I was wondering if the new site will have similar topic listings to Access To Insight so it’s easy to find Suttas about particular topics.
Maybe SC has this functionality already and I haven’t found it. If so, pointing me in the right direction would be greatly appreciated.
I really find Access to Insights way of categorizing Suttas and talks helpful and I only recently began using it that way to delve deeper into specific teachings.
Thank you for your help.
We’ve thought about it, but haven’t got anything concrete. I agree, it would be a nice idea. Let me see if I can come up with something …
Thank you so much for considering this Bhante. We will all benefit so much by your work and the additional suggestions from our community.
I think a tag cloud could work. That way it’s not hierarchical and could have a one-many relationship.
Just a relevant aside, from my own discovery of the Dhamma through access to insight. I don’t think I would have been able to learn and read as many Suttas if it wasn’t for the random Sutta feature on the app or the topics and search capabilities.
I think for someone who is new to the Dhamma it is very helpful to be able to access random teachings and also search things because, well at least when I started looking at the Buddha’s teachings, it can seem quite overwhelming to see Nikaya this or that and not know where to begin.
Even, a new to the Dhamma start here section might be helpful for Dhamma newbs.
We do have some additional information and help for newbies, but it’s just a start.
One problem that I feel is that we want to keep SC very neutral in tone. I have my own opinions and ideas about Dhamma, but I scrupulously keep them off SC. That’s what D&D is for! But if we start to do more descriptive and interpretive things, we very quickly have to start making value judgments.
And of course, there’s the problem that to do these things well simply takes time.
For these reasons I’d rather provide some very basic material on SC, and link to external sources for further details. The problem is, it’s not so easy to find things that are suitable. Still, we do have some things.
But to return to the idea of a list of topics, I have had a look at the AtI list as a starting point. One thing that I notice is that the scope is quite a bit broader than SC, in that it refers to various later books and the like. So I’d want to edit such info out, keep it more focused on the EBTs.
That’s one of the things I really appreciate about listening to your talks and the site as well as the other monastics from your monastery is that you are willing to question the veracity of things and do comparative studies and want to get to the core of what the Buddha taught. It is very much appreciated.
Thank you for taking a minute to respond. I know you have much work on top of your own Dhamma study and practice. Your time is valued.
Thank you Bhante.
Yes please. Your focus is important I believe and needed to protect the Dhamma and spread it.
I would go towards favouring the AtI approach to indexing, as you know has been my preference. The chance of skewing results by someone who knows the dhamma, would be minute when compared to the benefits to be had for newbies just coming into the dhamma - minutia wouldn’t matter to them. Search on SS is better for research. It can be hard to know when the person is immersed in a subject, but their priorities (and needs) are different to those of the creator. Its a parallel to the holy, pristine tripitaka, locked away in the temple cupboard, without access. I sometimes see people searching for suttas which are easily accessible in the AtI indexes. Bhanthe, please, have a topics (etc) based index, like AtI (if not better!).