Some Favorite Audio Books
I occasionally encounter those new to Buddhism requesting books that are good starting places. Although I’m always tempted to guide folks to Access to Insight’s Web page on Beginnings, that’s not really a book.
Among the most frequently recommended books, are Walpola Rahula‘s What the Buddha Taught (available from Dharma Audiobooks) and Henepola Gunaratana‘s Mindfulness in Plain English (available from Audible). Both are excellent choices and are nicely complementary.
My favorite, however, is for those who wish to plow directly into the rich field of the Pāḷi Suttas (in English Translation, of course). For that, I suggest Bhikkhu Bodhi’s book, In the Buddha’s Words, the Dhamma Wheel discussion forum’s post, In the Buddha’s Words — Open Source Version, and the corresponding information here on Bhante Sujato’s SuttaCentral. However, as an audiobook, the unabridged text is available from Audiobookstand as two MP3 encoded CD disks. Tragically, their reader hadn’t the vaguest idea how any of the Pāḷi terms are pronounced, so, for example, ‘th‘ is pronounced as in ‘thing’ (Ouch!). Nonetheless, the price is modest, and Bhikkhu Bodhi’s efforts to provide a coherent structure (using selections from the principle Nikayas) are truly worth a listen.
My favorite reader (and one who can be relied upon to provide excellent pronunciation as well as heartfelt readings of significant biographies) is Ajahn Dick Sīlaratano , a longtime student (and translator) of Ajahn Mahā Boowa as well as being the founder and abbot of Forest Dhamma Monastery. For anyone who aspires to get a real feeling for the Thai Forest Tradition, I suggest his audio renditions as an extraordinarily wonderful way to do so.
Author Title Website Format Ajahn Maha Bua Ñānasampanno, translated by Ajahn Dick Silaratano Ācariya Mun Bhuridatta Thera,
A Spiritual Biography
Ajahn Dick Sīlaratano Uncommon Wisdom, Life and Teachings of Ajaan Paññvaḍḍho Forestdhamma.org EPUB MOBI MP3 Ajahn Mahā Boowa Ñānasampanno, translated by Ajahn Dick Sīlaratano Ajaan Khao Anālayo Forestdhamma.org EPUB MOBI MP3 AZW3
Ajahn Dick Sīlaratano Mae Chee Kaew,
Her Journey to Spiritual Awakening & Enlightenment
Forestdhamma.org EPUB MOBI MP3