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Study guides

JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matterNetherlands Veteran

Have you ever looked at the study guides on Access To Insight? I mean these. They are pretty extensive documents, some 100 pages or more, which take you on a journey through the sutra’s by quoting chunks of sutra text which are contextually related. It’s a fascinating way of approaching the sutra’s if you don’t know enough to search for them one at a time, but would like to learn by theme more of the content.



  • adamcrossleyadamcrossley Veteran UK Veteran
    edited July 2019

    Access to Insight is such a god buddha-send 🤦‍♂️

  • JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter Netherlands Veteran
  • VimalajātiVimalajāti Whitby, Ontario Veteran
    edited July 2019

    In case anyone likes to jump into the deep end, I can offer a dharma data dump of Sarvāstivāda & Sautrānika Abhidharma.

    In 2010-12, Upāsaka Korin undertook a study of Sarvāstivāda & Sautrānika Abhidharma with invaluable result. Korin cross-references multiple recensions (Chinese, Tibetan, Sanskrit) and draws on the translations of de La Vallée-Poussin & Pruden.

    The result is a beginner Abhidharma compendium, as beginner as Abhidharma philosophy can get, that is quite accessible and can serve as an introduction guide to Abhidharma, a modern-day Abhidharmārthasaṁgāha, much like the medieval Burmese Abhidhammāṭṭhasaṇgaha by Venerable Anuruddha.

    Abhidharmakośakārikā, the "Treasury Concerning the Law," is a Sarvāstivāda Abhidharma compendium text by Venerable Vasubandhu, who later converted to Mahāyāna by way of engagement with the Sautrāntika ("Scripturist") school. He was so persuaded by the Scripturist approach that he wrote a commentary on his own Treasury of Abhidharma, Abhidharmakośakārikābhāṣya ("Exposition of the Treasury Concerning the Law"), which critiques elements of Sarvāstivāda scholasticism in the former text that Ven Vasubandhu felt were incorrect or misguided.

    Ven Vasubandhu had always been something of a black sheep Sarvāstivāda bhikṣu and many contemporary Sarvāstivāda intellectuals of his time criticized Ven Vasubandhu for misrepresenting the teachings of the Buddha as the Sarvāstivāda had traditionally preserved them after his conversion to the Scripturist school. Several Sarvāstivāda responce texts exist in opposition to Abhidharmakośakārikābhāṣya, such as Abhidharmadīpa & Nyāyānusāraśāstra, none of which ever became as widespread and infuential as the kośakārikā & bhāṣya.

    Upāsaka Korin assembled notes for study alongside the summation of the main text as well as supplemental materials to aid those who wish to jump into the deep end.

    Abhidharma scriptures are unlike sūtra scriptures, because they are philosophy, not instruction or revelation. Rather than an account of a teaching at the foot of the Buddha, they are like a snapshot taken of what was going on in the devote Buddhist universities and monasteries of the past.

  • VimalajātiVimalajāti Whitby, Ontario Veteran

    I forgot to mention, Korin also compiled a interlinear Mūlamadhyamakakārikā with various commentaries included such as Venerable Candrakīrti's Mūlamadhyamakavṛttiprasannapadā, Ven Tsongkhapa's Ocean of Reason (the Tibetan name is absolutely unwieldily, dbu ma rtsa ba'i tshig le'ur byas pa shes rab ces bya ba'i rnam bshad rigs pa'i rgya mtsho,) & (I think?) Ven Vimalākṣa's Mādhyamikaśāstra as well as reflective commentaries by modern Buddhists such as Kalupahana & Stephen Batchelor.

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