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World Religions: General Research Guide: Buddhism

The guide is designed for students in RELI 1301 and 1301H and for persons with general interest in the major faith traditions of the world.

General Information

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Buddhism originated in Northern India in the 6th or 5th Century BCE and is based on the spiritual vision of Gautama, a young prince who became the first "enlighted one" or Buddha.  There are two schools of Buddhism: Thereavada and Mahayana, which has several offshoots including Tibetan Buddism and Zen. Though predominantly practiced in Asia, Buddhism has worldwide adherents of its beliefs and practice.  Sacred text for Theravada is the Tipitaka or Pali Canon and for Mahayan include various sutras acknowledged to be teaching of the Buddha..

Trusted Websites

Reference Books

Reference books are an excellent source to begin learning about a topic.  Be sure to look at the end of an entry to see the books and articles the expert recommends for a topic.

Books and More at GPC

Find print books, videos, e-texts and more in GPC libraries by using GIL-Find.  Here is a tutorial on how to get started with your search.

Two suggested sample searches are linked below.

Books on Buddhism as a subject.  Be sure to look at the suggested topics at the top of the page to narrow and refine your search. For instance, if you want to know about meditation in Buddhism, select that limiter from the "more topics" list.

Books specifically about the life and thought of Guatama Buddha.

Electronic Books

GPC provides access to many ebooks.  These can be read from home.  Some require not only the Galileo password, but also your GPC login and password. Here is a selection of e-books found by searching Buddhism as a subject and limiting to electronic format.