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Below are some titles from the Buddhist Publication Society that are neither Wheels, Bodhi Leaves, nor Newsletter cover essays.
The books listed below are all available for you to read online right now, by clicking on the title. The information in parentheses following the title includes: the publication date of the printed edition upon which the transcription is based, the size of the file in kBytes, and an estimated page count for the text when printed with a typical web browser (e.g., Netscape with a 12-point Palatino font). The actual number of printed pages you get may vary considerably from this figure.
Download the complete set of books listed below
- The Book of Protection (Paritta) translated and explained by Piyadassi Thera (1999; 200k/67pp.)
An ancient anthology of paritta (protection) suttas translated into English: discourses of the Buddha commonly recited for protection against fear, illness, and misfortune. An introductory essay explains the value of paritta recitation for physical and mental health.
- Buddhism in a Nutshell by Narada Thera (1982; 111k/37pp.)
An excellent introductory overview of the fundamental principles of Buddhist doctrine. Topics covered include: the life of the Buddha, the Dhamma (Is it a philosophy? A religion? An ethical system?), the Four Noble Truths, the Law of Kamma, Rebirth, Dependent Origination, Anatta, and Nibbana. Recommended for beginners.
- A Buddhist Response to Contemporary Dilemmas of Human Existence, by Bhikkhu Bodhi (1994)
In this essay, presented at an interfaith conference in Sri Lanka, the author describes the "radical secularization" of human life that lies at the root of the manifold social problems in the modern world. Religious fundamentalism and spiritual eclecticism have emerged as two counterproductive reactions to this state of affairs. The author enumerates several fundamental tasks that practitioners from all the world's great religions must undertake as part of a sane response to the current crisis.
A Comprehensive Manual of Abhidhamma (Excerpt -- Introduction only) ed. by Bhikkhu Bodhi (1993; 61k/20pp)
This is the Introduction to the 1993 revision of Narada Mahathera's 1956 classic guidebook to Abhidhamma philosophy, A Manual of Abhidhamma. The Introduction provides an outline of Abhidhamma philosophy and of the seven books within the Abdhidhamma Pitaka and describes the relationship between the Abhidhamma and the suttas.
- The Noble Eightfold Path: The Way to the End of Suffering by Bhikkhu Bodhi (1994; first published in 1984 as WH 308/311; 238k/79pp)
Using simple and clear language, the author presents a concise yet thorough explanation of the Eightfold Path, the practical method the Buddha prescribed to uproot and eliminate the underlying causes of suffering. Basing himself solidly upon the Buddha's own words, the author examines each factor of the path to determine exactly what it implies in the way of practical training. Finally, in the concluding chapter, he shows how all eight factors of the path function together to bring about the realization of the Buddhist goal: enlightenment and liberation.
- The Progress of Insight: A Modern Treatise on Buddhist Satipatthana Meditation by Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw (1994; 102k/34pp.)
Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw, the late Burmese meditation master, helped to spearhead the modern popular revival of satipatthana (mindfulness) meditation. Having combined extensive knowledge of the Buddhist scriptures with practical experience, he organized the complex workings of mindfulness meditation into a systematic method that is now widely taught and practiced at lay retreat centers around the world.
- Ven. Balangoda Ananda Maitreya: A Personal Appreciation, by Bhikkhu Bodhi (1998; 22k/7pp.)
Bhikkhu Bodhi recounts with fond appreciation his years with the late Ven. Ananda Maitreya (1896-1998), Sri Lanka's highest-ranking and widely-venerated scholar-monk. (Also included: a newspaper account of the state funeral for Ven. Ananda Maitreya.)
- The Way of Mindfulness: The Satipatthana Sutta and Its Commentary, by Soma Thera (1999; 440k/147pp.)
A translation of the Satipatthana Sutta, the Discourse on the Foundations of Mindfulness, together with its classical commentaries. This handbook contains a wealth of essential source material for the practice of insight meditation.
Revised: Fri 3 December 1999