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International Study and Transmission of the Tipitaka

On Saturday, February 1, 2020, the Faculty of Arts hosted International Study and Transmission of the Tipitaka, an event comprised of talks and the recitation of the Tipitaka.  The morning session at the Mahachakri Sirindhorn Building included introductory talks on the Tipitaka Sikhalai, a school for Tipitaka studies in Thailand, by Phra Maha Pongnarin; and, Insights on 2600 years of the transmission of the Tipitaka by Assoc. Prof. Supaphan Na Bangchang.  The talks on the International Study and Transmission of the Tipitaka started with the case in Sri Lanka by Phra Maha Poj Suwajo, Myanmar, by Phra Maha Pranom Thammalangaro, and Cambodia, by Trent Walker, Ph.D., a graduate from Standford University.

The morning sessions were the prelude to the afternoon highlight at the Chulalongkorn University Auditorium, the Tipitaka Recitation by the 9 Tipitakadhara from Myanmar.  Before the recitation, a sermon on Introduction to the Burmese Tradition of the Recitation of the Tipitaka was given by Phra Maha Pranom Thammalangaro.

The title of Tipitakadhara, the Bearer of the Buddhist Scriptures, is bestowed upon those who have mastered or memorized the entire Tipiṭaka in Pali, corresponding to about 8,000 pages in the Myanmar-script edition. The title is earned after an intense series of examinations.

In order to portray how the 9 Tipitakadhara are traditionally received, attempts had been made for the reception to adhere to the Burmese tradition as much as possible.  Both morning and afternoon sessions were fully attended by University students and staff and the public.