The Sutta Study Class under the tutelage of Bhante Cakkapala made its debut on August 14th 2013. The session for class of 2015 (third in its series) was completed on November 19th, two lessons beyond schedule.
One hundred and twenty students enrolled for the class this year with the average attendance of around eighty students and out of which about fifty assiduous students attended regularly.
Bhante Cakkapala was pleased with the good progress as shown by the remarkable increase in the population of the students over the years with positive feedbacks from them.
“I am glad that my teaching method was appealing to the students. I am also happy to learn that many people also benefited from my teaching notes and recordings sent to them through email”, he said.
To give precise and authentic interpretations he undertook an in-depth dissection of the topic which consumed more time than anticipated and overran the schedule of the timetable.
“During nine months’ semester comprised of fifty six hours of study time, we were unable to finish our scheduled topic on “Meditation”. We completed only three of The Noble Truths (Suffering, The cause of Suffering and The cessation of Suffering).We will continue with The Noble Eightfold Path (Magga Sacca) next year as Meditation Part II”, he added with enthusiasm.
Bhante Cakkapala recognized the fact that being a teacher was tough to run a class for nine months, but for regular students to attend such class were even harder. “They had reasons to skip classes while the teacher did not have the choice”, he chuckled.
As an assiduous student since inception of the Sutta Study Class, his method of teaching that was appealing to me, and I am sure to many others as well. I could, thus testify: “In Sutta Study Class conducted by Bhante Cakkapala, who is conversant in Pali, Burmese and English language, his method of teaching is to select a sutta pertinent to the subject and supplement it with other suttas selected from the other Nikayas and the Abhidhamma pitaka to give breadth and depth and gloss over with commentaries to elucidate and illuminate to give a precise and authentic interpretation. Commentaries are basically explanations to the suttas and citations from commentaries would invariable give a precise and authentic interpretation to the Teachings.”
“It needed unwavering faith and effort for them to attend the class regularly. Therefore, I said a big thank to the students who attended without fail”, Bhante Cakkapala further acknowledged.
Living in a modern information technology era using audio-visual media for the classroom teaching is inevitable. The audio-visual recording of the class sessions were disseminated via email to the students. They are accessible on computers and portable or hand held devices such as net books, note books, tablets, smart phones and mp3 or mp4 players.
Easy access to reading and learning the Dhamma on the move, where ever and whenever at one’s own convenience and disposal is laudable. Thus, it is indeed invaluable for revision and leisure reading for reinforcement of thoughts to enhance one’s practice, the convenience that no one can deny.
On behalf of the students of Sutta Study Class 2015 I conveyed our sincere thanks and appreciation for the knowledge that benefitted us in our daily practice.
“The gift of the Dhamma excels all other gifts. The flavour of the Dhamma excels all other flavours. The pleasure of in the Dhamma excels all other pleasures. He who has destroyed craving overcomes all sorrow.” Dhammapada 354.
Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu!
Contributor: Chin Kee Thou
Date: December 1st 2015