Best way to learn Pali?

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Best way to learn Pali?

Postby budhano » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:16 am

I am signed up to take a Pali course in May. The prerequisite for the course is to have completed one of the beginning Pali grammars (Gair, Warder, etc.)

I am looking for two things here. One, from someone who has learned Pali in a relatively short amount of time, which grammar did you use? Do you have any advice for how to proceed through one of these grammars? Right now I have access to Gair, Warder, and the books "A Pali Grammar for Students," Johannson's book and the book Buddhavacana.

Second, please encourage me!! :embarassed: I have been trying to sit down and start studying for months but have had no end of distractions and obstacles to deal with.

I want to get as much Pali under my belt as possible before May. It's worth noting I took a college year of Sanskrit a few years ago in addition to obtaining a BA in Latin & Greek, though since I neglected to keep up with those languages I remember very little of them. Nonetheless I imagine having experience learning inflected languages will be helpful in teaching myself Pali.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated :anjali: :anjali: :anjali:
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Tue Mar 12, 2013 3:51 am

http://arrowriver.ca/pali/palidrill1.html

This might help. Have you come across it?
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby Dmytro » Tue Mar 12, 2013 6:29 am

Hi Budhano,

Here's what I would propose:
viewtopic.php?f=23&t=14282&p=215471
Kare has an excellent advice:
viewtopic.php?f=23&t=428#p7731

budhano wrote:I am looking for two things here. One, from someone who has learned Pali in a relatively short amount of time, which grammar did you use? Do you have any advice for how to proceed through one of these grammars? Right now I have access to Gair, Warder, and the books "A Pali Grammar for Students," Johannson's book and the book Buddhavacana.


If you already have some elementary knowledge, I would recommend Gair & Karunatillake's course.
Otherwise it might be better to start from Rune Johansson's book.

Second, please encourage me!! :embarassed: I have been trying to sit down and start studying for months but have had no end of distractions and obstacles to deal with.

I want to get as much Pali under my belt as possible before May. It's worth noting I took a college year of Sanskrit a few years ago in addition to obtaining a BA in Latin & Greek, though since I neglected to keep up with those languages I remember very little of them. Nonetheless I imagine having experience learning inflected languages will be helpful in teaching myself Pali.


I would advise you to make the study as interesting as possible. Rote memorization of grammar is troublesome and short-lived.
Gair/Karunatillake and Rune Johansson's courses are much more lively.
Find Pali texts that are really interesting for you. Buddhavacana by Glen Wallis may be useful in this regard.

:namaste:
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby Kare » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:42 am

Signed up for a Pali course? Lucky you! Most of us others have worked our way through the books on our own. :reading:

Just remember that learning and reading Pali is no toil, no trouble, no work ... it is fun! Going to a Pali course is like having fun together with others, regard it as going to a party.

:toast:

So just have fun, enjoy and have a good time at the Pali party!

:twothumbsup:
Mettāya,
Kåre
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby budhano » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:54 pm

Thank you all! It looks like I will be proceeding with Gair & Karunatillake. I am going to aim to finish one lesson a week so I can be prepared for the class in May.

Another question - can anybody comment on Bhikkhu Bodhi's lectures accompanying Gair & Karunatillake's grammar? I've heard mixed reviews but I'm wondering what people here think.
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby xinuflux » Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:37 am

budhano wrote:
Another question - can anybody comment on Bhikkhu Bodhi's lectures accompanying Gair & Karunatillake's grammar? I've heard mixed reviews but I'm wondering what people here think.


I highly recommend Bhikkhu Bodhi's lectures. He adds interesting notes to the sometimes dry content, corrects the book's errors and really helps with the pronunciation.
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Re: Best way to learn Pali?

Postby convivium » Thu Mar 21, 2013 5:32 pm

does anyone have experience studying it in a university or college in asia?
Just keep breathing in and out like this. Don't be interested in anything else. It doesn't matter even if someone is standing on their head with their ass in the air. Don't pay it any attention. Just stay with the in-breath and the out-breath. Concentrate your awareness on the breath. Just keep doing it. http://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Just_Do_It_1_2.php
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