Metta Sutta, finding it

How would I find the Metta Sutta through the navigation on the upper left. My regrets that this is probably a rookie question. I’m new to the suttas and this site. Thank you.


Greetings Patricia and welcome to the forum :slightly_smiling_face:
All rookie questions are very welcome. In the future please post them in q&a or in the water cooler. There they will get proper attention. I’ll move the question starting a new thread for you :slightly_smiling_face:


Hi Patricia,

Welcome - I moved your question to q&a. I also made it into its own thread so that it’s more visible.

To answer your question: I hope that someone with expertise will help you understand the column on the left. For me it still involves a lot of unskilful guesswork, so I won’t go there. I found the Metta Sutta for your by typing “This is what should be done” (with double quote marks) into the search field, top right, and got a direct hit here.

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Good question actually. Many people don’t know that there are several metta suttas, so ideally a search should be able to locate all of them ([SN 46.54] SN 46.62, AN 4.125-126, AN 7.62, AN 8.1, AN 11.15, Snp 1.8, Kp9, Iti22).


The very famous of the various Mettasuttas, whose full name is Karaṇīyamettasutta, is found in two collections: the Khuddakapāṭha and Suttanipāta. To get to it…

  1. Click on the green circle to the right of SUTTA.
  2. Click on the green circle to the right of MINOR.
  3. Click on the green circle to the right of Khuddaka Nikāya.
  4. Click on Khuddakapāṭha.
  5. Scroll down to Metta Sutta.
  6. Click on any of the five English translations. Those of Ñāṇamoli and Ānandajoti are good; those of Piyadassi and Buddharakkhita middling; and that of the Amaravati Sangha rather poor.

Note that these direction are for the Sutta Central page, not for the forum, ie the discuss and discover site (this one) :slightly_smiling_face:

To get to the sutta central page from here click on the lotus icon top left, and then on the next page click on the dhamma wheel icon top left. From that point follow Ven Dhammanandos instructions :slightly_smiling_face:

Have fun and enjoy, and feel free to ask whatever you would like to know


Just so you know, the developers recognize that the current search function is not always useful. I did a search for metta sutta and it was about 75 results down before even a different metta sutta showed up.

However if you do a google search restricting to the site, the first three results will get you what you want: metta sutta

Failing that, doing a google search for a sutta just to get the citation would be another way if you know the structure of the canon.


@karl_lew might like to tell us some of the wonderful changes that are in store down the road?


Anagarika Sabbamitta and I have been working on scv-bilara search. We are already at version 1.1.3, so it is stable enough to incorporate into Voice.

It is also stable enough to be used on its own–if you have a Linux system. One of our long-term goals is to develop Voice offline, and for this we needed the EBTs offline. Bilara-data has all the segmented EBTs. If you have a Linux system, you can install scv-bilara, which has a search script that searches bilara-data:

For example to read a sutta:

./scripts/search mn1

To see just the English lines of the sutta:

./scripts/search mn1 -ol1

To see one segment:

./scripts/search mn1:171.4

To find all occurrences of root of suffering:

./scripts/search root of suffering

To get Markdown links for root of suffering:

./scripts/search root of suffering -om1

Do you have Linux? If not, Voice 2.0 will be released next month with many of the features of scv-bilara. I.e., it won’t return Markdown links, but it will find the root of suffering.


BTW. Here is how scv-bilara finds Metta Sutta in 0.123 seconds:

pattern      : "mettasutta" grep:\b(m|ṁ|ṃ)e(t|ṭ)(t|ṭ)(a|ā)s(u|ū)(t|ṭ)(t|ṭ)(a|ā)
languages    : translation:en search:pli minLang:2
output       : human color:201 elapsed:0.123s maxDoc:50
found        : segs:4 by:phrase mlDocs:4 docs:4 an7.62,an8.1,an11.15,sn46.62
----------------------- doc:1/4 sn46.62 score:1.200 -----------------------
scid: sn46.62:0.3
 pli: 62. Mettāsutta 
  en: 62. Love 
----------------------- doc:2/4 an11.15 score:1.125 -----------------------
scid: an11.15:0.3
 pli: 15. Mettāsutta 
  en: 15. The Benefits of Love 
----------------------- doc:3/4 an8.1 score:1.029 -----------------------
scid: an8.1:0.3
 pli: 1. Mettāsutta 
  en: 1. The Benefits of Love 
----------------------- doc:4/4 an7.62 score:1.017 -----------------------
scid: an7.62:0.3
 pli: 62. Mettasutta 
  en: 62. Don’t Fear Good Deeds

For anyone interested, I came across this page with several metta sutta translations, some definitely better (more literally accurate) than others. I prefer Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translation.
This compilation was originally from the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies website, put together by Andy Olendzki .




I suggest indexing the suttas by their popular names if it hasn’t been done already.


scv-bilara will search using Pali, romanized Pali, English or a third language if configured. For example, one can search for English title:

Or for German title:

Having multiple ways to get to the same sutta provides the greatest flexibility of search thanks to the segmented structure of bilara-data. It allows us to search for content directly as if it were all indexed.


Right now scv-bilara can’t find the Mettasutta, the Karaniyamettasutta, that is in Snp 1.8 and in KP 9 in the canon. SCV-bilara search does only search segmented texts, and neither the Suttanipata nor the Khuddakapatha are available in segmented form right now.

It’s interesting however that there are other results in the already segmented parts of the canon (i.e. the four main Nikayas). :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


:open_mouth: We lost the love? :broken_heart:
:thinking: Then one day we shall have to find it! :heart:


We will, no worries! :heart: :grinning:


Thank you Viveka. I will post under the water cooler. My apologies!


Thank you everyone else for your excellent input! I love understanding the hierarchy of things so the directions on how to find it on Sutta Central without using search filled my need for that. However, the directions on how to search also filled my need to find things quickly before I can understand the hierarchy. Thanks again all!


it can also be helpful to browse through what is in the Sutta Central index under ‘metta’.