Buddhagunagathavali (Romanized Pali)

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Item Code: MZF385
Author: Acariya Goenka
Publisher: Vipassana Research Institute
Language: Pali
Edition: 1999
ISBN: 9788174142010
Pages: 176
Other Details 8.50 X 5.50 inch
Weight 190 gm
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Book Description

The conception and composition of ‘Buddhagunagathavali’ has given me joyous satisfaction. My poetic creativity has been fulfilled. I felt so much rapture and bliss at the time of composing these verses and I continue to feel the same when I read them again and again now. The pious recollection of the Buddha's qualities generates delight in the whole of my being. It is only natural that my grateful mind becomes filled with such emotions while singing the praise of the Lord Buddha whose teaching has made my life so worthwhile and so fruitful. Indeed, the immeasurable Buddha’s qualities are also infinite.

Pali language, a dialect of ancient India, that preserved the pure Dhamma is also no less glorious. Therefore choosing a few gems from the store of jewels of Pali and studding them in the verses became easy. The heart of a poet likes alliteration to add beauty to his creation. The vast vocabulary of Pali became useful for my proclivity to compose in this style. I could easily choose suitable words. A few of my Vipassana students are expert linguists. They gave suggestions to make the verses in strict accordance with the rules of grammar. May they be happy! May they share my merits.

The final draft of the verses was sent to my motherland Myanmar’s greatest Pali scholar Bhadanta Panditabhivamsa, Agga Maha Pandita, Agga Maha Ganthavacaka Pandita, Rector of the State Pariyatti Sdsana University, Yangon, who had been giving me valuable suggestions in the past.

He read the verses in spite of his extremely busy schedule and has sent me his precious blessings. I am grateful to him. May my devotion and gratitude towards him continue to grow! May he ~ share my merits! May his blessings help in the rejuvenation of Pali language in India and may India benefit from the jewel of Dhamma preserved in Pali!

I have also received blessings from Bhadanta Rajadhammabhivamsa, learned Dhammiacariya Mahanayaka Sayadaw of the Dhammadayada Monastery, New Masoyein Institute of Mandalay. I am extremely grateful to him. His blessings are also very valuable to me.

The number of Vipassana mediators in India is rapidly growing. Many of these get enthused to learn the mother tongue of the Buddha. These verses will not only improve their Pali vocabulary but also the attendant Buddhanussati (while reading these verses) will make their meditation stronger.

Computer technology made it easy to transliterate and publish the verses easily in seven scripts in which the collection is published. May these verses bring welfare to the Pali students and followers of the Buddha’s path in the respective countries.


The most concise attribute of the Buddha is the single word ‘Sammasambuddha’. One can expand this into two attributes, ‘Araham Sammasambuddho’ by adding the word ‘Araham’; or one may express, with devotion, the nine attributes of the Buddha somewhat more comprehensively as ‘Itipi so Bhagava Araham..., Buddho Bhagava.’ But according to the verse beginning with ‘Asankhyeyyani namani sagunena mahesino...’ (Dha. Sa. Attha. 1313; Udana Attha. 53) the attributes of the Buddha are infinite. Even the most Venerable Sariputta who was praised by the Buddha for his great intellectual ability cannot encompass in his mental field the whole extent of the glories and virtues of the Buddha. The devotee can visualise the Buddha's attributes only as much as his intellectual attainment is capable. (Di. Ni. Attha. 3.141).

The attributes of the Buddha have been extolled and praised by those who comprehend and appreciate them since the time of the Buddha. Upali, a householder of Nalanda was, at first, not a disciple of the Buddha. He was a follower of the Jain teacher, Niganthanataputta. Then he heard the Dhamma taught by the Buddha and became an Ariya disciple (Sotapanna). When Upali was questioned explicitly by his old teacher, ‘You have all along been known by the king and all the people as a disciple of Niganthanataputta, now how should you be regarded as to whose disciple you are?’ ‘In that case,’ Upali replied, turning himself with palms raised towards the direction where Buddha was, ‘please listen to know whose disciple | am now.’ And he recited ; ten verses, each of which extolled ten attributes of the Buddha. i Thus by describing one hundred virtues of, the Buddha in ten verses, he made it clear to his old teacher that he had become an Ariya disciple of the Buddha. In like manner, the many attributes of the Buddha can be found dispersed in all the Pitakas.

Everyone who sees and appreciates the glories of the Buddha and treasures the Dhamma he taught, very highly honours the Buddha by reciting them in reverence and devotion.

Authors of Scriptural expositions, Ganthakarakas, always begin their works with a verse of salutation to the Buddha. And ancient teachers had composed many verses of worship (Mahanamakkara) based on their own intuition and stanzas on the thirty-two marks of superman (dvattimsa Mahapurisalakkhana).

The great teacher of Vipassana, Guruji Goenka, has honoured the Buddha, in great reverence, by composing one thousand verses, extolling the many attributes, virtues of the Buddha: we have found that the verses form a complete array of the Buddha's glories and attributes as described in the Pitakas.

That a lay devotee such as Guruji who has not studied the Pitakas like the bhikkhus in the monasteries has realised such a comprehensive grasp and appreciation of the innumerable qualities of the Buddha is a matter of great wonder and admiration.

For easy and felicitous recitation, each stanza is composed of four lines, each line being made up of eight words.

Much merit will be gained if Guruji's verses are chanted as an aid to the practice of Buddhanussati meditation, recollection of the virtues of the Buddha.

Guruji Goenka will surely be commemorated in the Annals of the Sasanas as a person of erudition who has honoured the Buddha. in reverence and devotion, with one thousand Pali verses glorifying the Buddha's attributes and virtues.

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