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Sutra guidance to a beginner

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  • Sutra guidance to a beginner

    Venerable Ajahn Brahmali,

    In order to aid the meditation practice towards insight and wisdom, what sutras (in a western language) and in what order should a beginner approach them?

    The background of my question is the following: I have been practicing meditation since 2007 and I feel I hit a wall. Basically even though I have good moments during my meditation it is out of will. I can’t count my breath 10 times in a row without wandering. The technique I was taught was a bit different than the one Ajahn Brahm teaches in his book ‘Mindfulness, bliss and beyond’. I was taught to go directly into counting the breath, skipping the first two stages.

    I decided to let go my previous meditation teaching and start from scratch following Ajahn Brahm’s book. Regarding the sutras, I want to try the ones in the Pali Cannon. I don’t know why, I have faith in the teaching.

    Maybe my question is to broad, the temples I have around are mostly ethnical, they serve the community of its country of origin and I can’t find any guidance in a language I talk. I am almost practicing a DIY buddhism.

    Any direction is highly, highly appreciated.

    Thank you for this wonderful resource.

    With Metta

  • #2
    Dear Rodolfo,

    My favourite meditation suttas (at the moment!) are the Ānāpānasati Sutta (MN118) and the Dvedhāvitakka Sutta (MN19). I also quite like MN20 and AN3:101.

    But please keep in mind that, although they may seem quite straightforward when you first read them, these suttas contain a lot of information that is quite subtle. To appreciate these suttas fully, I would recommend that you listen to a sutta reading by someone knowledgeable.

    Also, it is useful to cross-reference extensively among the various suttas . The more broadly you read them, the better will be your understanding of any individual sutta. For this reason I would never recommend you to just read a selection, but rather to take a broad approach. A good place to start is with Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi's anthology In the Buddha's Words.

    With metta.


    • #3
      Thank you.


      • #4
        Thank you Venerable Ajahn Brahmali, I found the following Sutta readings on the site.
        MN 118: 25 MB file
        MN 19 : 35 MB
        MN 19 : youtube

        Withe metta, and gratitude,



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