Walpola Rahula


Born
Walpola, Sri Lanka

Walpola Rahula (1907–1997) was a Buddhist monk, scholar and writer. He is one of the Sri Lankan intellectuals of the 20th century. In 1964, he became the Professor of History and Religions at Northwestern University, thus becoming the first bhikkhu to hold a professorial chair in the Western world. He also once held the position of Vice-Chancellor at the then Vidyodaya University (currently known as the University of Sri Jayewardenepura). He has written extensively about Buddhism in English, French and Sinhalese. His book, What the Buddha Taught, is considered by many to be one of the best books written about Theravada Buddhism.

(from Wikipedia)

Average rating: 4.2 · 7,593 ratings · 369 reviews · 10 distinct worksSimilar authors
What the Buddha Taught

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4.21 avg rating — 7,546 ratings — published 1959 — 42 editions
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සත්‍යෝදය

4.18 avg rating — 11 ratings
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Buddhist Studies In Honour ...

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The Heritage of the Bhikkhu...

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3.55 avg rating — 11 ratings — published 1974 — 5 editions
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Humour in Pali Literature a...

4.33 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 1997
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L'insegnamento del Buddha

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භික්ෂුවගේ උරුමය

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 1 rating — published 1946
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La naturaleza y el destino ...

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Liberating Faith: Religious...

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 21 ratings — published 2003 — 4 editions
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Abhidharmasamuccaya: The Co...

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“First of all, Buddhism is neither pessimistic nor optimistic. If anything at all, it is realistic, for it takes a realistic view of life and the world. It looks at things objectively (yathābhūtam). It does not falsely lull you into living in a fool's paradise, nor does it frighten and agonize you with all kinds of imaginary fears and sins. It tells you exactly and objectively what you are and what the world around you is, and shows you the way to perfect freedom, peace, tranquility and happiness.”
Walpola Rahula, What the Buddha Taught

“The question has often been asked; Is Buddhism a religion or a philosophy? It does not matter what you call it. Buddhism remains what it is whatever label you may put on it. The label is immaterial. Even the label 'Buddhism' which we give to the teachings of the Buddha is of little importance. The name one gives is inessential.... In the same way Truth needs no label: it is neither Buddhist, Christian, Hindu nor Moslem. It is not the monopoly of anybody. Sectarian labels are a hindrance to the independent understanding of Truth, and they produce harmful prejudices in men's minds.”
Walpola Rahula, What the Buddha Taught

“There is no unmoving mover behind the movement. It is only movement. It is not correct to say that life is moving, but life is movement itself. Life and movement are not two different things. In other words, there is no thinker behind the thought. Thought itself is the thinker. If you remove the thought, there is no thinker to be found.”
Walpola Rahula, What the Buddha Taught

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