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on 15 January 2012
This volume is a valuable collection of teachings, arranged by theme, taken from the Pali Suttas. This work serves as both a fine introduction to the wider and voluminous Pali Suttas for those who are new to them and as a fine single volume summary for those already familiar with the work. Bhikkhu Bodhi has also, through the thematic structure he uses for his anthology, provided a helpful template and structure to aid the understanding of those who have read, or go on to read, the complete Suttas. The volume includes a useful introduction and each of the ten themed chapters is preceded by a helpful introduction/overview. The volume also includes useful notes and indices.

"A remarkable book. A gift to the world."
- Andrew Olendzki, Executive Director of the Barre Center of Buddhist Studies, in Buddhadharma: The Practitioner's Quarterly

A number of the Suttas are also available in complete translations. The Connected Discourses of the Buddha: Samyutta Nikaya,The Middle Length Sayings: Majjhima-Nikaya and The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha: Anguttara Nikaya which are also translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi and the Long Discourses of the Buddha: Digha-Nikaya translated by Maurice Walshe.
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on 15 May 2006
This book is a collection of teachings from the Pali Canon assembled by a leading translator and Buddhist scholar. Bhikku Bodhi has placed the teachings under various themed headings to make it easier for the reader to access the works. This is an excellent alternative to spending a lot of money on buying the hardback volumes of the various Nikayas. Strongly commended.
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on 21 April 2012
I have been a practicing Buddhist for about four years now but have only recently been interested in studying the Pali Cannon. This book In the Buddha's Words: An Anthology of Discourses from the Pali Canon (Teachings of the Buddha) has been an excellent introduction to the teachings of the Buddha. So much so that as soon as I finished reading it I purchased The Middle Length Discourses (Majjhima Nikaya), also translated by the Venerable Bikkhu Bodhi. Needless to say, I will be purchasing further publications by this very renown monk.
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on 11 February 2014
I have come across so many wildly different interpretations of Buddhism, that I thought it was time I found out - as nearly as possible - what the Buddha actually said. This book is exactly what I wanted. It picks out from the Pali canon all the passages that are most relevant to Buddhist belief as it stands today; it has a good method of cutting down on the constant repetitions which were a feature of the original; and each section has an introduction which makes what follows so much easier to understand and appreciate.

Best of all, from my point of view, it steers a perfectly-judged middle course between being scholarly, being accessible and being devotional; it makes allowance for the fact that in the 21st century we are disinclined to believe in some of the ideas that were current in the time of the Buddha - yet it never actually says so, thus preserving the faith of those who would not be able to believe the Buddha might have been wrong in any respect!

I can thoroughly recommend this book to anyone else who wants to go back to the source of Buddhist belief.
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on 20 December 2010
A wonderful selection of texts from the Pali Canon - all nicely arranged by themes with a thoughtful introduction and summary of each chapter. Plus comprehensive footnotes. Ideal to read straight through or dip into. Great to get back to the early sources which are so often and so sadly overlooked by those who should know better. The nearest we can get to the actual words of the Buddha - what he said rather than what we imagine he said! This ought to be in the world best seller list. A classic!
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on 22 March 2013
This is the book I've been looking for for a few years. It has selections from sutras ranging in length from a paragraph to a few pages. Arranged thematically in 10 chapters, Bikkhu Bodhi has done a magnificent job of presenting an overview of the Buddha's teaching. He introduces each chapter with an incisive introduction, and this book has left me better informed and hungry to explore the Pali Canon more extensively.
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on 20 January 2015
I have checked out English translations by Bhikku Bodhi and while I am impressed with his Pali proficiency and think these are very accessible translations for English readers, I do think a lot is lost in the English translations. I generally read the Thai translation of Pali Canon (of course that's my language) and will probably stick with that. One of the reasons is that English is not a language of Buddhism and most Pali terms had to be translated to make a translation make sense. English readers should be aware of this difference. The Pali Canon in Thai, for example, leaves very many Pali terms untranslated and still sounds natural because Thai language, through centuries of being associated with Buddhism, assimilates thousands of Pali words into it. Even my name (Siri-Chitta) is in Pali. So it is a language that tends to express Buddhist's ideas more naturally. That being said, I think English translations tend to "over translate" the key terms -- thereby obscuring a lot of concepts and doctrines that need exposure in Pali. So when I read from the English translation and found some important key concepts translated into English, I feel more confused than clarified. It's like reading Aristotle in a language that has only a few loan words from Greek - an unthinkable way of studying Greek philosophy to say the least.

How to make an English translation of Pali Canon better? I don't really know. Perhaps a serious layman will have to know some Pali and rely on other sources. In any case, I think Bhikku Bodhi's works are very welcomed because they make the core Theravada's teachings accessible as never before in the Anglophone world. They are really a great service to the Theravada tradition.
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on 22 February 2013
This book is very special. By studying its teachings you will understand the Buddha's full spectrum of teachings. A remarkable man. He understands the heart with such precision, he then points to life and how such understanding can be woven into the mind. This practice covers all circumstances and can be applied in all aspects of ethics, health, social, family, spiritual perspectives. His wisdom places your mind into a stream of ease. You get a feel for his remarkable gift to the world. A key to opening the door.
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on 27 June 2015
This was one of the first book I read on Buddhas's teachings. Oh what a insighful journey it was, highly recommended.
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on 25 July 2014
A well laid out anthology of the pali canon. Worth the buy if you are a student of buddhadharma.
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