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An Introduction to Buddhism: Teachings, History and Practices (Introduction to Religion)
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An Introduction to Buddhism: Teachings, History and Practices (Introduction to Religion)

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  108 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Paperback. Pub Date: 1990 Pages: 396 Publisher: Camidge. University Press This book is a comprehensive introduction to The Buddhist tradition as it has developed in three major cultural areas in Asia and also developed in the West. It is intended to be a textbook for students of religious and Asian studies respectively. but will also be of interest to those who want a gene ...more
Paperback, 396 pages
Published May 25th 1990 by Cambridge University Press
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By far the best intro to Buddhism
But this is for those with an academic bent -- not for those who just want to try meditating.
Harvey is a great author and shows all sides of the various types of Buddhism.
Just as Christianity has more than a hundred sects (OK, they like to call theirs "denominations"), so does Buddhism.
There is no one thing called Buddhism. And each claims to be the original teaching. Yawn.

Humans are so predictable.
Jake Bornheimer
This book brings both scholarly accuracy and readability. An excellent introduction to the many and varied facets of Buddhism. It covers all the bases: the Southern, Eastern, and Northern varieties. I highly recommend this book for any prospective students of Buddhism.
I am re-reading this because its for my exams. Buddhism is such an inspiring religion for me because it is very well versed in the practicalities of highly intense spiritual work i.e. meditation, which is light years away from the practise of all but very few Buddhists but is just about within my realm. This comes from its very strong monastic tradition. It is also runs parallel to Christianity in many ways (Buddha the man that became Dhamma v.s. Jesus the God that became man) and it is very fai ...more
I've read a little about Buddhism but got really specialists advices and this one is so far my favorite. It's really concerned about a scientific perspective, gives you a lot of histories from the sutras and it's very extensive about the developments of Buddhism. It's neither a "propaganda" book to answer questions of health or mental states, which is very annoying from a historian perspective, but more about what is buddhism historically and also philosophically (the authors really dig into phi ...more
Frank Jude
Sep 21, 2008 Frank Jude rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: All interested in the wealth and breadth of Buddhist traditions.
Recommended to Frank Jude by: I first read it for Seminary. This time I read it for MA in Budd
An excellent 'all-round' introduction, it strength is particularly in its treatment of history, major philosophical themes, and practices. Its weakness is due to its age. First published in 1990, its treatment of 'contemporary' Buddhism is terribly dated. However, reading it today makes the dramatic changes in the last 18 years all the more impressive.

I'd recommend this to anyone wishing to explore the over-arching traditions of Buddhism up to the last century.
A great and comprehensive introduction to Buddhism - read it together with some source texts!
This book has really great information, but the writing is very dry and hard to get through. My first Buddhism teacher got sick, and our new professor thinks this book is a snooze. I would give it two stars, but the substance of the text is very thorough for an introductory text.
Utile come introduzione generica per i non specialisti.
A tratti affetto da un approccio un po' troppo "confessionale" e poco critico.
A thorough introduction to Buddhism. One of the best out there.
Very good, but a bit too in depth to quite be termed an introduction.
A thorough introduction to the Buddhist religion.
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