Tobunken Seminar "Progressive Teachings in the Pāli Nikāyas"

Title: Progressive Teachings in the Pāli Nikāyas

Speaker: Prof.Francesco Sferra (Università degli Studi di Napoli L\'Orientale)

Date: 26th March 2013, 16:00 - 17:30

Venue: First Conference Room (3F), Institute for Advanced Study on Asia, University of Tokyo

Language: English

Organizer: Norihisa BABA

The lecture focuses on the category of ‘progressive teaching’, which includes the standard list of the ‘gradual instruction’ (anupubbikathā, ānupubbikathā)—namely, the instruction on dāna, sīla, sagga and, sometimes, on magga—but which can be extended also to other teachings and instructions put in a gradual order. Several texts are constructed around the idea of a progression or concatenation of teachings; however, examples of progressive teachings can be analyzed not only within individual suttas, but also within larger contexts. In some cases, a group of suttas are (or at least seem to be) connected in such a way that they function as a progressive teaching. The lecture will analyze the possibility that this category has worked as a model for the editors of the Pāli Nikāyas. An enquiry on this topic could give us some further information about the strategies adopted by the redactors of the Canon in the construction of their system.