An Interview in Pali

I’m in awe.


And they say Pali is a dead language!


By far the coolest thing I’ve watched in a long time…thanks for posting :grinning::anjal:


I wonder whether we can recite Sutta like talking language instead of chanting.

What is the purpose of chanting suttas in pali anyway? It isn’t like most people understand it.

And yet it’s so much fun :slight_smile: Both in the listening and the chanting :notes:

Like music then :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:.

But seriously, isn’t it better to chant in the native language? I kind of think that people chant in pali because they think the suttas has some kind of magical power which only works if they recite it in pali (e.g. the Karaniyametta sutta, Mangala sutta).

Edit: by native language I meant the language of the speaker.

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Chanting Sutta in Pali give you the winning age. (not winning and losing)
Sometimes I wish I know Pali then I can learn straight from Sutta.
Learning Buddhism using translation is a difficult task.
Translations are good for the beginners.
Pali is indispensable for the advanced practitioner.
Again if you want to be a teacher the knowledge in Pali is a gift.

What is the winning age?

Best source of understanding is practice. We don’t need to learn pali or a lot of scriptural knowledge to practice. Obverse the 5 precepts, find a quite place then meditate. Having access a good teacher is even better.

Personally I feel listening to a dhamma talk from someone who knows what (s)he is talking about is better than reading about sutta analysis in pali.

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Sutta is the best teacher.

How do you know that the interpretation of the sutta is correct?

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The problem of many teachers is that they give their personal opinion than what is in Sutta.
Again teachers are the very important source if they teach the Sutta.

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That is why I said better to learn Pali.
However, I am not discounting the great translation work of many teachers like Bhikkhu Bodhi, Ven. Thannisaro or our own Bhante Sujato.

Very true. It is subjective but personally I don’t have any problem with it. As long as their teaching is not in conflict with the basic teaching of the Buddha. A lot of sermons by Thai forest teachers don’t have any sutta reference, them seem to talk from experience.

Ermm no, knowing pali does not guarantee that the interpretation of the Dhamma is correct. Dhamma is deep, a sentence could have many meanings. Someone can understand pali but (s)he will not understand what nibbana, jhana, etc. really is until (s)he realized it. The true meaning of Dhamma can only be verified by our own understanding. Until then, it is only views/opinions/interpretations. And the thing about views/opinions/interpretations is that everyone has one.


I agree.

But I also like chanting in Pali because it’s such a positive emotional experience for me. I put it down to conditioning (of lifetimes :wink: ) !

Also, Pali is the common thread for all Southern Buddhist traditions and arguably for all Buddhist traditions. I don’t speak Thai, but if I go to Thailand, I can join in the Sanghadana with relative ease and I can sit and listen to the Anumodana and because I have pretty good idea what is being said, I can rejoice in it! It’s a unifying language.

So I think we should do both :slight_smile:


Any plan on making a side to side interface to the translation at suttacentral with pali on the left and the translation on the right? :smile:

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Lol…I think that’s a brilliant idea…but I reckon it’ll be possible to have that already.

Just have SC open in two windows - one with the English and the other with the Pali. :slight_smile: