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Buddhism: One Teacher, Many Traditions

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  87 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Explore the common ground underlying the diverse expressions of the Buddha's teachings with two of Tibetan Buddhism's bestselling authors.

Buddhism is practiced by hundreds of millions of people worldwide, from Tibetan caves to Tokyo temples to redwood retreats. To an outside viewer, it might be hard to see what they all have in common. In Buddhism, His Holiness the Dalai L
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published November 11th 2014 by Wisdom Publications
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3.98  · 
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 ·  87 ratings  ·  14 reviews

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Aug 12, 2015 rated it liked it
I didn't get as much out of the historical perspective/ comparing different Buddhist traditions aspect of this book as I'd hoped. Whenever I got frustrated, though, I just pictured the Dalai Lama's beatific smile and heard his goofy laugh. If you work your way through carefully (and take notes), this book will give you insights and suggestions for beginning to understand Buddhism and to initiate practices/ start the path. "May you be happy and free from suffering! May you be free from hostility, ...more
William Dury
Mar 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Okay, here’s the thing. You know the whole secular Buddhist thing? It exists because if you begin to dig into traditional Buddhism they are at least as wacky and superstitious as Christians. As you begin to develop your “spirituality”* you’ll be able to “...make our body into many bodies and then absorb these bodies back into a single body. We can become invisible, appearing and vanishing at will, pass through walls and mountains with ease, go under the earth, walk on water, and fly in space,” ( ...more
Sparrow Knight
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: dharma
As a Zen priest who also studies w/local Gelugpa group, I have often wondered about what the differences might be between the two traditions. This book is an excellent brief exploration of the many varieties, broken down basically into two: Pali & Sanskrit, rather than the more traditional Hinayana/Theravada vs Mahayana (which I have always found to be more pejorative than helpful). Hi Holiness emphasizes the similarities, while not overlooking the nuanced differences. There is also an occas ...more
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent overview and cross comparison of the Pali and Sanskrit traditions. Suitable for beginners and experienced dharma students.
May 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
I understand this book was largely written by Thubten Chodron, but if the Dalai Lama has any input, better put his name in bigger print I suppose. The book is heavy in summing up doctrine. It covers 4 noble truths, 16 aspects, 8 fold path, 37 wings to awakening, and so on. So it can be somewhat tedious to read if you are already familiar. Bear though the emphasis on Madhyamaka logic. It is a fine introductory work. The more significant aspect of the book is about looking at similarities and diff ...more
Aug 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Some of the reasoning employed in this book is eerily reminiscent of medieval western religious philosophy...but without the rigor and making what seem to be basic errors (eg missing the ancient distinction between potency and act). There is also a great deal of supernaturalism and the credulous reporting of such things as a person appearing in two places at once, etc. The discussions of rebirth (samsara) are outright sophistical, and I’d be upset with s fist year philosophy student exhibiting s ...more
Oct 31, 2014 rated it liked it
I'm still reeling from the complexity of this book. I would not recommend to anyone outside of 'Buddhist master' status.
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
I picked this up hoping for a good one overview of differences in Buddhist countries around the world. There was a good start in the early chapters, but then it seemed to go into very deep doctrinal nuances that lost me. I’m not a practicing Buddhist but I’ve lived in two countries with significant Buddhist populations (Cambodia, Japan). For me it was too much of the Buddhist tendency for lists and not enough comparison to daily ritual, tradition, etc. Readers looking for what I was looking for ...more
Chet Taranowski
Jun 04, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a good review of the many variants of Buddhist practice. I would say it is more scholarly than inspirational. It is not always an easy read and should have included a glossary for the terms.
Ariadne Deborah Fassel
Jun 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is not a book to be galloped through but needs a thoughtful reading, probably more than once. I am glad I have studied enough about Buddhism that most of it was at least familiar. I could have wished for a pronunciation guide for the Sanskrit terms.
Donald Sherer
Mar 26, 2018 rated it liked it
A lot of detail for a beginner.
Feb 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Buddhist comparative doctrine -- who wouldn't like this?
It was interesting but very much like reading a text book.
Erin Rapacki
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Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso (born Lhamo Döndrub), the 14th Dalai Lama, is a practicing member of the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism and is influential as a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, the world's most famous Buddhist monk, and the leader of the exiled Tibetan government in India.

Tenzin Gyatso was the fifth of sixteen children born to a farming family. He was proclaimed the