In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

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In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:57 am

In the Buddha's Words
Bhikkhu Bodhi

This post gives links to freely-available versions of the suttas included in Bhikkhu Bodhi's book. More details of this excellent book, and the Introuction for each chapter, are available at Wisdom Publications. You can read some of of it at Amazon and Google Books.


Links to Sutta Central (SC) will lead you to translations (click on the en links on the right). Since that site is still being built the links should improve with time. That site also gives you direct access to the Pali version, and gives links to parallels from other Canons.

These links are mostly to Sutta Central (SC) itself (, Access to Insight (ATI) and Metta Net ( However, there are some other sources, includent Budhist Publication Society (BPS,

Links directly to Access to Insight (ATI) are also given in some cases where the links from Sutta Central are not yet functional.

Of course, you are encouraged to buy the book itself, but these links will give you alternative translations and easy on-line references.

Note that there are some numbering differences between different translations of the AN and SN, which may cause some confusion. Note also that at Metta Net the AN an SN suttas are presented in vaggas of about 10 suttas at a time, and you will need to match the Pali name from Sutta Central with the name at Metta Net to locate the particular sutta.

Note that there are talks by Bhikkhu Bodhi, base on this book, here (you will nee to scroll down to fin them).

There are bound to be errors in the links. Please report them!

Bhikkhu Bodhi

Introduction (PDF)

I. The Human Condition


    1. Old Age, Illness, and Death
      (1) Aging and Death (SN 3.3) SC
      (2) The Simile of the Mountain (SN 3.25) SC
      (3) The Divine Messengers (from AN 3.35 [AN 3.36]) SC
    2. The Tribulations of Unreflective Living
      (1) The Dart of Painful Feeling (SN 36.6) SC
      (2) The Vicissitudes of Life (AN 8.6) SC
      (3) Anxiety Due to Change (SN 22.7) SC
    3. A World in Turmoil
      (1) The Origin of Conflict (AN 2. iv, 6, abridged) [AN 2.37] SC
      (2) Why Do Beings Live in Hate? (from DN 21) SC
      (3) The Dark Chain of Causation (from DN 15) SC
      (4) The Roots of Violence and Oppression (from AN 3.69) SC
    4. Without Discoverable Beginning
      (1) Grass and Sticks (SN 15.1) SC
      (2) Balls of Clay (SN 15.2) SC
      (3) The Mountain (SN 15.5) SC
      (4) The River Ganges (SN 15.8) SC
      [See also related suttas at: ATI]
      (5) Dog on a Leash (SN 22.99) SC

II. The Bringer of Light


    1. One Person (AN 1. xiii, 1, 5, 6) [AN 1.170-186] SC ATI
    2. The Buddha’s Conception and Birth (MN 123, abridged) SC
    3. The Quest for Enlightenment
      (1) Seeking the Supreme State of Sublime Peace (from MN 26) SC
      (2) The Realization of the Three True Knowledges (from MN 36) SC
      (3) The Ancient City (SN 12.65) SC
    4. The Decision to Teach (from MN 26) SC
    5. The First Discourse (SN 56.11) SC

III. Approaching the Dhamma


    1. Not a Secret Doctrine (AN 3.129) SC
    2. No Dogmas or Blind Belief (AN 3.65) SC
    3. The Visible Origin and Passing Away of Suffering (SN 42.11) SC
    4. Investigate the Teacher Himself (MN 47) SC
    5. Steps toward the Realization of Truth (from MN 95) SC

