from

I have been trying to restrain myself from opinion. At times in reading all these books, opinion wells up and begins to turn to prose in my head. It has quite a force, as prose formation often does. And when it happens, I have the thought that I might write down some of the prose. But I hope to keep remembering I am new at all this thought & history and it’s better to wait a fairly long while, an increasingly long while perhaps.

The scriptures arrived yesterday. A selection edited by Edward Conze in 1959. Up to now I hadn’t read anything written before the 1970s. From the introduction: “The bulk of the selections in this book was written down between A.D. 100 and 400, in other words about 600 to 900 years after the Buddha’s demise. For the first five hundred years the Scriptures were orally transmitted.”