From Access to Insight to

History with

In early 1996, John Bullitt asked me to provide a few translations from the Pāli Canon for his fledgling website, Access to Insight. What began as a casual project quickly grew to a major production in the years 1997–98, as the positive response to the initial translations showed a widespread desire for clear, reliable English translations of the Buddha’s teachings, available free of charge. Although I have pursued other projects in the years since, I have continued providing translations as time has allowed. Currently the sutta translations on Access to Insight number more than 1,000, most of them mine. The website as a whole—thanks to John’s scrupulous care and selfless gift of his time—has become a premier source for people all over the world who are interested in reliable reading materials on the Theravāda tradition.

Authoritative collection now on

Now that John’s interests have moved in another direction, Access to Insight is currently closed to new input. As a result, I have decided to gather my translations of suttas from the Dīgha, Majjhima, Saṁyutta, Aṅguttara, and Khuddaka Nikāyas on Access to Insight, plus new translations of suttas done since the website was frozen, and offer them on this website, I expect that the collection will grow as I find time to translate even more suttas.

I have taken the opportunity to standardize the translations as much as possible, bringing my earlier translations into line with more recent ones and making them more accurate. Any mistakes that remain in these translations are entirely my own. If you notice any, please inform the site administrator at so that they can be corrected in the future.

So please note that the translations published here and in the Handful of Leaves anthologies supplant the versions available on Access to Insight for the purpose of study and reference by citation.


Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu

Metta Forest Monastery

Valley Center, CA  92082–1409 USA

April, 2017