IV. The Happiness Visible in This Present Life


    1. Upholding the Dhamma in Society
      (1) The King of the Dhamma (AN 3.14) SC
      (2) Worshipping the Six Directions (from DN 31) SC
    2. The Family
      (1) Parents and Children
        (a) Respect for Parents (AN 4.63) SC
        (b) Repaying One’s Parents (AN 2. iv, 2) [AN 2.33] SC
      (2) Husbands and Wives
        (a) Different Kinds of Marriages (AN 4.53) SC
        (b) How to Be United in Future Lives (AN 4.55) SC
        (c) Seven Kinds of Wives (AN 7.59) [AN 7.63] SC
    3. Present Welfare, Future Welfare (AN 8.54) SC
    4. Right Livelihood
      (1) Avoiding Wrong Livelihood (AN 5.177) SC
      (2) The Proper Use of Wealth (AN 4.61) SC
      (3) A Family Man’s Happiness (AN 4.62) SC
    5. The Woman of the Home (AN 8.49) SC
    6. The Community
      (1) Six Roots of Dispute (from MN 104) SC
      (2) Six Principles of Cordiality (from MN 104) SC
      (3) Purification Is for All Four Castes (MN 93, abridged) SC
      (4) Seven Principles of Social Stability (from DN 16) SC
      (5) The Wheel-Turning Monarch (from DN 26) SC
      (6) Bringing Tranquillity to the Land (from DN 5) SC

V. The Way to a Fortunate Rebirth


    1. The Law of Kamma
      (1) Four Kinds of Kamma (AN 4.232) SC ATI
      (2) Why Beings Fare as They Do after Death (MN 41) SC
      (3) Kamma and Its Fruits (MN 135) SC

    2. Merit. The Key to Good Fortune
      (1) Meritorious Deeds (It 22) SC ATI]
      (2) Three Bases of Merit (AN 8.36) SC
      (3) The Best Kinds of Confidence (AN 4.34) SC
    3. Giving
      (1) If People Knew the Result of Giving (It 26) SC ATI]
      (2) Reasons for Giving (AN 8.33) SC
      (3) The Gift of Food (AN 4.57) SC
      (4) A Superior Person’s Gifts (AN 5.148) SC
      (5) Mutual Support (It 107) SC ATI
      (6) Rebirth on Account of Giving (AN 8.35) SC
    4. Moral Discipline
      (1) The Five Precepts (AN 8.39) SC
      (2) The Uposatha Observance (AN 8.41) SC
    5. Meditation
      (1) The Development of Loving-Kindness (It 27) SC ATI
      (2) The Four Divine Abodes (from MN 99) SC
      (3) Insight Surpasses All (AN 9.20, abridged) SC ATI

VI. Deepening One’s Perspective on the World


    1. Four Wonderful Things (AN 4.128) SC
    2. Gratification, Danger, and Escape
      (1) Before My Enlightenment (AN 3.101 §§1–2) [3.103] SC
      (2) I Set Out Seeking (AN 3.101 §3) [3.103] SC
      (3) If There Were No Gratification (AN 3.105) SC
    3. Properly Appraising Objects of Attachment (MN 13) SC
    4. The Pitfalls in Sensual Pleasures
      (1) Cutting Off All Affairs (from MN 54) SC
      (2) The Fever of Sensual Pleasures (from MN 75) SC
    5. Life Is Short and Fleeting (AN 7.70) [AN 7.74] SC
    6. Four Summaries of the Dhamma (from MN 82) SC
    7. The Danger in Views
      (1) A Miscellany on Wrong View (AN 1. xvii, 1, 3, 7, 9) [AN 1.306-308] SC SC SC
      (2) The Blind Men and the Elephant (Ud 6.4) SC ATI
      (3) Held by Two Kinds of Views (It 49) SC ATI
    8. From the Divine Realms to the Infernal (AN 4.125) SC
    9. The Perils of Saṃsāra
      (1) The Stream of Tears (SN 15.3) SC
      (2) The Stream of Blood (SN 15.13) SC

VII. The Path to Liberation


    1. Why Does One Enter the Path?
      (1) The Arrow of Birth, Aging, and Death (MN 63) SC
      (2) The Heartwood of the Spiritual Life (MN 29) SC
      (3) The Fading Away of Lust (SN 45.41–48, combined) SC
    2. Analysis of the Eightfold Path (SN 45.8) SC
    3. Good Friendship (SN 45.2) SC
    4. The Graduated Training (MN 27) SC
    5. The Higher Stages of Training with Similes (from MN 39) SC

