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Reading the suttas is fun! - Dhamma Wheel

Reading the suttas is fun!

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
alan
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Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby alan » Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:30 am

I'd like to start a new topic about how reading the suttas can be enjoyable.
I posted this one on another thread:

Can you think of a sutta that you enjoyed reading, and would like to share?
The purpose of this thread is to get people interested in actually reading the suttas for themselves. I know, at first it seems like an impossible task. But you can do it! There are some long slogs, sure. But there are also some very nice passages. For those who have read the suttas, here is an opportunity to share your favorites. If you haven't, I hope this will inspire you to do so. Let's have fun!

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tiltbillings
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:43 am


Reductor
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby Reductor » Sat Jun 25, 2011 6:44 am

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

This is one of my favorites. A faithful disciple spends the night in meditation with the buddha, unaware that his companion is in fact his teacher. The buddha is pleased and gives instruction to him as penetrating today as it was 2500 years ago.

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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby Nyana » Sat Jun 25, 2011 8:11 am


santa100
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby santa100 » Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:48 pm


alan
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby alan » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:33 am

All nice choices. But--
I was looking for those you enjoyed particularly because they were fun to read. Suttas which make you smile, which you've enjoyed for the pleasure of the wordplay, or the memorable imagery. There are two purposes. One is to show people who shy away from reading, who may have convinced themselves that the suttas are just a pile of old bones, that it can actually be enjoyable as well as edifying. The second is because I delight in finding silliness.


For instance, this one struck me right off the top of my head:
Last edited by alan on Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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David N. Snyder
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Jun 26, 2011 3:10 am

Image




rowyourboat
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby rowyourboat » Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:42 am

Hi Alan,

A worthwhile endeavour, my friend! Someone should write a book on the topic- a collection of interesting suttas!

I like the Thera-theri gatha- lots of aesthetic beauty and personal anecdotes. Dhammapada is a close second for it's profound wisdom, hidden in a few simple sentences..
:anjali:

With metta

Matheesha
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha

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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby frank k » Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:04 pm

Wow, there's too many instances and too many suttas to name. I hardly know where to start. An interesting new thing I learned lately, in MN 23, where a non-returner Brahma being approaches Kumara Kassapa and gives him 10 riddles that only the Buddha can explain. It's not in the suttas itself, but there's a very fascinating story behind the connection between that Brahma and Kumara.

In the previous Buddha's dispensation ( Buddha Kassapa ), 5 monks got together and made a pact. Basically, "Nibbana or bust." So they ascended a remote mountain top, and then kicked away the ladder so no one could back out. 3 days later, one of the monks attained arahantship. Another 2 days later, one of the monks attained anagami (non-returner). 3 days later, the other monks died of starvation.
http://www.audtip.org Audio Sutta Recordings

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Kare
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby Kare » Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:36 pm

Which suttas are the best ones?

The question reminds me of a zen koan:

One day Banzan was walking through a market. He overheard a customer say to the butcher, "Give me the best piece of meat you have." "Everything in my shop is the best," replied the butcher. "You can not find any piece of meat that is not the best." At these words, Banzan was enlightened.

:anjali:
Mettāya,
Kåre

alan
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby alan » Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:47 pm

Tangled up.

Kenshou
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby Kenshou » Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:18 pm

I was hoping to post something, but it seems that all the suttas I've noted as favorites are the informative but dry and boring kind. Oh well. Learning is fun, but it's not this kind of fun.

Reductor
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby Reductor » Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:30 pm

My problem too, mostly. I can recall two suttas appropriate for the thread, which don't appear online. Tsk.

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daverupa
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby daverupa » Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:45 pm

(SN 46.53).

This is the sort of delightful Sutta that comes of making a slog through the Samyutta Nikaya - helpfully encouraging advice that introduces the enlightenment factors as a foundation for ones daily practice.

:heart:

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beeblebrox
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby beeblebrox » Sun Jun 26, 2011 8:25 pm


alan
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby alan » Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:15 pm


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adosa
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby adosa » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:30 am

Hi alan,

I don't know if it's fun but the Okkantisamyutta sure is encouraging.

The first is "The Eye" but they all follow the same theme with their definitions of a "faith-follower" and a "dhamma-follower". I have faith that a lot of the good people here fall into either category.

adosa

"To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas" - Dhammapada 183

alan
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby alan » Fri Jul 01, 2011 4:47 am

Stop thief!
[url][/url] http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
See what I mean? this is a fun sutta.

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cooran
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Re: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby cooran » Fri Jul 01, 2011 5:08 am

Hello alan,

Yes - and quite a 'deep' sutta as well.

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---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: Reading the suttas is fun!

Postby phil » Tue Jul 12, 2011 12:45 am

I like your idea, Alan. The usual way of making Dhamma more palatable to newcomers is by introducing cozy elements that don't belong in Dhamma. Easing entry into the tipitika might help...

There are of course no silly suttas, but lots of silly characters. I like Potaliya in MN54. He is out strolling with an elegant parasol when he meets the Buddha, who has gone to the same park for his daily meditation. The Buddha invites Potaliya to have a seat for a talk (imagine that!) but because he is addressed as "householder" Potaliya, who believes he has cut off all worldly affairs by giving his fortune to his children, is miffed and refuses to answer. Happily he eventually gets to learn what cutting off worldly affairs really means.

His pomposity and absurd self-appraisal re the Dhamma is a good reminder. The sutta contains great similes to get at the danger of sensual pleasures. Indeed, until newcomers to Dhamma are ready to accept that sensual pleasures are dangerous according to the Dhamma, Buddhism will be a feelgood plaything...
Kammalakkhano , bhikkhave, bālo, kammalakkhano pandito, apadānasobhanī paññāti
(The fool is characterized by his/her actions/the wise one is characterized by his/her actions/Wisdom shines forth in behaviour.)
(AN 3.2 Lakkhana Sutta)


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