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Teachings of the Buddha

4.24 of 5 stars 4.24  ·  rating details  ·  962 ratings  ·  44 reviews
This treasury of essential Buddhist writings draws from the most popular Indian, Tibetan, Chinese, and Japanese sources. Among the selections are some of the earliest recorded sayings of the Buddha on the practice of freedom, passages from later Indian scriptures on the perfection of wisdom, verses from Tibetan masters on the enlightened mind, and songs in praise of medita ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published March 9th 2004 by Shambhala (first published 1993)
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This is just a little book, but it's probably my favorite of the Buddha's teachings. I don't know if it's Kornfield's translations (which are beautiful) or the selections, but this is the book that sits on my nightstand, or next to my computer, or on my desk to work. It is the source I go to when I need a prayer, or a lesson, or something to share with a friend. Really a beautiful little book.
There is no fire like greed. No crime like hatred.
No sorrow like separation.
No sickness like hunger of heart, And no joy like the joy of freedom. Health and contentment, and trust are your greatest possessions, and freedom your greatest joy. Look within, Be still. Free from fear and attachment, know the sweet joy of living in the way.
A collection of sayings, parables, teachings, exhortations attributed to the Buddha. Some cryptic, some inscrutable, but Kornfield has obviously mined the scriptural canon well; each page either shines outrightly, or hints of some pearl to be sought with deeper digging.

A few favorites:

As in the ocean's midmost depth no wave is born, but all is still, so let the practitioners be still, be motionless, and nowhere should they swell.

See yourself in others.
Then whom can you hurt?
What harm ca
Relleasy Harrison
i gave this book to my beloved brother Trav. He is a Buddhist and he enjoyed it. the books talks a lot about patience and controlling your anger.
Bruno Martinez-Leo
Great book for introduction to understanding Buddhism. Really enjoyed reading and re-reading several of its pages. It's not a book you just read but truly meditate, re-read and think over again. I do really recommend it.
G.C. Neff
Teachings of the Buddha is a nice take-along book, whether in pocket or purse. It does have a good number of quotes from the Buddha, and the messages are soothing.

However, it's difficult for me to put these teachings side by side with the daily life of those in our current society. It's more easy for me to imagine these teachings to be for the monks, not the general public. In fact, in many of these quotes, the Buddha is speaking to those around him, not people of the world outside the monastery
A very readable interpretation of Buddhist teachings from various sects and teachers of Buddhism from all over the world. Simply splendid.
Clark Hallman
Teachings of the Buddha, edited by Jack Kornfield, presents selections of Buddhist writings from Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and Tibetan bodhisattvas (awakened beings who have followed and taught the wisdom of the Buddha). Kornfield, who trained as a Buddhist monk in Southeast Asia, cofounded Insight Meditation Center in Barre, Massachusetts and Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, California and has shared his knowledge of Buddhism though numerous excellent books. For this collection, Korn ...more
B. Rule
This book was hugely influential for me when I was probably 14 years old, so it was interesting to revisit it. It's a great collection for such a brief volume. The quotations are bite-sized and really better suited to dipping into rather than reading straight through. Read as a whole, it gets a little repetitive and there's not a lot of technical depth to the Buddhist dogmas presented, but this is a great volume to get a flavor of Buddhism generally and to offer a focus for meditation or contemp ...more
Buddhism is a beautiful philosophy that never ceases to help me see things differently and grow into the person I want to become. Some of the Buddha teachings are very helpful, and many are still very far over my head. This book is one of those gems that you must return to infinitely.
A inspirational collection of Buddhist sayings from ancient and modern writers. Not a book to be read cover-to-cover in one sitting, but a book for reflection after each passage. The shorter passages of the ancients struck me as the most meaningful and insightful; for example, "Meditate. Live purely. Be quiet. Do your work, with mastery." (from the Dhammapada)--simple, yet layered with meaning. Some of the longer passages were pedantic, due often to repetitions of the same idea with minor variat ...more
Annie Grigg
Picked this up at the library out of curiosity. Bought it at chapters the next day. Absolutely love it. Really fills the soul and truly is a book you can learn from and apply towards a happier life.
Trey Nowell
Excellent practices for everyday life, highly recommended for people wishing to detach from the world we live in and enjoy the present moment.
William Wood
one of the most profound little books I have ever read
Travelling Sunny
I thought this was going to be something else. This is more like reading Aesop's Fables, except these are by/about the Buddha. But, without a basic understanding of Buddhist history, many of the tales didn't easily make sense to me. (I'm looking at you, Zen Master Dogen, and your 'Actualizing the Fundamental Point' section.)