VIII. Mastering the Mind


    1. The Mind Is the Key (AN 1. iii, 1, 2, 3, 4, 9, 10) [AN 1.21-30] SC ATI
    2. Developing a Pair of Skills
      (1) Serenity and Insight (AN 2. iii, 10) [AN 2.31] SC
      (2) Four Ways to Arahantship (AN 4.170) SC
      (3) Four Kinds of Persons (AN 4.94) SC
    3. The Hindrances to Mental Development (SN 46.55, abridged) SC
    4. The Refinement of the Mind (AN 3.100 §§1–10) [AN 3.101] SC
    5. The Removal of Distracting Thoughts (MN 20) SC
    6. The Mind of Loving-Kindness (from MN 21) SC
    7. The Six Recollections (AN 6.10) SC [Related: AN 11.12 SC]
    8. The Four Establishments of Mindfulness (MN 10) SC
    9. Mindfulness of Breathing (SN 54.13) SC
    10. The Achievement of Mastery (SN 28.1–9,combined) SC SC SC SC SC SC SC SC SC

IX. Shining the Light of Wisdom


    1. Images of Wisdom
      (1) Wisdom as a Light (AN 4.143) SC
      (2) Wisdom as a Knife (from MN 146) SC
    2. The Conditions for Wisdom (AN 8.2, abridged) SC
    3. A Discourse on Right View (MN 9) SC
    4. The Domain of Wisdom
      (1) By Way of the Five Aggregates
        (a) Phases of the Aggregates (SN 22.56) SC
        (b) A Catechism on the Aggregates (SN 22.82 = MN 109, abridged) SC SC
        (c) The Characteristic of Nonself (SN 22.59) SC
        (d) Impermanent, Suffering, Nonself (SN 22.45) SC
        (e) A Lump of Foam (SN 22.95) SC
      (2) By Way of the Six Sense Bases
        (a) Full Understanding (SN 35.26) SC
        (b) Burning (SN 35.28) SC
        (c) Suitable for Attaining Nibbāna (SN 35.147-49, combined) SC SC SC
        (d) Empty Is the World (SN 35.85) SC
        (e) Conscious Too Is Nonself (SN 35.234) SC
      (3) By Way of the Elements
        (a) The Eighteen Elements (SN 14.1) SC
        (b) The Four Elements (SN 14.37-39, combined) SC SC SC
        (c) The Six Elements (from MN 140) SC
      (4) By Way of Dependent Origination
        (a) What Is Dependent Origination? (SN 12.1) SC
        (b) The Stableness of the Dhamma (SN 12.20) SC
        (c) Forty-Four Cases of Knowledge (SN 12.33) SC
        (d) A Teaching by the Middle (SN 12.15) SC
        (e) The Continuance of Consciousness (SN 12.38) SC
        (f) The Origin and Passing of the World (SN 12.44) SC
      (5) By Way of the Four Noble Truths
        (a) The Truths of All Buddhas (SN 56.24) SC
        (b) These Four Truths Are Actual (SN 56.20) SC
        (c) A Handful of Leaves (SN 56.31) SC
        (d) Because of Not Understanding (SN 56.21) SC
        (e) The Precipice (SN 56.42) SC
        (f) Making the Breakthrough (SN 56.32) SC
        (g) The Destruction of the Taints (SN 56.25) SC
    5. The Goal of Wisdom
      (1) What is Nibbāna? (SN 38.1) SC
      (2) Thirty-Three Synonyms for Nibbāna (SN 43.1– 44, combined) SC
      (3) There Is That Base (Ud 8.1) SC ATI
      (4) The Unborn (Ud 8.3) SC ATI
      (5) The Two Nibbāna Elements (It 44) SC ATI
      (6) The Fire and the Ocean (from MN 72) SC

