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An Analytical Study of the Successive Talks of the Buddha (Anupubbikath)

( Synopsis )

Submitted to Department of Buddhist Studies, Magadh University, Bodhgaya, Bihar, India

For the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy Degree

Name of the Candidate Name of the Department Name of the University Name of the Supervisor

U VILASAGGALANKARA Department of Buddhist Studies Magadh University, Bodhgaya

Title of the Research - An Analytical Study of the Successive Talks of the Buddha (Anupubbikath)


In the Anguttara Nikaya, it is said that the Buddha appears in the world for the well-being, benefit, happiness and of many.1 He tirelessly preached the world his precious teaching(Dhamma). By his teaching, in accordance with His aim, He enlightened the followers. Besides, the world has proved to be a safe and peaceful place throughout history. While preaching, being a super Master, He used the systematic technique. This technique appears in the Pali Canon in successive order. Whenever He taught His dhamma to the person concerned, He firstly talks about the giving(Dnakath). Once the listener realizes how giving should be carried out and the advantages of what is given, the master explains the observance of precepts (Silakath), and the benefit thereof. Then He elucidates the state of being in the celestial worlds (saggakath) which one can achieve by engaging in the giving and observing precepts. Of course, it is not the ultimate of His

AN, Vol.I,p, 21.

teaching since these celestial worlds are, though seemed to be less, also bound to suffering. Therefore, He again shows the vanity of being born in these worlds (kmanamdinavakath). With these kind talks, the Lord achieves in making the mind of the listener receptive, gentle and clean of all agitations. It is the time when the Buddha proclaims the listener His own product of path which leads to liberation (maggakath). This methodology was used by the Buddha in liberating the follower. Our research work will extensively study these five talks according to the Pli canon.

Problem It is true that there have so many books that try to point out what the real teaching of the Buddha is. The comprehensive study that focuses on the exclusive approach used by the Master is , however, unknown to us. This what drives us to embark on this study which can be claimed to be the pioneer work in the field of Buddhist studies. Objective of the study

The main aim of this research work is to show the successive approach of the Buddha by the time He enlightens the candidate. Though this approach is described in various discourses, one who wants to extend his knowledge to the related matters is very rare. Therefore our aim to do this research is to get knowledge about the

related matters as found in Theravada Buddhist teaching called Tipitika.


By doing this work, we shall have the sufficient knowledge about the successive discourses used by the Buddha. Consequently, the reader will collectively know the specific category in its full content.

Research design and methodology

Our research will take the form of critical approach. Whenever necessity demands, we shall discuss the matters by taking the relevant stories that appears in the canon. In doing so, we shall refer to the sixth Buddhist council publications that were printed in the religious affair of Yangon, Myanmar.


Our research work is very significant in the sense that it is the first approach as far as the successive talk is concerned. This work will highlight some relevant discourses that can serve as the helpful elements.

Tentative Chapterization Chapter (I) Talk on Giving (Dnakath) In this chapter, we will take accounts on the giving. We shall discuss what the actual meaning of giving is, and how giving is performed with reference to Theravda Pitaka. Accordingly, the stories that depict the benefit of giving will be taken into consideration. The notion that the giving prolongs the round of rebirth(sansra) will be dispelled. Chapter (II) Talk on Precepts (Silakath) The world is now like a battle field. The citizens of the world have no restraint in terms of body and speech. These are the outcome of the lack of precepts(sila). Therefore, it is a necessity to discuss the precepts in its entirety. This chapter will deal with the Sila with its actual meaning and its benefit by showing the applicable stories as found in various places. Chapter (III) Talk on Celestial World (Saggakath)

As said above, by keeping body and speech from committing wrong things, one can gain the advantage not only in this life but in the next life as well. These are discussed in Buddhist language as Sagga (greatness). This chapter will focus on this particular subject of

greatness. The existence of each celestial plane will also be the peripheral part of this chapter.

Chapter (IV) Talk on disadvantages of sensual pleasure (kmnamdinavakath) With the previous talk, the Buddha explains the sensual pleasure as the fruit of the giving and observing precepts. Still these pleasures are in the domain of the impermanence, suffering and non-self. Consequently, it is needed that He should point out what the real nature of these pleasures. He talks about it in different places in His teaching. This chapter will highlight what the Buddha taught regarding the sensual pleasures. Chapter(V) Talk on the path (maggakath)

As mentioned above, the aim of the appearance of the Buddha is nothing but the liberation of those who follow His teaching. The path to liberation is categorically expounded by the Buddha in line with the disposition of the listener. As far as the path is concerned, there are four stages. They are stream-winner(sotpanna), once returner(sakadgmi) , non-returner(angmi), the real Worthy(arahatta). These stages will be systematically discussed in this chapter.

Books to be used


Encyclopeldia of Buddhism. Vol. The Government of

Sri Lank, 1966. 2. Encyclopeldia Myanmar CD. ROM the Ministry of Information.

Myanmar, 1999. 3. The Essence of Buddha Abhidhamma. By Dr. Mehm Tin Mon

Yangon.Myanmar, 1995. 4. 5. Abhidhamma Lectures. By Bhaddanta Dr. Silanandabhivamsa. The Parth of Purification. By Nyanamoli Bhikkhu.London

press. 6. Sawastivada Abhidhamm. By Bhikkhu Kuala Lumpur

Dhammajoti Press Centre for Buddhist Studies. Sri Lanka, 2002. 7. The Teaching of the Buddha (Basic Level), (Higher

Level).Vol.2.Ministry Religiors Affaires. Kaba Aye Yangon. Myanmar, 1997. 8. 9. Discourse on Elements. By U Narada PTS 1962, 1977. A Designation of Human Types. By B.C. Law. PTS 1922,1979.

10. The Book of Analysis. PTS 1969, 1988 by U Thittila PTS. 1969, 1988. 11. Porker-Burma which special reference to the relations with china (rangoon.1893).p.12. 12. For a detailed treatment of Mahayana Buddhism in Pagan,G.H Luce,Old Burma early Pagan.(New york- 1969/1.p,184.ff.

13. CF.Than Tun Eassys on the History and Buddhism of Burma .(Arnan-1988).pp.85,ff. 14. Cf.Luce,Old Burma early Pagan. 15. Pali Literature of Burma (reprint,1966). 16. Luce, old Burma Pangan -1,p.79. 17. K.R.Norman,Pali Literature (wiesbaden)Otto Harrassowitz,1983). 18. Mays The Culture of south-east Asia. 19. Htin Aungs article on The Thirtyseven Lordsin the journal of Myanmar Reserch society,june ,1954. 20. Dr.Htins article on The Thirtyseven lords in the journal of the Myanmar Research society,june,1956. 21. Sir.R.C. Temple,s the Thirtyseven Nats,London,1906,p.70. 22. Htin Aungs article on the Thirtyseven lords in the journal of Myanmar Research society,june,1956. 23. Sri R.C.Temple, in preface to the thirtyseven Nats, London,1906. 24. Tin Ohns article on modern historical writing in Burmese in halls historians of south-east Asia .