Sutta Pitaka


Sutta Pitaka

The Sutta Pitaka (IAST|suttapiṭaka; or Suttanta Pitaka; cf Sanskrit सूत्र पिटक Sutra Pitaka) is the second of the three divisions of the Tipitaka or Pali Canon, the great Pali collection of Buddhist writings, the scriptures of Theravada Buddhism. The Sutta Pitaka contains more than 10,000 suttas (teachings) attributed to the Buddha or his close companions.

Origins

The scriptures tell how the First Council held shortly after the Buddha's death collected together the discipline (vinaya), and the dhamma in five collections. Tradition holds that little was added to the Canon after this. Scholars are more skeptical, but differ in their degrees of scepticism. Dr Richard Gombrich, Academic Director of the Oxford Centre for Buddhist Studies, former Boden Professor of Sanskrit at Oxford University and former President of the Pali Text Society, thinks most of the first four nikayas (see below) go back to the Buddha, in content but not in form. ["Theravada Buddhism", 2nd edn, Routledge, London, 2006, pages 20f] The late Professor Hirakawa Akira says [Hirakawa, "History of Indian Buddhism", volume 1, 1974, English translation University of Hawai'i Press, pages 69f] that the First Council collected only short prose passages or verses expressing important doctrines, and that these were expanded into full length suttas over the next century. L. S. Cousins, former lecturer in the Department of Comparative Religion at Manchester University and former President of the Pali Text Society, holds ["Pali oral literature", in "Buddhist Studies", ed Denwood and Piatigorski, Curzon, London, 1982/3, page 3] that in early times sutta was a pattern of teaching rather than a body of literature. Dr Gregory Schopen, Lecturer in Sanskrit, Tibetan, and Buddhist Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, says ["Bones, Stones, and Buddhist Monks", University of Hawai'i Press, 1997, page 24] that it is not until the fifth to sixth centuries C.E. that we can know anything definite about the contents of the Pali Canon.

Contents

There are five nikayas (collections) of suttas:
#Digha Nikaya (IAST|dīghanikāya), the "long" discourses.
#Majjhima Nikaya, the "medium-length" discourses.
#Samyutta Nikaya (IAST|saṃyutta-), the "clustered" discourses.
#Anguttara Nikaya (IAST|aṅguttara-), the "gradual collection".
#Khuddaka Nikaya, the "minor collection".

Digha Nikaya

This includes "The Greater Discourse on the Foundations of Mindfulness", "The Fruits of the Contemplative Life", and "The Buddha's Last Days". There are 34 long suttas in this nikaya.

Majjhima Nikaya

This includes "Shorter Exposition of Kamma", "Mindfulness of Breathing", and "Mindfulness of the Body". There are 152 medium-length suttas in this nikaya.

Samyutta Nikaya

There are, according to one reckoning, 2,889, but according to the commentary 7,762, shorter suttas in this Nikaya.

Anguttara Nikaya

These teachings are arranged numerically. It includes, according to the commentary's reckoning, 9,557 short suttas grouped by number, from ones to elevens.

Khuddaka Nikaya

This is a heterogeneous mix of sermons, doctrines, and poetry attributed to the Buddha and his disciples. The contents vary somewhat between editions. The Thai edition includes 1-15 below, the Sinhalese edition 1-17 and the Burmese edition 1-18. (For details of these editions see Pali Canon.)
# Khuddakapatha
# Dhammapada
# Udana
# Itivuttaka
# Suttanipata
# Vimanavatthu
# Petavatthu
# Theragatha
# Therigatha
# Jataka
# Niddesa
# Patisambhidamagga
# Apadana
# Buddhavamsa
# Cariyapitaka
# Nettipakarana or Netti
# Petakopadesa
# Milindapanha

Translations

The first four nikayas and more than half of the fifth have been translated by the Pali Text Society [http://www.palitext.com] . The first three have also been translated in the Teachings of the Buddha series by Wisdom Publications, with a translation of the fourth in preparation.

Selections (including material from at least two nikayas):

* "Buddhist Suttas", ed & tr T. W. Rhys Davids, "Sacred Books of the East", volume XI, Clarendon/Oxford, 1881; reprinted by Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi (& ?Dover, New York)
* "The Word of the Buddha", ed & tr Nyanatiloka, 1935
* "Early Buddhist Poetry", ed I. B. Horner, Ananda Semage, Colombo, 1963
* "The Book of Protection", tr Piyadassi, Buddhist Publication Society, Kandy, Sri Lanka, 1981; translation of the paritta
* "In the Buddha's Words", ed & tr Bodhi, Wisdom Pubns, 2005
* "Early Buddhist Discourses", ed & tr John J. Holder, 2006
* "Sayings of the Buddha", ed & tr Rupert Gethin, Oxford University Press, 2008

Notes

ee also

* Abhidhamma Pitaka
* Vinaya Pitaka

External links

* [http://www.accesstoinsight.org/index.html] Access to Insight translations of Pali Suttas in English
* [http://www.metta.lk/tipitaka/index.html Pali Text and English Translations]
* [http://www.budsas.org/ebud/ebsut055.htm How old is the Sutta Pitaka?] - Alexander Wynne, St John's College, Oxford University, 2003.
* [http://search.nibbanam.com Search in English translations of the Sutta Pitaka]


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Sutta pitaka — Le Sutta Pitaka ou Suttanta Pitaka (pali), Sūtra Piṭaka ou Sutra Pitaka (sanscrit) सूत्र पिटक, « La corbeille des enseignements », est la deuxième des trois divisions du canon pali Tipitaka sur lequel se base le courant theravada. Elle… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sutta-pitaka — Sutta Pitaka: Canasta de los Discursos, la colección de los discursos o sermones, es la segunda gran división del Canon Pali que contiene más de 10.000 discursos o suttas que Buda y, a veces, algunos de sus discípulos más cercanos habían… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Sutta Pitaka — Le Sutta Pitaka ou Suttanta Pitaka (pali), Sūtra Piṭaka ou Sutra Pitaka (sanskrit) सूत्र पिटक, « La corbeille des enseignements », est la deuxième des trois divisions du canon pali Tipitaka sur lequel se base le courant theravada. Elle… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sutta Pitaka — /soot euh/, Buddhism. See under Pali Canon. * * * Major section of the Tripitaka, the canon of Theravada Buddhism, largely attributed to the Buddha himself. It is divided into five collections, or Nikayas: the Digha Nikaya ( Long Collection ),… …   Universalium

  • Sutta-Pitaka — Der Suttapitaka (Pali Sutta piṭaka) ist der Korb der Lehrreden ist eine Sammlung von Dialogen und Lehrvorträgen des Buddha. Manchmal wird der als wichtigster Teil des „Dreikorbs“ gesehene Korb der Lehrreden als stellvertretend für den ganzen Pali …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • SUTTA-PITAKA —    one of the three major divisions of the BUDDHIST CANON consisting of dialogues and discourses full of parables and stories which encourage popular PIETY. The two other divisions are the VINAYA PIAKA and the Adhidhamma Piaka …   Concise dictionary of Religion

  • Sutta Pitaka — /soot euh/, Buddhism. See under Pali Canon …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sutta Nipata — Sutta Nipāta Sutta Nipāta (pâli), «choix d instructions» est un recueil de sûtras du bouddhisme ancien, parfois mêlés de vers, qui figure dans la « collection mineure » , Khuddaka Nikaya, du canon pâli. André Bareau traduit ce recueil… …   Wikipédia en Français


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