X. The Planes of Realization


    1. The Field of Merit for the World
      (1) Eight Persons Worthy of Gifts (AN 8.59) SC
      (2) Differentiation by Faculties (SN 48.18) SC [Related: SN 48.10 SC]
      (3) In the Dhamma Well Expounded (from MN 22) SC
      (4) The Completeness of the Teaching (from MN 73) SC
      (5) Seven Kinds of Noble Persons (from MN 70) SC
    2. Stream-Entry
      (1) The Four Factors Leading to Stream-Entry (SN 55.5) SC
      [Related: Admirable Friendship (It 17) SC ATI; Hearing the Dhamma (AN 5.202) SC; Careful Attention (It 16) SC ATI; Practice in accorance with the Dhamma (SN 22.39) SC]
      (2) Entering the Fixed Course of Rightness (SN 25.1) SC
      (3) The Breakthrough to the Dhamma (SN 13.1) SC
      (4) The Four Factors of a Stream-Enterer (SN 55.2) SC [Related: (SN 55.1) SC]
      (5) Better than Sovereignty over the Earth (SN 55.1) SC
    3. Nonreturning
      (1) Abandoning the Five Lower Fetters (from MN 64) SC
      (2) Four Kinds of Persons (AN 4.169) SC
      (3) Six Things that Partake of True Knowledge (SN 55.3) SC [No links at present]
      (4) Five Kinds of Nonreturners (SN 46.3) SC
    4. The Arahant
      (1) Removing the Residual Conceit “I Am” (SN 22.89) SC
      (2) The Trainee and the Arahant (SN 48.53) SC
      (3) A Monk Whose Crossbar Has Been Lifted (from MN 22) SC
      (4) Nine Things an Arahant Cannot Do (from AN 9.7) SC
      (5) A Mind Unshaken (from AN 9.26) SC
      (6) The Ten Powers of an Arahant Monk (AN 10.90) SC
      (7) The Sage at Peace (from MN 140) SC
      (8) Happy Indeed Are the Arahants (from SN 22.76) SC

    5. The Tathāgata
      (1) The Buddha and the Arahant (SN 22.58) SC
      (2) For the Welfare of Many (It 84) SC ATI
      (3) Sāriputta’s Lofty Utterance (SN 47.12) SC
      (4) The Powers and Grounds of Self-Confidence (from MN 12) SC
      (5) The Manifestation of Great Light (SN 56.38) SC
      (6) The Man Desiring Our Good (from MN 19) SC
      (7) The Lion (SN 22.78) SC
      (8) Why Is He Called the Tathāgata? (AN 4.23 = It 112) SC SC ATI

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby Babadhari » Sun Feb 09, 2014 11:19 am

thanks mike

i recall this has been recommended by Dhamma Wheel members as an invaluable source
Aflame with the fire of passion, the fire of aversion, the fire of delusion.
Aflame, with birth, aging & death, with sorrows, lamentations, pains, distresses, & despairs ......

Seeing thus, the disciple of the Noble One grows disenchanted. SN 35.28

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby Mkoll » Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:34 pm

Thanks mike.

This is an excellent introduction to the Buddha's teachings as put forth in the Sutta Pitaka of the Pali Canon. I would unhesitatingly recommend it to all newcomers to Buddhism.

Buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi
Dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi
Saṅghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi

Hatred is never appeased by hatred in this world; by non-hatred alone is hatred appeased. This is an eternal law.
-Dhp 5

sabbe sattā sukhi hontu :smile:

Courage can only be cultivated in the face of fear.

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Feb 09, 2014 11:55 pm

I agree, I think it's the single most useful book that I have.

What I've noticed by doing this, and checking the links from Sutta Central, is that quite a large proportion of the suttas in the book have translations on Sutta Central, the vast majority of those by Bhikkhu Bodhi. I think it's great that we have a serious alternative to the Access to Insight and Metta Net translations (though Bhikkhu Bodhi's excellent footnotes are only available if you purchase the book, or the Nikaya volumes). Sutta Central doesn't have the thematic guides that Access to Insight has here: and the In the Buddha's Words links are helpful in giving a thematic guide to at least some of the material.

I've fixed a few small things. All chapters now have links to Bhikkhu Bodhi's introductory material, which is well worth reading. Please let me know of any errors, or possible enhancements.