Nevertheless, I enjoyed quite a few from the Dhammapada, which makes me want that in its entirety. Some of my favorites were 'Wakefulness', 'Harmlessness', 'Virtue', and 'Joy
Andrew Vidal
I thought this was a decent collection of the Buddha's teachings from such various sources as the Dhammapada, the Nikayas, the Sutras, as well as snippets from Tibetan and Zen texts. Due to its broad scope, I wouldn't recommend this to someone looking for in-depth instruction on the teachings, but as something to keep on the coffee table and flip through whenever one could use a reminder of the benefits attained from living a life mindfulness and contemplation.
Brian  Baker
I read this book fast, not because it was boring but because it's not the type of book you read, it's one that you keep on the shelf and when the moment is right you read it again, and refer to it later for inspiration in life.

I recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn about the Buddha's teachings. This is a book everyone should have, regardless of beliefs.
Jack Forge
An excellent sampling of the teachings of Siddhārtha Gautama! I tried books on Zen by D.T. Suzuki in my youth but did not glean more than an abiding curiosity. Since then I have been interested in knowing Buddhism. This little book makes it easy for one to understand and absorb the lessons of one of the greatest masters of human living.
Was a good read, took a while to give it justice but doesn't paint a picture of modern Buddhism. it's snippets of the general beliefs that started the religion and nothing about what has changed and not. A good start though to now if you would want to learn more (not necessarily if you wanted to convert) about the culture and religion.
How can you go wrong with beautiful, short, well written lessons and thoughts from the Buddha? You can't. I like to use it as a sort of divination when I am having a problem by just letting the book open randomly and reading that passage. There is always a truth or learning that can be applied to whatever I am going through.
Very brief explanation of the the teachings of the Buddha. It is a very small book. I bought in this book in the days before e-reading. In those days size mattered when deciding what to read on an airplane. I recommend this as a great pocket read. Something to read on an airplane, train, or bus.
Going through this one over and over again, which is why I can simultaneously give it five stars and still categorize the book as "currently-reading"! Great, short, quick wisdom for day-to-day life. It fits well with my pathetic attention span :)
An excellent, well-rounded collection containing most of the Buddha's basic teachings (or teachings said to be by him). The texts are from multiple translators, and are generally very readable and easy to understand.
Steven Stark
This is a great series of short teachings attributed to the Buddha, mixed with those from more recent followers. It's a great book to just open randomly and read a section, which is usually just a page or two.
Aug 28, 2008 Aaron rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Students of religion, students of buddhism
Shelves: religion, philosophy
Enlightening. The concepts contained within this volume of works could be universally applicable. It's an interesting moral framework, especially in these days of absolute extremes.
Aug 12, 2010 Jo rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: buddhism
This is one of my favorite collections of Buddhist writings, and a frequent choice for early morning readings. Many thanks to Jack Kornfield for the masterful selections!
borrowed from brendan. i read this in snippets over time. some translations were more clear than others. overall, a nice collection of writings with much food for thought.
Another in my learn about the world series.. don't worry, you won't shave your head,, just relax and learn a little about the world.
Phillip Moffitt
This collection of the Buddha’s teachings is an excellent reference and makes for good daily inspirational reading.
Apr 27, 2010 Shan is currently reading it
This will be an ongoing 'currently reading'. I doubt I'll review it as much as enjoy it and gain inspiration.
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Jack Kornfield trained as a Buddhist monk in the monasteries of Thailand, India and Burma. He has taught meditation internationally since 1974 and is one of the key teachers to introduce Buddhist mindfulness practice to the West. He began his training after graduating from Dartmouth College in Asian Studies in 1967. Then he joined the Peace Corps and was assigned to the Public Health Service in no ...more
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“Great Discourse on Blessings AT one time the Exalted One was living in Jeta Grove. A certain deity of astounding beauty approached the Exalted One and said: Many deities and humans have pondered on blessings. Tell me the blessings supreme. The Buddha replied: To associate not with the foolish, to be with the wise, to honor the worthy ones this is a blessing supreme. To reside in a suitable location, to have good past deeds done, to set oneself in the right direction this is a blessing supreme. To be well spoken, highly trained, well educated, skilled in handicraft, and highly disciplined, this is a blessing supreme. To be well caring of mother, of father, to look after spouse and children, to engage in a harmless occupation, this is a blessing supreme. Outstanding behavior, blameless action, open hands to all relatives and selfless giving, this is a blessing supreme. To cease and abstain from evil, to avoid intoxicants, to be diligent in virtuous practices, this is a blessing supreme. To be reverent and humble, content and grateful, to hear the Dharma at the right time, this is a blessing supreme. To be patient and obedient, to visit with spiritual people, to discuss the Dharma at the right time, this is a blessing supreme. To live austerely and purely, to see the noble truths, and to realize nirvana, this is the blessing supreme. A mind unshaken when touched by the worldly states, sorrowless, stainless, and secure, this is the blessing supreme. Those who have fulfilled all these are everywhere invincible; they find well-being everywhere, theirs is the blessing supreme. adapted from MANGALA SUTTA, translated by Gunaratana Mahathera” 0 likes
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