Book Description: Ancient words of the Buddha ("awakened one") that can become a companion for your own spiritual journey. The Dhammapada ("Path of the Buddha's Teachings") is a daily inspiration for millions of Buddhists all over the world and for people of all spiritual traditions who have been impressed by its beauty and power. These words—believed to have been spoken by the Buddha himself over 2,500 years ago—contain most of Buddhism's central teachings. Originally composed in the ancient language of Pali, this timeless text concisely and inspirationally portrays the route a person travels as he or she advances toward enlightenment. With poetic sequence and rhythm, the Dhammapada describes the fundamental role of mental conditioning in making us who we are. It paints contrasting portraits of three levels of our human existence—the fool, the wise one, and the enlightened one—and addresses specific aspects of experience, conduct, and belief that characterize our transformation from one of these modes of being to another. Now you can experience the Dhammapada with understanding even if you have no previous knowledge of Buddhism. This SkyLight Illuminations edition offers insightful yet unobtrusive commentary that explains references and philosophical terms, shares the inspiring interpretations of famous spiritual teachers, and gives you deeper insight into the text.