Essential Tibetan Buddhism

Essential Tibetan Buddhism WINNER OF THE TRICYCLE PRIZE FOR EXCELLENCEExpertly and lucidly surveying the basic varieties and teachings of Tibetan Buddhism renowned scholar Robert Thurman makes this authentic spiritual traditio

  • Title: Essential Tibetan Buddhism
  • Author: Robert A.F. Thurman
  • ISBN: 9780062510518
  • Page: 414
  • Format: Paperback
  • WINNER OF THE TRICYCLE PRIZE FOR EXCELLENCEExpertly and lucidly surveying the basic varieties and teachings of Tibetan Buddhism, renowned scholar Robert Thurman makes this authentic spiritual tradition available to contemporary Western audiences

    One thought on “Essential Tibetan Buddhism”

    1. Robert Thurman is the preeminent American authority on Tibetan Buddhism. He was the first westerner to ever be officially ordained as a Tibetan Buddhist monk and looks to the Dalai Lama as his personal mentor. (He's also Uma Thurman's dad!)I've seen a couple of lecture videos by him and I just love his enthusiasm and passion for the subject of Tibetan Buddhism. He's also super-funny in a very geeky sort of way.I didn't read through this entire book. It's a collection of ancient Tibetan writings [...]

    2. I think I will have to agree with another review that I read on this book: the book is way too dense at some points. A little past the halfway point, there's just this huge block of texts that you have to muddle through and at the end, you ask yourself "What did I learn?" and you can't really pinpoint an answer (which would be okay if it allowed you to experience Tibetan Buddhist culture or something of that sort, but I feel as if that could have been expressed with texts that are less dense). T [...]

    3. This was a really dense read, esp. since I had zero experience with Buddhism prior to reading this book. Probably not the best place to start for someone curious about Buddhism. Otherwise, interesting stuff.

    4. Interesting but rather heavy going in places. Sadly No index but contains a wealth of information about this subject.

    5. As a professor of Indo-Tibetan studies, and chair of the religion department at Columbia University, Robert Thurman has had a great career devoted to the task of making the Buddhist teaching and scriptures, particularly those of the Tibetan people, intelligible to students and interested laypersons.`Tibetan Buddhism increasingly rivals Zen in its popularity as a path of Buddhist wisdom and practice.'Thurman has written and translated many texts in this area, particularly the well-received `Tibet [...]

    6. This book took a long time to get through. Several times I had to stop and take a brief hiatus from reading it because the text was a bit dense and required some time to consider before moving on. One reason for this is the author's call to leave his explanations of the selected writings for the Notes section at the very end. While I understand wanting the selected writings to speak for themselves, for someone who is looking to understand Tibetan Buddhism (like the majority of readers who find t [...]

    7. Thurman's 50-page condensed introductory history of Buddhism in Tibet is what I bought this for, in retrospect. That man can write a condensed introductory history of Buddhism in Tibet. The bulk of the remainder is texts (poems, narrative, commentary) from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, which as a note to myself comes off rather religiously, when you look at it. Noteworthy: Tse Chokling Yongdzin Yeshe Gyaltsen's telling of the story of the Buddha's life and Enlightenment is ornate, gothically b [...]

    8. Took me forever to read but this book is no lightweight. The notes at the end of the book are invaluable. The content is at times very difficult reading but this book is essential for anyone from the west who wants to be even a semi-serious student of Tibetan Buddhism. When not just presenting translations of classic text, Robert Thurman is extremely accessible, his understanding of Tibetan Buddhism opens the doors to understanding.

    9. The introduction and first few chapters were highly informative, they provided the history of Buddhism in Tibet, and the story of the Buddha himself. the second half of the book is primarily prose depicting the various deities, and there's little context provided for it. While beautiful, I didn't get too much out of this part. The notes section in the back does provide some context, but not enough to understand what it's about.

    10. A good overview of the fundamental beliefs of the Mahayana traditions emanating from Tibet. Whilst setting out the 'mythology' of Buddhism which is not unlike that of the Christian tradition, not for a moment is there any expectation that the reader will be expected to accept the mythology in a literal sense. Rather these stories are presented in a rich tapestry of symbolism. So far I am enjoying this work immensely.

    11. Informative, but tough going. A lot of the texts are presented without any explanation, which can be difficult for someone not oriented in the Tibetan cosmology to understand (and often Thurman leaves off further explication for the sake of brevity). Still, there is a lot to recommend this, such as the excerpts from Milarepa, Shantideva and the 14th Dalai Lama.

    12. The beginning is great in that it explains the history of how Tibetan Buddhism came about, but the rest of the book is not what I was expecting at all. It's incredibly dense, and definitely not for beginners. Given the title, I thought it would be more of an intro-style book, but it is not. I think it will be well worth coming back to later, when I have more knowledge/understanding.

    13. Yet another fabulous book that I will never truly be "done" with. A lot of history in a short amount of space, my only complaint was that the typeface was so tiny. I loved reading about the history of the traditions I practice, and I strongly recommend this book to any Buddhist to help them understand the difference between Tibetan Buddhism and other traditions.

    14. This is a source book for all things Tibetan Buddhism. . . very useful. --From A Reader's Journal, by d r melbie.

    15. My husband and I watched the video version of his lectures about Tibet, and I am re-reading his terrific book again. amazon/Robert-F-Thurma

    16. A good introduction to Tibetan Buddhism, it did grow tiring in a few points. It was a useful reference while traveling in Bhutan.

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