On Recording Buddhist Teachings

This all started innocently enough… Back in 2010, I was working at a local bookstore, spending many hours a day looking at small print, and cleaning and pricing books. On account of this, my eyesight started to suffer, and after work I found it more difficult to read. This made me think of what I would miss most of all if I couldn’t read…

 

What came to mind right away was the Mahayana prayers and poetry I had come to love the most.

Using a Sony PCM D50, I made my first recordings of these texts, and would listen to them in the morning or on the way to work, or again at night.

      

I found that listening to the spoken word is different than reading.  A person can be more receptive in a way. Over the next couple of years, I recorded some of my favorite books. Here’s what I’ve had the great good fortune to record so far:

1. Mahayana Prayers and Poetry

2. The Dhammapada, translated by P.Lal

3. The Treatise on Buddha Nature

4. A Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, by Shantideva

5. An Exhortation to Resolve Upon Bodhi

6. The Medicine Buddha Sutra

7. The Perfection of Wisdom in 8,000 Lines, and It’s Verse Summary; The Diamond Sutra, and The Heart Sutra (16 hours)

(here is an article on my recording this Sutra)

8. Selections from The Perfection of Wisdom in 8,000 Lines (one hour), and,

9. Dharma Readings

Over the last month, (from mid- October to mid-November of 2017) I’ve put these all online for anyone to enjoy, and to download, free of charge. I happened by accident to find out how easy it is to do this, and so I felt like I should share all these now. What unusual times we live in! It’s now easier than ever to record a book, at little or no cost, and to share it with others.

I would like to also record a few more of my favorite Dharma books, should I have the time and opportunity. On my list are: The Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra, The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Zen Patriarch, and one or more of Thich Nhat Hanh’s books.

These works are among the treasures we’ve inherited, being born on this magnificent earth, at this time. Finding the time to read may be difficult for some, but we can listen to teachings such as these on the way to and from work, or while cooking or cleaning, when we first wake up, or before go to sleep.

There is magic in words, no doubt. We have to work on ourselves, it is true, and, at the same time, it’s also true that we have the blessings of great teachers to help us and to guide us.

And so I offer these with the wish that we will all benefit from the resources available to us, that we become spiritually healthy and strong on account of this, and all help each other as much as we can, forever.

{See also: The Power of the Word – a justification}

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