The World of Tibetan Buddhism Review

The World of Tibetan Buddhism Review

the world of tibetan buddhismBook Title: The World of Tibetan Buddhism: An Overview of Its Philosophy and Practice
Author:
Dalai Lama
Co-Author(s): Translated, edited, and annotated by Geshe Thupten Jinpa, Foreword by actor Richard Gere
Publisher: Wisdom Publications
Year Published:
1995
Pages:
224
Paperback Price:
$12.96
Kindle Price:
$12.99

This is another brilliant book written by the His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.  He is the head of the Gelugpa Order of Tibetan Buddhism which was founded by Je Tsongkhapa and is considered to be the incarnation of the Bodhisattva of Infinite Compassion Avalokiteshvara.

He is an important figure to the Tibetan people and currently resides in Dharamsala, India where he currently lives in exile.  He also travels the world conducting Dharma talks and has been visiting pilgrimage sites of other faiths in an effort to promote interfaith dialogue.

Book Summary

This book is essentially an overview of the various aspects and beliefs that are held by those following the Tibetan Buddhist path.  As he says in the book, “I think an overview of Tibetan Buddhism for the purpose of providing a comprehensive framework of the path may prove helpful in deepening our understanding and practice.”

This book covers an overview of Mahayana Buddhism, the importance of altruism in your spiritual practice, and the Tantric practices of the Vajrayana Buddhism of Tibet.

the world of tibetan buddhism

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama

Part 1 General Buddhism
Chapter 1:
The Divisions of Vehicles
Chapter 2: The First Turning of the Wheel of Dharma
Chapter 3: The Second Turning – The Doctrine of Emptiness
Chapter 4: The Third Turning – Buddha-nature
Chapter 5: Different Explanations of Selflessness
Chapter 6: The Four Seals of Buddhism
Chapter 7: The Mahayana Path of Emptiness and Compassion
Chapter 8: Questions and Answers

Part II An Altruistic Outlook and Way of Life
Chapter 9: The Benefits of Altruism
Chapter 10: Recognizing the Enemy Within
Chapter 11: Overcoming Anger and Hatred
Chapter 12: Oneself and Others: Exchanging Places
Chapter 13: Questions and Answers

Part III The Vajrayana Buddhism of Tibet
Chapter 14: The Distinctive Features of Tantra
Chapter 15: The Divisions of Tantra
Chapter 16: Initiation: Empowerment
Chapter 17: Pledges and Vows
Chapter 18: Tantric Practice: The First Three Classes of Tantra
Chapter 19: Advanced Tantric Practice: Highest Yoga Tantra
Chapter 20: Questions and Answers

My Critique

This is one of the most concise and comprehensive books written by the Dalai Lama.  I really enjoyed reading it and found it to be a great overview of Tibetan Buddhism.  The Dalai Lama really knows how to communicate his points simply and with sound logic.

I would definitely recommend this book if you’re interested in learning more about the philosophy of Tibetan Buddhism.  Also, if you need a good book for research purposes then I’d definitely recommend this one.

This book is perfect for both beginner and advanced practitioners of Buddhism who wish to deepen their practice.

Conclusion

I found this book to be both interesting and profound and it has definitely deepened my understanding of the Dharma (Buddhist teachings).  If you’re looking for a book that gives a good overview of Tibetan Buddhism, then this is definitely the one you’ve been looking for.

Buy your own copy of “The World of Tibetan Buddhism” from Amazon today!


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6 Responses to The World of Tibetan Buddhism Review

  1. JP says:

    Awesome review. I’m a fan of aspects of the eastern religion and how they have an edge on things like mindfulness meditation. This is a practice that’s helped a lot in terms of detaching thoughts and negativity from ourselves. Keep up the good work and I’d like to read more reviews and posts from you .

  2. Derek Marshall says:

    Hi there,

    Nice review. I am particularly interested in how the different aspects of Buddhism and Buddhist practices as there does seem to be a very big difference between what is practiced here in Thailand, (Theravada) and Japan (Mahayana).

    Are the differences explained in this book? or is there one that you can recommend?

    Thank you kindly in advance

    • Ian H says:

      Hi Derek,
      On the surface, there isn’t that much difference between Theravada and Mahayana in terms of the core teachings of the Four Noble Truths. The difference is in the emphasis. In Theravada, they only accept the Pali canon and reject the Mahayana sutras. Theravada is also called the ‘Individual Vehicle’ since it is focused on getting enlightenment for oneself. In contrast, Mahayana is the ‘Universal Vehicle’ and the path of the Bodhisattva in which you attain enlightenment for the sake of others.

  3. Wire Wrapped Jewelry says:

    What a beautiful website.

    I really do not know anything at all about the Buddhist religion, however, I do love the Tibetan Dharma handmade jewelry, such as the Mala bracelets and some of the beaded pendants. I am becoming more and more interested in both the religion and the jewelry.

    I make jewelry myself, and I am self taught. I usually make just what I like. I would love to learn the secret of making the fabulous pendants I’ve seen on the internet made by Tibetan women.

    Maybe you could include a link for some of the Tibetan jewelry websites.

    • Ian H says:

      Thank you! I too am into the Tibetan jewelry and I might write an article about the traditional practices in the near future.

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