Anthologies for Practice

Check out How To: Using an Anthology for Daily Practice

In the Buddha’s Words

In the Buddha’s Words, by Bhikkhu Bodhi, Wisdom Publications. This is a comprehensive anthology of suttas, covering the whole range of the Buddha’s teachings. An excellent text for anyone regardless of experience level. This book will serve well as a foundation for your practice with the suttas as well as provide a lifetime of teachings. This is certainly a text to be read repeatedly. The introduction and first chapter of suttas can be downloaded from the Wisdom site here. This book is available in print form as well as on the Kindle.

Short topical anthologies by Ajahn Thanissaro

Free print copies are usually available from Metta Forest Monastery. All of his anthologies begin with basic concepts as a foundation for the main topic. Suitable for newcomers. They are anthologies in the sense that they contain suttas from throughout the canon, and sometimes only excerpts. Several of these books have counterparts in the Study Guide section of Access to Insight so you could check them out there before requesting them.

  • Merit, suttas that explain the three types of merit created through giving, being virtuous and cultivating the mind.
  • Into the Stream, suttas that explain the first stage of enlightenment and the path. Available as free PDF, Epub and Mobi/Kindle from
  • A Mediator’s Tools, suttas that explain the ten subjects for meditation. (Previously titled Recollections) Available as free PDF from
  • Beyond Coping: A Study Guide on Old Age, Illness and Death. Available as free PDF, Epub and Mobi/Kindle from
  • A Burden Off the Mind, suttas that explain the five aggregates. Available as free PDF from
  • Mindful of the Body
  • Recognizing the Dhamma, suttas based on the practice advice the Blessed One gave to his step mother, Mahā Pajāpatī.
  • Pali Canon Readings On The Brahma Viharas. Available as a PDF download.

Other anthologies

  • The Life of the Buddha, According to the Pali Canon, by Bhikkhu Ñāṇamoli, Buddhist Publication Society. Suttas and passages from the Vinaya placed in an approximately chronological order. And excellent way to experience the Canon.
  • Buddha, My Refuge, by Bhikkhu Khantipalo, Buddhist Publication Society. Suttas that teach the qualities of the Buddha. Very useful if you would like to develop a Recollection of the Buddha meditation practice.

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