Sanskrit/Pali Textbook class

Understanding Buddhism in the original Pali and Sanskrit

Sanskrit/Pali Textbook class at the Golden Buddha Centre

Fridays 2.00-3.30pm (odd numbered weeks) with James Whelan

Burmese tamarind-seed large script in black lacquer. © V&V London

In these Sanskrit/Pali classes one week is of the more formal kind of study. and the following week is more informal and less structured.

We call these respectively the “text book” approach and the “word clinic” approach.

Everyone is welcome to attend either or both classes.

Please note: The word-clinic is held on the even numbered weeks (see standard week-numbering system in calendars and diaries), and the textbook classes are held on the odd numbered weeks.

Click here for the Word-clinic page.


Pali. Burmese tamarind-seed large script in black lacquer.
Paginated with Burmese letters.
Interlines: decorated with snippets of gilt foliage.
Borders: decorated with gilt running acheik patterns.
Middle folio margins: (1.5 cm).; decorated with a repeating lotus pattern.
First folio recto: decorated with a series of 7 interlaced compartments filled with alternating deva and naga figures.

Burmese tamarind-seed large script in black lacquer. © V&V London

 

 

 

 

With thanks to the V&A London.

 



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3 replies

  1. Week 51 Friday 20th December – textbook class

    At the Friday 6th December class, by common consent we treated it as more of a word-clinic session. We got to the end of page 19 of Johansson’s Pali Buddhist Texts, but giving more emphasis to the analysis of individual words rather than the grammar. We did not look at the grammar book Easy Introduction to Pali.
    The preparation for the next textbook session on Friday 20th December is set out below.
    If the common consensus at any time is that a particular textbook class should take the format of a word-clinic and be more of a general discussion of the meanings of words and phrases rather than formal grammar and analytical study of a text, then of course that is what we will do.

    Advance preparation for Friday 20th December:

    Students to have prepared in advance:
    (a) up to and including lesson 3 in Easy Introduction to Pali;
    (b) from Johansson Pali Buddhist Texts: The short passage on page 23: Definition of Suffering.
    In the class (theoretically – see above):
    First 45 minutes:
    ● Discussion of any difficulties and questions arising out of lesson 3 and earlier lessons.
    ● Work through some of the exercises.
    Second 45 minutes:
    ● Analysis of the above section from Pali Buddhist Texts.

    • In the last textbook class of 2019 on 20th December we went through Lesson 3 of Easy Introduction to Pali, and the short passage Definition of Suffering at page 23 of Johansson’s Pali Buddhist Texts:
      Following discussions with students, there is a consensus that it will be useful to try an alternative textbook instead of Easy Introduction to Pali. The one I propose is Gair and Karunatillake A New Course in Reading Pali. I have got a few copies that I can give to those attending. In the meantime, I will send separately to those whose email addresses I have a scan of Lesson 1 for you to be getting on with. It will be helpful if you can prepare as much as you can before the class, understanding as much of the Pali text as you can with the aid of the grammar and vocabulary sections in that lesson.
      We can also discuss at the next class whether to continue with Johansson’s Pali Buddhist Texts. My own view is that it will be useful to carry on. Hopefully in advance of the forthcoming class you will have been able to look at the very short text in Lesson 3, and we can analyse it together.

      Some of you have been working through the translation exercises in Easy Introduction to Pali. Even if we decide as a group to discontinue use of that textbook for group class purposes, I will be more than happy to help and guide any of you who find value in doing those exercises, and go over difficulties with you. Please just ask me, and we can arrange to do that separately.

  2. Week 49 Friday 6th December – textbook class

    Advance preparation:

    Students to have prepared in advance:
    (a) up to and including lesson 3 in Easy Introduction to Pali;
    (b) from Johansson Pali Buddhist Texts: last paragraph of the passage entitled Experience Is the Only Criterion at page 19; and the short passage on page 23: Definition of Suffering.

    In the class:
    First 45 minutes:
    ● Discussion of any difficulties and questions arising out of lesson 3 and earlier lessons.
    ● Work through some of the exercises.
    Second 45 minutes:
    ● Analysis of the above sections from Pali Buddhist Texts.

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