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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby bodom » Mon Feb 10, 2014 12:17 am

This is great work thank you Mike.

To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby alan » Mon Feb 10, 2014 4:25 am

Good place to start. Thanks Mike. Bought this book on your recommendation years ago.

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Feb 10, 2014 4:36 am

Thanks. If I brush up on clever regular-expression search and replace it should be trivial to do the same with Bhikkhu Bodhi's Thematic Guide to the Anguttara Nikaya: ... atic-guide

All that is required is to replace entries such as:
1. Biographical 3:39; 4:21, 4:118, 4:127, 5:196, 8:11, 8:64, 8:69, 8:70, 9:41

1. Biographical [url=]3.39[/url]; ...

Which would then come out as:
1. Biographical 3.39; ...

and in that case gives you three choices of translation for AN 3.39...

Surely someone here could whip up a one-liner in sed, perl, or python (depending on your age :)) that would do that...
There is the added complication of entries like:
5. Preserving the Dhamma 1:130‒69, 2:20, 2:41, 4:160, 4:180, 5:79‒80, 5:154‒56, 5:201, 6:40, 7:59

That would take a little more code, and converting 1:130-69 to 40 separate entries might be overkill... :thinking:


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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby Digity » Tue Jun 16, 2015 4:10 am

I just ordered this book and I'm looking forward to reading it. I plan to buy the other three books, which are the translations of the Connected, Middle Length and Numerical Discourses. I've mostly just read Ven. Thanissaro's translations of the suttas from ATI and don't have much knowledge of Ven. Bodhi's translations. But yes, it truly is wonderful to have all these great Buddhist mind's sharing their knowledge with us.


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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby waterchan » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:21 am

mikenz66 wrote:Surely someone here could whip up a one-liner in sed, perl, or python (depending on your age :)) that would do that...

A programming language isn't necessary. Advanced text editors such as Notepad++ have the regex search and replace features you need.

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby Alobha » Thu Jun 18, 2015 8:48 am

Great job Mike! :anjali:

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby badscooter » Thu Jul 16, 2015 12:44 am

This is awesome!!!! :woohoo: :clap: :thumbsup: :toast: :guns:

Thanks Mike
"whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon will be the inclination of one's mind"

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby Disciple » Thu Jul 16, 2015 1:10 am

A very good book. 2 thumbs up

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby pilgrim » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:07 am

Are the links to the suttas in sutta central correct? Th suttas do not seem to correspond to the description given in the link. Some examples.

(1) Aging and Death (SN 3.3) SC.......The link goes to 3.1.1
(3) The Divine Messengers (from AN 3.35) SC........AN3.35 is about sleeping without attachments
Not a Secret Doctrine (AN 3.129) SC...........AN3.129 s about a monk who stinks
:shrug: :shrug:

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby mal4mac » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:48 am

pilgrim wrote:Are the links to the suttas in sutta central correct? Th suttas do not seem to correspond to the description given in the link. Some examples.

(1) Aging and Death (SN 3.3) SC.......The link goes to 3.1.1

... and the translation isn't by Bodhi, "Sister Upalavaṇṇā's translations seem to have been done in great haste and are extremely poor." - Dhammanando viewtopic.php?f=12&t=23091&p=331010&hilit=Sister+Upalavanna#p331010"

Why not read the free introductions (which are from the book!) and, if you feel grateful, throw some dana Bodhi's way by buying the book? Win-win?
- Mal

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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:55 am

Thanks for the feedback. It looks like AN3.35 should be AN3.36 in the numbering system used on Sutta Central (and Bhikkhu Bodhi's new translation of the AN), and I've fixed that. The others link to groups of suttas on mettanet, and you need to search through to find the particular sutta, which sometimes isn't easy.

If there are others that have translations on Sutta Central, or link to ATI, that are incorrect, please let me know and I'll fix them.


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Re: In the Buddha's Words - Open Source Version

Postby pulga » Sun Nov 13, 2016 4:55 am

This title in now available as a very affordable audiobook on MP-3 CD.

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