Essential Buddhism

Jack Maguire

Essential of BuddhismFour hundred million people call themselves Buddhists today. Yet most Westerners know little about this powerful, Eastern-spawned faith. How did it begin? What do its adherents believe? Why are so many Westerners drawn to it?

In Defense of Dharma

Tessa J. Bartholomeusz

In Defence of DharmaThis is the first book to examine war and violence in Sri Lanka through the lens of cross-cultural studies on just-war tradition and theory. In a study that is textual, historical and anthropological, it is argued that the ongoing Sinhala-Tamil conflict is in actual practice often justified by a resort to religious stories that allow for war when Buddhism is in peril.

Locations of Buddhism:

Anne M. Blackburn

Locations of BuddhismModernizing and colonizing forces brought nineteenth-century Sri Lankan Buddhists both challenges and opportunities. How did Buddhists deal with social and economic change; new forms of political, religious, and educational discourse; and Christianity? And how did Sri Lankan Buddhists, collaborating with other Asian Buddhists, respond to colonial rule? To answer these questions, Anne M.

Selfless Persons

Steven Collins

This book explains the Buddhist doctrine of annattá ("not-self"), which denies the existence of any self, soul, or enduring essence in man. The author relates this doctrine to its cultural and historical context, particularly to its Brahman background. He shows how the Theravada Buddhist tradition has constructed a philosophical and psychological account of personal identity on the apparently impossible basis of the denial of self. Although the emphasis of the book is firmly philosophical, Dr.

Vision and Transformation


Sangharakshita has laid out in a clear, lucid style the essence of the Buddha's Eighfold Noble Path in terms accessible to a western reader.

Presentation of one of the formulations of the Buddha's teaching, which covers every aspect of life.

The Notion of Ditthi in Theravada Buddhism

Paul Fuller

The notion of 'view' or 'opinion' (ditthi) as an obstacle to 'seeing things as they are' is a central concept in Buddhist thought. This book considers the two ways in which the notion of views are usually understood. Are we to understand right-view as a correction of wrong-views (the opposition understanding) or is the aim of the Buddhist path the overcoming of all views, even right-view (the no-views understanding)? The author argues that neither approach is correct.

A Philological Approach to Buddhism


For those who seek to follow the early teachings of the Buddha in the earliest of the suttas and those who follow the modern commentary of John Peacock and Stephen Batchelor, it is only fitting to research their shared resource, K. R. Norman. Mr. Norman, a former foremost distinguished professor of Middle Indo-Aryan or Prakrit at Cambridge, authors a most scholarly approach and commentary to the translation of the early Pali texts. With this as a starting point it becomes more apparent when later revisions or commentary by subsequent writers are added to the cannon.

Buddha in the Crown

John Clifford Holt

Historical, anthropological, and philosophical in approach, Buddha in the Crown is a case study in religious and cultural change. It examines the various ways in which Avalokitesvara, the most well known and proliferated bodhisattva of Mahayana Buddhism throughout south, southeast, and east Asia, was assimilated into the transforming religious culture of Sri Lanka, one of the most pluralistic in Asia.

The New Buddhism

James William Coleman

Today, many in western society find themselves seeking more satisfying spiritual lives. Faiths formerly seen as exotic have suddenly become attractive alternatives in our multicultural society. This is especially true of Buddhism, which is the focus of constant media attention, thanks in part to celebrity converts, major motion pictures, and the popularity of the Dalai Lama. Following this recent trend, James Coleman argues that a new and radically different form of this ancient faith is emerging.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding Buddhism

Gary Gach

Gary Gach is like that teacher you always wanted--easygoing, full of information, able to communicate in humorous and meaningful ways, and a little bit wacky. So he's the perfect author for The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding Buddhism. In this trademark easy-to-read format, Gach introduces us to a very human Buddha, along with the rules for living that make a Buddhist a Buddhist. In addition to the various kinds of meditation, he shows us how to meditate at meals and be aware of the interconnections in life.

Early History of the Spread of Buddhism and the Buddhist Schools

Nalinaksha Dutt

Mr. Dutt's work is a compendium where all information connected with the progress of Buddha's work is available in a well-ordered form. Such a work, the details of which have been laboriously collected from the Buddhist scriptures and arranged in such a way as to enable one to see the large masses of details about Buddha's career in their logical and chronological relations, has certainly a great value not only for scholars but for ordinary readers interested in the history of the spread of Buddhism. This generally is the matter that forms the first part of this treatise.

Embodying the Dharma

David Germano and Kevin Trainor

Embodying the Dharma explores the centrality of relic veneration in Asian Buddhist cultures. Long disregarded by Western scholars as a superstitious practice reflecting the popularization of "original" Buddhism, relic veneration has emerged as a topic of vital interest in the last two decades with the increased attention to Buddhist ritual practice and material culture. This volume includes studies of relic traditions in India, Japan, Tibet, Sri Lanka, and Thailand, as well as broader comparative analyses, including comparisons of Buddhist and Christian relic veneration.

History of Buddhism in Ceylon

Walpola Rahula

Chapter I. The Indian Background
II. Pre-Buddhist Ceylon I: Social Conditions
III. Pre-Buddhist Ceylon II: Religious Conditions
IV. The Establishment of Buddhism
V. Buddhism as State Religion
VI. Years of Development – I
VII. Years of Development – II
VIII. The Monastery I: Its Structure
IX. The Monastery II: Its Administration
X. The Monastic Life I: Its Developments
XI. The Monastic Life II: Its Activities
XII. The Monastic Life III: Its Ascetic Ideal
XIII. Arahants in Ceylon

Admirable Friendship


Kalyāṇa-mittatā (Pali; Skt.: -mitratā) is a Buddhist concept of "spiritual friendship" within Buddhist community life, applicable to both monastic and householder relationships. One involved in such a relationship is known as a "good friend," "virtuous friend," "noble friend" or "admirable friend" (kalyāṇa mitta, -mitra).

As he was sitting there, Ven. Ananda said to the Blessed One,
“This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie.”