ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Buddhadasa Bhikkhu (Slave of the Buddha) went forth as a bhikkhu (Buddhist monk) in 1926, at the age of twenty. After a few years of study in
Ajahn Buddhadasa has worked painstakingly to establish and explain the correct and essential principles of original Buddhism. That work is based in extensive research of the Pali texts (Canon and commentary), especially of the Buddha's Discourses (sutta pitaka), followed by personal experiment and practice with these teachings. Then he has taught whatever he can say truly quenches dukkha. His goal has been to produce a complete set of references for present and future research and practice. His approach has been always scientific, straight forward, and practical.
Although his formal education only went as far as seventh grade and beginning Pali studies, he has been given five Honorary doctorates by Thai universities. His books both written and transcribed from talks, fill a room at the National Library and influence all serious Thai Buddhists.
Progressive elements in Thai society, especially the young, have been inspired by his teaching and selfless example. Since the 1960's, activists and thinkers in areas such as education, social welfare, and rural development have drawn upon his teaching and advice.
Since the founding of Suan Mokkh, he has studied all schools of Buddhism, as well as the major religious traditions. This interest is practical rather than scholarly. He seeks to unite all genuinely religious people in order to work together to help free humanity by destroying selfishness. This broadmindedness has won him friends and students from around the world, including Christians, Muslims, Hindus, and Sikhs.
Now he focuses his energies on his last project, establishing an International Dhamma Hermitage. This addition to Suan Mokkh is intended to provide facilities for:
- courses which introduce friends, foreign and Thai, to the natural truth explained in the Buddha's teachings and start them in the Buddha's system of mental cultivation
- gatherings of representatives from the different religious communities of Thailand (and later the world) in order to meet, develop mutual good understanding, and cooperate for the sake of world peace
- meeting among Buddhists from around the world to discuss and agree upon the "Heart of Buddhism"
Actual results must depend on Natural Law, as Ajahn Buddhadasa and his helpers continue to explore the potential of mindfully wise actions within Nature according to the Law of Nature. He welcomes visitors.
ABOUT THE TRANSLATORS
Rod Bucknell first became seriously interested in Buddhism in the mid-1960's, when, during a visit to
Santikaro Bhikkhu has lived at Suan Mokkh since 1985. Having arrived with a Thai language background from four years of service in the U.S. Peace Corps, he was soon put to work translating. When Ajahn Buddhadasa began giving lectures to foreign retreatants, Santikaro Bhikkhu was trained to render these lectures into English. His ability to do so was aided by Ajahn Buddhadasa's advice and support. The Venerable Ajahn found this kind of practice and service beneficial for himself after he founded Suan Mokkh, so he encouraged others to try it. He frequently discussed the mechanics of translating and the subtleties of English with the translator, in addition to clarifying Dhamma points about which the translator was unsure. Santikaro Bhikkhu is now acting Abbot of Suan Atammayatarama.