Buddhist Thought: A Complete Introduction to the Indian Tradition

Buddhist Thought: A Complete Introduction to the Indian Tradition

Buddhist Thought: A Complete Introduction to the Indian Tradition

Buddhist Thought: A Complete Introduction to the Indian Tradition

Synopsis

Buddhist Thought guides the reader towards a richer understanding of the central concepts of classical Indian Buddhist thought, from the time of Buddha, to the latest scholarly perspectives and controversies. Abstract and complex ideas are made understandable by the authors' lucid style. Of particular interest is the up-to-date survey of Buddhist Tantra in India, a branch of Buddhism where strictly controlled sexual activity can play a part in the religious path. Williams' discussion of this controversial practice as well as of many other subjects makes Buddhist Thought crucial reading for all interested in Buddhism.

Excerpt

The purpose of this book is straightforward. It is to serve as an accessible guide for students wishing to reach as quickly as possible a familiarity with the basic ideas of Buddhist philosophical and religious thought, and the results of some of the latest research in the field. A good understanding of the way Buddhism developed in India is an essential prerequisite for any appreciation of Buddhist ideas elsewhere, in Tibet, China, or Japan and the other countries of East Asia.

The book aims to give a comprehensive first survey of Buddhist thought, devoting adequate balanced space to basic, early, and mainstream Indian Buddhism, the views of some of the philosophical schools, Mahāyāna religious and philosophical developments, and the often neglected and inadequately understood topic of Tantric Buddhism. It will also serve as an introduction to Buddhism as such, providing the reader remembers that the interests of the authors are mainly in religious and philosophical thought, that is, essentially in doctrines. There is of course much more to a religion as something lived by all its members at all levels in history and society than its ideas on these topics—no matter how central they might be. But it is arguable that without a good grounding in Buddhist doctrine it is very difficult for the student to gain a proper appreciation of what is going on in Buddhism as it occurs in the day to day lives of Buddhists themselves.

The authors of this book have between them many years of experience in teaching Buddhism at school and university level. They have also taught Buddhist thought in the context of centres

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.