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Scholarship

Transcripts of Contemporary Oral Teachings

I am about to begin a rather involved project of transcribing and posting hour-plus long talks to this blog. Following is my rationale. It’s a dusty read whose purpose is to assure I come in peace. Not worth reading unless you are mad, and if you are mad, it is unlikely you are interested in peace offerings. So mostly not worth reading.

The Pāli Canon, and according to my understanding, all Buddhist teachings, exist primarily within oral tradition. Historically this was advantageous because an oral tradition entailed interaction with a teacher.

But learning styles differ. I am more a visual than an aural learner, and amongst the hearing impaired there is more specific need for access to written teachings.

I believe all Buddhist traditions have written texts. But have found contemporary teachings crucial in informing my understanding. A plethora of talks are published and made available for free online, but it is possible they are not serving a portion of their potential audience.

As time and attention permit, I hope to transcribe talks I find particularly instructive. I will only post those intended for free distribution, and will give credit to authors and links to the original files.

With any luck, automatic transcription is in the near future. But until Google decides how to spell Satipaṭṭhāna, I hope these posts may prove useful to others as well as to myself.

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