About – Forest Dhamma Books

Forest Dhamma Books has for many years been a charitable publisher of English translations showcasing the literary works and Dhamma teachings of Venerable Ajaan Mahā Boowa, an exceptional teacher and masterful exponent of the Thai Forest Tradition.

Many Theravādin Dhamma books contain the inscriptions: “For free distribution only” or “The gift of Dhamma excels all other gifts.” That’s because all of this inspiring literature is given away free of charge. Within the Forest Dhamma Books community, the major part of the translating, editing, formatting and artwork connected with our books has been done by monks, nuns and lay helpers who volunteer their time and energy. It is fair to say that their noble efforts have profoundly affected the lives of many people.

The Forest Dhamma narrative starts in early 1963 with the arrival at Baan Taad Forest Monastery of Ajaan Paññāvaḍḍho, who soon began translating some of Ajaan Mahā Boowa’s books on Dhamma practice into English. Because Ajaan Mahā Boowa often referred to his teachings as “Dhamma of the forest,” the first book of teachings that Ajaan Paññāvaḍḍho translated and published was entitled Forest Dhamma. Inspired by this and other translations, many Westerners came to live and practice with Ajaan Mahā Boowa, participating wholeheartedly in the unique spiritual lifestyle of the Thai Forest Tradition.

Forest Dhamma Books was initiated in Thailand in 1999 as a project to print and distribute English translations of Ajaan Mahā Boowa’s books on the teachings and the practices of the Thai Forest Tradition. All books were published in Thailand, each printing funded entirely by public donations. Dhamma books were printed solely for free distribution to any interested reader. In English-speaking countries around the world, Forest Dhamma Books set up private distribution centers that received shipments of our publications (for which our donors paid the shipping and delivery costs) and distributed them freely to individuals, Buddhist organizations and meditation and retreat centers. Using donations collected in Thailand over the ensuing years, Forest Dhamma Books printed over 200,000 Buddhist publications in English, all of which have been distributed free of charge; many of them in the United States. All Forest Dhamma’s books and other media are available for free download on this site.

At present this site offers 15 original books in English, 22 books in Thai, 7 books translated into Chinese, 5 books into Portuguese, 3 books into German, 4 books into Vietnamese, 4 books into Singhalese, 2 books into Indonesian, 2 books into Spanish, 1 book into French and 1 into Italian. In total we offer 66 Buddhist titles for free download at this link. In addition to that, all of our English-language books are now offered on the website as Audiobooks for free download.