Friday, September 10, 2004

Book translation

I am translating part of the book Paticcasamuppada: Practical Dependent Origination by Buddhadasa Bhikkhu (refer to previous post). I am posting it at

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Paticcasamuppada: Practical Dependent Origination

In connection with my Sept. 4 post, I have discovered a book entitled Paticcasamuppada: Practical Dependent Origination by Buddhadasa Bhikkhu (a Thai Buddhist monk). The Chinese version of the book can be found on-line at

Being interested in the pratityasamutpada than any other Buddhist topics, I can say I am extremely fortunate to discover the book. The information (or should I say knowledge?) Buddhadasa Bhikkhu presented are most enlightening.

To me the Buddha Dharma is concerned with two things only: the truth of suffering (dukkha) and the cessation of suffering. Many people choose to embrace the Four Noble Truths and the Eight-Fold Paths in their practice, while I prefer to focus on the pratityasamutpada. Upon reading Buddhadasa Bhikkhu's book, I am glad I do.

I am still digesting and meditating on the contents of the book. I would like to share them with you - if I could (!) - because I have to translate them into English and the subject is so profound. I am also entertaining the idea of creating a new Web page to put some excerpts I believe are essential to the practice.

Oh, in case you didn't come from my Web page at, please visit it.

Sunday, September 05, 2004

The Pratityasamutpada and Theory of Causality

To me the doctrine of the pratityasamutpada (or paticcasamupada) is the core of the Buddha Dharma. In my research on the subject, I have come across some materials that are, should I say, eyebrows-raising. One of them states that "the Buddha refutes all theories of causality," and that "the Buddha related to the theory of causality from the standpoint of the pratityasamutpada."

There was this incident about the Buddha reprimanding Bhiksu Sati for his erroneous belief about the vijna (consciousness or mind) in relation to the pratityasamutpada. There was also another incident about the Buddha telling Ananda not to take the pratityasamutpada so lightly because it is far more than a mere mechanical law of causality.

It seems there was misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the Buddha's teaching on the pratityasamutpada in the course of history (of Buddhism); consequently, the erroneous (?) focus and teachings on the theory of causality even by mainstream schools. This is getting interesting.