SC Next: Introduction to the Suttas

Do you mean the translation work such as Ven. Thannisarao?

Footnotes are a good idea but when they becomes longer than the essay, it is a problem.

As I said:

Here is the Introduction to the SN translation:
Scroll down to “Technical Notes” to see what I mean.


Yes, I will do something like this when I get the time. But I agree that it should be separate from a general survey of the suttas.


Hi Bhante,

I don’t think these are terribly important…just typos really…or possibly even my misreading of them! But anyway…here are a few places that might need a small edit.

Also quick question regarding this:

Is the Metta Sutta not among the earliest strata of texts then?


’Fraid so. It’s not found in other collections, and the metre is a little later than usual. That doesn’t mean it’s definitely not spoken by the Buddha, but it does lower ones’ confidence. The final verse, however, is clearly a later addition.



You’re probably right, but at the same time it would be wonderful to have. I’d be horrified to think of what the world of knowledge would look like if it had to pass an ‘of public interest’ test before coming to be.


I’m thinking less ‘world of knowledge’ but more on the lines of reams of unread PhD type trivia, but I see it might be interesting to some. :slightly_smiling_face:

With metta

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Thank you for giving a glimpse of present-day movements in SEA, this is very valuable. I never heard of Ajahn Kukrit Sotthibalo, I did a quick search and it seems he is also controversial. He has a few publications in English, I will read them. Do you know how is his movement is seen by the Thai Forest tradition?

May I suggest to add Thanissaro Bhikkhu? Just based on the amount of translations he has done and its consistent support of a sutta-based practice. I understand this is not meant to be an exhaustive list though.


I thought the same considering even though I have some concern about his view that there is a consciousness outside the five aggregate. I have my admiration for Ven. Thanissaro for his free publications. My understanding is that he has not translated all the Nikaya as oppose to Bhikkhu Bodhi. I wonder why he stopped his project half way. Perhaps he should translate the whole four Nikaya at least.

A masterful summary! Thank you, Bhante. I am eager to read the translations that you and Bhante Brahmali have prepared for the new Sutta Central site.


Join me.
I am going to start Bhante Sujato’s Sutta translation reading challenge thread.


Just tell me when and how I can join. I’m with you.

Stay tuned to SC.

This article might help

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Well, as the linked article below says, he was kicked out of Wat Pa Pong, so he can’t be all bad!

The “controversy” is that he proposed reciting the patimokkha in its original form, leaving out the sekhiya rules. It’s not about whether someone actually keeps any of the rules, only about whether they are ritually incanted in the proper form.

As for the rest of the forest tradition, I couldn’t say. But they are an ācāriya tradition, and he rejects that, so I can’t imagine they like him all that much.

Thanks for the link. Sanitsuda is in fine form here.

Last week, the junta announced the setting up of a committee to identify problems in Buddhism and come up with policies and measures to tackle them.

As an agency working directly on Buddhist affairs, the National Office of Buddhism has obviously felt the need to show the country’s new boss that it is doing something.

Its priority, however, is not tackling monks’ laxity and rife temple corruption, which has long shaken public trust in the clergy. Instead, its first self-assigned job is to get rid of a popular monk who told his followers to forgo rites and rituals and concentrate instead on the teachings of the Buddha in the Tipitaka scripture.


Ok, I think I get it now: he is abbot of Wat Na Pa Pong (Pathum Thani province); but he trained originally at Wat Nong Pa Pong (Ubon Ratchathani Province, Ajahn Chah’s monastery) and they cut him off in 2014 when he refused to back down. These Thai names are quite confusing :sweat_smile:


Interestingly, the books that he authored seem to be only compilations of suttas , not a single interpretation from him or even introductory paragraphs (e.g.

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Yes, that’s right, you have to look carefully.

I haven’t read them myself, so I couldn’t say if that was true of all his books, but certainly that’s what he’s famous for. What’s incredible is not that he’s putting some suttas in some books, but how popular his movement has become in such a short period of time. We’ve been saying basically the same thing for decades, and making very little impression on the Thai community. But when I was in Perth a couple of years ago, they were all talking about him and reading his books. I guess it takes someone to explain it clearly in Thai, and somehow connect with the zeitgeist.


From my understanding of the Tipiṭaka in Thailand, the Suttas are all translated/written in ราชาศัพท์, or ratchasap (the highly intricate and complex Thai register used with Thai royalty, of which barely anyone speaks or can read).

I’ve always understood that the reason so few Thai people read the Suttas is basically because they can’t read them (since they are written in ratchasap). I know Ajahn Buddhadasa did translate some Suttas to standard Thai, but I think it never really caught on.

I’ve always wondered how Buddhism in Thailand would change if the Sutta Piṭaka would be translated to standard Thai, similarly to how it has been translated into English here in the West.

Is that what Ajarn Kukrit Sothipalo has done and what a lot of Thai people have become interested in?


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Indeed, this is true, and it’s rather striking that most of the people in Thailand who read suttas on SC read the English translations, not the Thai. I’m sure some of these are Dhamma tourists, but Thai people have told us that they read the English for exactly this reason.

The same problem applies to the Sinhala and some other Asian translations.

I talked about this with a Sri Lankan monk while in Sri Lanka. We were speaking of how the Sinhalese translations use elaborate formalisms to refer to the Buddha. I said, “But that’s not what the Pali texts themselves do; they’re quite simple and relatively informal, and the monks just address the Buddha as bhante.” He agreed, yes that’s what the Pali is like. But you can’t do that in Sinhalese, you have to make it fancy and formal!

He has certainly brought the suttas forward in a more accessible form, but I am not sure to what extent he has actually retranslated suttas. Perhaps @Dheerayupa could give us some more infor on this. In any case, I would dearly love to see accurate, modern, plain-language Thai translations on SC.