the numerical discourses of the buddha

image description
Look inside

“A priceless gift.”—Joseph Goldstein, author of A Heart Full of Peace and One Dharma

 

“No other living scholar has made a contribution of such magnitude to the translation of Buddhist scriptures into a modern language.”—The Khyentse Foundation

THE NUMERICAL DISCOURSES OF THE BUDDHA

A Translation of the Aṅguttara Nikāya

Bhikkhu Bodhi

Like the River Ganges flowing down from the Himalayas, the entire Buddhist tradition flows down to us from the teachings and deeds of the historical Buddha, who lived and taught in India during the fifth century B.C.E. To ensure that his legacy would survive the ravages of time, his direct disciples compiled records of the Buddha’s teachings soon after his passing. In the Theravāda Buddhist tradition, which prevails in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia, these records are regarded as the definitive “word of the Buddha.” Preserved in Pāli, an ancient Indian language closely related to the language that the Buddha spoke, this full compilation of texts is known as the Pāli Canon.

At the heart of the Buddha’s teaching were the suttas (Sanskrit sūtras), his discourses and dialogues. If we want to find out what the Buddha himself actually said, these are the most ancient sources available to us. The suttas were compiled into collections called “Nikāyas,” of which there are four, each organized according to a different principle. The Dīgha Nikāya consists of longer discourses; the Majjhima Nikāya of middle-length discourses; the Saṃyutta Nikāya of thematically connected discourses; and the Aṅguttara Nikāya of numerically patterned discourses.

The present volume, which continues Wisdom’s famous Teachings of the Buddha series, contains a full translation of the Aṅguttara Nikāya. The Aṅguttara arranges the Buddha’s discourses in accordance with a numerical scheme intended to promote retention and easy comprehension. In an age when writing was still in its infancy, this proved to be the most effective way to ensure that the disciples could grasp and replicate the structure of a teaching.

In 2013, Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi was awarded the 2013 Khyentse Foundation Prize for Outstanding Translation.

Click here to return to the Teachings of the Buddha series.

book information
  • Hardcover
  • 1944 pages, 5.50 x 8.75 inches
  • $75
  • ISBN 9781614290407
  • ebook
  • 1944 pages
  • $39.99
  • ISBN 9781614290445
about the author
The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha

Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi is an American Buddhist monk from New York City, born in 1944. He obtained a BA in philosophy from Brooklyn College and a PhD in philosophy from Claremont Graduate School. After completing his university studies he traveled to Sri Lanka, where he received novice ordination in 1972 and full ordination in 1973, both under the leading Sri Lankan scholar-monk, Ven. Balangoda Ananda Maitreya (1896-1998). From 1984 to 2002 he was the editor for the Buddhist Publication Society in Kandy, where he lived for ten years with the senior German monk, Ven. Nyanaponika Thera (1901-1994), at the Forest Hermitage. He returned to the U.S. in 2002. He currently lives and teaches at Chuang Yen Monastery in Carmel, New York. Ven. Bodhi has many important publications to his credit, either as author, translator, or editor. These include The Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha (Majjhima Nikaya, 1995), The Connected Discourses of the Buddha (Samyutta Nikaya, 2000), and The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha (Anguttara Nikaya, 2012). In 2008, together with several of his students, Ven. Bodhi founded Buddhist Global Relief, a nonprofit supporting hunger relief, sustainable agriculture, and education in countries suffering from chronic poverty and malnutrition.

Other books by Bhikkhu Bodhi:
Buddhist Suttas for Recitation
Abhidhamma Studies
The Connected Discourses of the Buddha
The Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha
In the Buddha’s Words
The Buddha’s Teachings on Social and Communal Harmony
Great Disciples of the Buddha
The Suttanipata

There are no products in your cart.