punishments for them; (3) the Samyutta-nikaya discusses Buddhist doctrine,
and includes riddles and aphorisms, ballads in mixed prose and verse and
many sayings of Buddha; (4) the Anguttara-nikaya (or Ekottara-nikaya), a
collection of sermons arranged in ascending numerical order, enumerating
doctrines and principles; and lastly (5) the Khuddaka-nikaya, an anthology of
smaller pieces, comprising fifteen books of miscellanea which are essential
for an understanding of Buddhism.
The principal texts of the Khuddaka-nikaya are often taken to include a
few of the most extensive of the Pali canonical writings. The important ones
are given below:
(a) The Khuddaka-patha: Meaning the lesser readings; It is a book for
young neophytes when they join the Sangha.
(b) The Dhammapada (the Law-path): The best known of the Buddhist
canonical texts, it is a collection of over four hundred aphoristic
verses garnered from the sayings of Buddha.
(c) The Udana: Based on the utterances of Buddha which are set in the
framework of a narrative (One of them contains the world-famous
story of the blind men who having felt an elephant, each touching a
different part or limb, report their findings, each giving a different
version: the truth being thus viewed from various aspects, as all truth
must be viewed by imperfect beings).
(d) The Itivuttaka: It contains material similar to the Udana in the form of
120 sayings which touch upon some of the deepest problems of
(e) The Suttanipata: It preserves many fragments of the oldest Buddhist
poetry and gives valuable information on the social and religious
conditions in Buddhist India.
(f) The Jataka: It comprises stories of Buddha’s former lives, which are
among the most ancient fables in world literature.
(g) The Buddhavamsa: This records legends in verse about the twenty-
four Buddhas who preceded Gautama in earlier times.
(h) The Theragatha: Literally meaning the Songs of the Elders, and
(i) The Therigatha: The Songs of the Lady Elders contains religious
lyrical poetry of a high order.
deals with the same subjects as the Sutta
The Abhidhamma Pitaka: It