What the Buddha Taught

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What the Buddha Taught
What the Buddha Taught (Walpola Rahula book).jpg
AuthorWalpola Rahula
PublisherOneworld Publications
Publication date

What the Buddha Taught, by Theravadin Walpola Rahula, is a widely used introductory book on Buddhism for non-Buddhists.[1] Using quotes from the sutras, Rahula gives his personal interpretation of what he regards to be Buddhism's essential teachings, including the Four Noble Truths, the Buddhist mind, the Noble Eightfold Path, meditation and mental development, and the world today.[2]

According to Gimello, Rahula's book is an example of so-called Protestant Buddhism, and "was created in an accommodating response to western expectations, and in nearly diametrical opposition to Buddhism as it had actually been practised in traditional Theravada."[note 1]

Publication data[edit]

  • Rahula, Walpola What The Buddha Taught, Oneworld Publications: Oxford, (1959) (revised 1974). ISBN 0-8021-3031-3


  1. ^ Gimello (2004), as quoted in Taylor (2007).[3]



  • Anderson, Carol (2001), Pain and Its Ending: The Four Noble Truths in the Theravada Buddhist Canon, Motilall Banarsidas
  • Taylor, Philip (2007), Modernity and Re-enchantment: Religion in Post-revolutionary Vietnam, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies

External links[edit]