A CONCISE HISTORY OF BUDDHISM ANDREW SKILTON PDF

I found this short book to be quite useful in disentangling the various threads of contemporary Buddhism, even though the history stops short of the 20th century. For example, I've always been A Concise History of Buddhism. Andrew Skilton. Buddhism is a widely diverse religion, with many traditions handed down through the centuries.

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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem?

Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Buddhism is a widely diverse religion, with many traditions handed down through the centuries. The newcomer seeking to understand the sometimes contradictory spiritual texts can find it daunting. A Buddhist and professor at Oxford University now unravels these varied religious threads and creates a wonderfully clear and compact look at Buddhist history.

From the ancient In Buddhism is a widely diverse religion, with many traditions handed down through the centuries. From the ancient Indian context to Buddhism in countries beyond, from the Mahayana sutras to Tantra, it presents an account of the religion's development up through the 19 the century, its doctrines and its schools.

But the study also covers the context in which Buddhism developed, the external events that had an impact on the religion. Using the most recent scholarship available, it reflects on the Buddha and his teachings, the paths to awakening, the development in the Sangha, the Tripitaka and the Abhidharma, the end of Buddhism in India, and the practice of Buddhism all throughout Asia.

A truly enlightening guide. Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. Published August 15th by Barnes Noble first published August 1st More Details Original Title. Other Editions 6. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

To ask other readers questions about A Concise History of Buddhism , please sign up. Be the first to ask a question about A Concise History of Buddhism. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of A Concise History of Buddhism. Let me start by saying that this book is definitely not intended for an audience cursorily interested in the history of Buddhism.

Though the book may be concise, it is clear that it could have been made even more so. Skilton, to his credit, tries to treat the book as a rigorous explanation of the diverse Buddhist schools of thought and how they came to be formed. Needless to say, t Let me start by saying that this book is definitely not intended for an audience cursorily interested in the history of Buddhism.

Needless to say, this causes the reader unfamiliar with Sanskrit to be unable to keep track of the diverse schools, or terms which differentiate them. Finally, though the interested reader can certainly distil the overall progression of Buddhism from this book, it is clear that a reduction in the discussion of hair-splitting theological terms in favor of discussions of the impact of the evolving societal aspect would have made this book a lot better and much more inviting.

Mar 06, Sara Gray rated it liked it. While my mind smeared over the many Sanskrit names of various sutras and authors, I did learn a few things from this quick history of Buddhism.

Most encouraging to me was learning that the various different orders of Buddhists split not due to any argument over doctrine, but more over the lifestyle and rules of monks and nuns, which I think proves the practical nature of most of the Buddha's teachings. On the other hand, a lot of what I had assumed was directly from the Buddha's mouth were actua While my mind smeared over the many Sanskrit names of various sutras and authors, I did learn a few things from this quick history of Buddhism.

On the other hand, a lot of what I had assumed was directly from the Buddha's mouth were actually teachings and interpretations written hundreds and thousands of years later by other scholars, so really, the whole of dharma is a vast act of collaboration and constant testing by thousands of years' worth of meditators and Buddhists, which works for me, too.

Sep 28, Abhay Nanda rated it really liked it. The book is a well researched work. Since the author has tried to wrap the history of Buddhism in just about pages the book contains a lot of information some of which is not discussed in detail and hence it could get boring. But for those who seek answer to "how a religion that originated in India travelled to different parts of the world and flourished successfully in other countries but in India", this should be a must read.

Apr 20, Rob Walter rated it it was ok Shelves: zen. It's really hard to find books about the history of Buddhism and this might be because it's extremely hard to write about. There are lots of Sanskrit and Pali terms which don't have a direct translation in English and so need to be kept in their original form; there are lots of schools and philosophies that really don't go anywhere; and there is a lot of historical happenstance that doesn't really say much about the nature of Buddhism then or now.

I also think Skilton wanted to avoid the mistake It's really hard to find books about the history of Buddhism and this might be because it's extremely hard to write about.

In this he succeeded, but it was at the cost of cohesion. I think it would have been helpful to have a couple of central theses - eg. Even if that approach wasn't taken, something was required to tie the whole thing together. There are also problems with Skilton's writing, which at the sentence level is usually fairly clear, but which at the paragraph, chapter and book levels leaves a bit to be desired. The most obvious example is that on page , in the chapter on Buddhism in Sri Lanka, the book says "The form of Buddhism that Mahinda brought was apparently This is an awfully long time to expect a reader to keep a peripheral actor in their head, but such missteps are not uncommon.

The book asks too much even of a serious reader. Having said all that, Skilton deserves praise for tackling a subject few others have and he certainly helped elucidate the historical origins of Zen, which is the Buddhist faith that most interests me. This book is a tough read, but would make an excellent reference either for writing an essay or to have around when you need help remembering the details of some long-distant split.

Oct 02, Tony Gualtieri rated it it was amazing. I found this short book to be quite useful in disentangling the various threads of contemporary Buddhism, even though the history stops short of the 20th century. For example, I've always been troubled by the division between the so-called "lesser" and "greater" vehicles Hinayana and Mahayana. Why would someone claim to follow something lesser? What is made clear here is that, in the most common usage, these terms arise in the Mahayana tradition and a follower of the Hinayana would be more lik I found this short book to be quite useful in disentangling the various threads of contemporary Buddhism, even though the history stops short of the 20th century.

What is made clear here is that, in the most common usage, these terms arise in the Mahayana tradition and a follower of the Hinayana would be more likely to identify as a follower of any number of schools founded before the Perfection of Wisdom sutras an interesting exception is in Nepal, where the two vehicles are considered stages on the path to enlightenment.

Along with a thorough examination of Buddhism's development in India, the book does a nice job summarizing the characteristics of Buddhism outside of India and why the religion based in South-East Asia has a different flavor than that of Tibet, China, or Japan. My one complaint is that the text could use a glossary, as it tends to be liberally sprinkled with arcane terms that are only defined on their first appearance.

After reading about 2 dozen books from various traditions of Buddhism, this was just the book I needed to tie it all together. Feb 22, Volodymyr rated it really liked it Shelves: non-fiction , read More history of Buddhism as an evolution of concepts explained in a good dense form, which makes it a nice introduction book , and not as calendar events, but it would be better to see more historical records.

Apr 18, Andrea rated it really liked it. This is a very dense history of Buddhism. While it contains a LOT of information it is very well organized. Please note that the author addresses the history of Buddhism in India. Leandro MP rated it it was ok Mar 09, Jo Bass rated it really liked it Jan 08, Shannon Stewart rated it really liked it Jul 15, Greg Schmidt rated it really liked it Apr 13, Samuel rated it really liked it Jul 01, Anthony Murawski rated it it was amazing Jun 16, Ram Tackett rated it did not like it May 21, Mauricio Santoro rated it liked it May 25, Sini rated it liked it Nov 03, Dilan rated it it was amazing Jun 02, Andrew Peters rated it it was amazing Aug 19, Ymfoo1 rated it really liked it Apr 03, Spool rated it liked it Oct 25, Brad rated it liked it Jan 19, Ilse Thompson rated it it was amazing Jul 04, Peter Attila rated it it was ok May 22, Todd rated it liked it Feb 21, Mary B.

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A Concise History of Buddhism

I found this short book to be quite useful in disentangling the various threads of contemporary Buddhism, even though the history stops short of the 20th century. For example, I've always been A Concise History of Buddhism. Andrew Skilton.

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