I should believe in reviews, Bhikkhu Bodhi's "In the Buddha's Words: An Anthology of Discourses from the Pali Canon" is highly rated in amazon. I have read a part of it and liked it. http://www.amazon.com/Buddhas-Words-Ant ... 779&sr=8-1

And you can read the whole front matter and first chapter here:

http://www.wisdompubs.org/Pages/display ... ch&image=1
The review PDF there is also interesting:
Thanissaro Bhikkhu is gradually working
towards an alternative English translation
of the Pali Canon, and each new text
he translates is published for free distribution
and placed on the Internet (accesstoinsight.
org) for free downloading. Because
of their preference for working in cyberspace,
the younger generation of dhamma
enthusiasts is widely using this version of
the Tipitaka. ....

Younger generation of dhamma enthusiasts...

Hmmm.... :thinking:

:anjali:
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Aug 29, 2011 10:37 pm

Greetings Mike,

I wonder if they've seen how many link referrals come to their site come via forum discussions.

:geek:

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby Epistemes » Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:52 am

I am really enjoying Thich Nhat Hanh's Old Path White Clouds. I think this book combines the best of biography with strong elements from the Tipitaka.
The wind spins without end,
one moment southward,
the next moment northward.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby alan » Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:13 am

Hi Sam
Is it possible for someone relatively new to Buddhism to understand the basics? Seems improbable. How would that person know they were serious?
And why only one book?
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby alan » Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:28 am

Sorry if that response seems pedantic, but your question may have been framed inaccurately.
How about this: which books would you give to someone who has expressed an interest in Buddhism, seems serious, and has demonstrated a desire to learn more?
If that is your question, I'd advise reading Ayya Khemma.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SamKR » Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:07 am

alan wrote:Hi Sam
Is it possible for someone relatively new to Buddhism to understand the basics? Seems improbable. How would that person know they were serious?
And why only one book?


Hi alan,

My bad English! Thanks for pointing out my mistake. Being a non-native speaker of English I tend to think first in my language and then translate that to English.
Actually I meant to say someone who has been introduced to Buddhism recently and so not completely new. After knowing the basics such person can be serious and may want to know more in depth.

One book because I wanted to see which book you recommend the most -- to make myself easy to choose a few books based on the recommendations.

alan wrote:Sorry if that response seems pedantic, but your question may have been framed inaccurately.
How about this: which books would you give to someone who has expressed an interest in Buddhism, seems serious, and has demonstrated a desire to learn more?
If that is your question, I'd advise reading Ayya Khemma.


Yes, your sentence is better. Thanks.
Last edited by SamKR on Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby David2 » Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:15 am

You've already got very good recommendations.
One more title for the meditation aspect:
"Mindfulness in plain English"
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0861719069/ref ... 258&sr=8-1
:anjali:
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SamKR » Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:20 am

David2 wrote:You've already got very good recommendations.
One more title for the meditation aspect:
"Mindfulness in plain English"
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0861719069/ref ... 258&sr=8-1
:anjali:


Yes, I already got good recommendations. But still it's better to know about more books which are considered good. :) Actually, I plan to read those books myself (if I have not already read) before giving as gifts.
Thanks for your suggestion.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby Ben » Tue Aug 30, 2011 7:22 am

Hi Sam
If you are looking for something for yourself, then I recommend you get Ven Analayo's masterpiece "Satipatthana: the direct route to realization".
kind regards

Ben
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- Hereclitus


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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby SamKR » Tue Aug 30, 2011 6:28 pm

Ben wrote:Hi Sam
If you are looking for something for yourself, then I recommend you get Ven Analayo's masterpiece "Satipatthana: the direct route to realization".
kind regards

Ben


Thanks Ben, I will find that book too. I am looking for something to give as a gift but before that I want to read it myself as well.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby alan » Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:02 am

Analayo's book is too difficult for beginners.
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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby Ben » Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:27 am

That's right Alan. That is why I recommended it to Sam for himself.
kind regards

Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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Re: Which Dhamma book would you choose as a gift?

Postby fig tree » Thu Sep 01, 2011 6:58 am

The Life of the Buddha by Nanamoli Thera, good in various ways. It's primarily excerpts from the canon and the commentaries, the most biographical parts. It's an enjoyable read. One of the chapters was distributed on its own as a primer in Buddhism. It seems to me it would be good for a beginner.

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