THE LITERATURE OF THERAVADAABHIDHAMMA
The Abhidhamma Pitaka is a Philosophical Collection that forms the third greatsection of the Buddhist Pali Canon (Tipitaka). It is a system of classifications,analytical enumerations and definitions, with no elaborate explanations on thesubject matter. These are huge collections of systematically arranged tabulations,accompanied by definitions of the terms used in the tables. The
, primarily deals with the philosophy and psychology of the Theravada schoolof Buddhism.
”, however, refers to that school of Buddhism which,supposedly adhere to the most original and purest form of the Buddhist teachings,advocated by those
(monks) who obtained the erudition directly through theBuddha. They used the
(the original language)to record the original text or the
, (the text of the canons). The term
, however, when abbreviated became ‘pari’ or ‘pali’; and in course of timewas applied to denote the language of the entire canons and other compositionshaving the same language.
Meaning of the term “Abhidhamma”
The word “Abhidhamma” may be analyzed etymologically, as the compound of
(“to”; “toward”; “into”) and
, which means “to hold” or “bear”).