This is Volume 2 of Dharma Audiobooks’ ground-breaking overview of Principal Texts of the Khuddaka Nikāya, the fifth section of the Sutta Pitaka in the Theravāda Pāli Canon. Far less known than the first four (Dīgha Nikāyā, Majjhima Nikāya, Saṁyutta Nikāya, Aṅguttara Nikāya) perhaps because of its character as an anthology rather than a self-contained work, it nevertheless contains gems which are only too easily overlooked or even underappreciated! As with Volume 1, Volume 2 follows the traditional ordering of the individual works in the Khuddaka Nikāya, which makes for a curious, but invigorating collection. The first two texts, Therīgāthā and Theragāthā, present the traditional histories of the bhikkhunīs (nuns) and bhikkhus (monks) of the Buddha’s time. In each case, their biographies (written centuries later by Dharmapāla who had access to sources now lost) lead to verses ascribed to the real individuals on gaining nibbāna. Here are fascinating glimpses of life at the time of the Buddha. The third work in Volume 2 can hardly be more different. The Jātakas (birth stories) is a delightful and absorbing collection of legendary stories of the previous life of the Buddha, how his actions in the past – as animal or human – led progressively along the path towards Buddhahood. In its entirety, the Jātakas is huge – 157 tales extending to nearly one million words. Here, Dharma Audiobooks presents a selection of 40 tales, including The Story of the Baby Quail, The Story of the Hare, The Miserly Treasurer, The Queen’s Necklace, leading to Jātaka 157, the famous – and long – Vessantara-Jātaka, The Paramita of Perfect Generosity. With the Western cultural tradition of Aesop’s Stories in our minds, it is easy to smile benignly as these tales unfold…but to generations of Buddhist followers down the ages, they had a deeper function than merely to entertain or point to a simple moral. Altogether, Volume 2 of Principal Texts of the Khuddaka Nikāya offers a rather special Dhammic experience. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
Available on audible: audible.co.uk, audible.com, audible.de, audible.fr, audible.com.au: : £39.99 or on subscription.