The Story of Buddhism: A Concise Guide to Its History & Teachings (Paperback)

The Story of Buddhism: A Concise Guide to Its History & Teachings By Donald S. Lopez Cover Image
Ships from Warehouse


  • How and when did the many schools of Buddhism emerge?
  • How does the historical figure of Siddartha Guatama relate to the many teachings that are presented in his name?
  • Did Buddhism modify the cultures to which it was introduced, or did they modify Buddhism?

Leading Buddhist scholar Donald S. Lopez Jr. explores the origins of this 2,500-year-old religion and traces its major developments up to the present, focusing not only on the essential elemenmts common to all schools of Buddhism but also revealing the differences among the major traditions. Beginning with the creation and structure of the Buddhist universe, Lopez explores the life of the Buddha, the core Buddhist tenets, and the development of the monastic life and lay practices. Combining brilliant scholarship with fascinating stories -- contemporary and historical, sometimes miraculous, sometimes humorous -- this rich and absorbing volume presents a fresh and expert history of Buddhism and Buddhist life.

About the Author

Donald S. Lopez Jr. is the Carl W. Belser Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies at the University of Michigan. He is the author and editor of many books on Buddhism, including Buddhism in Practice and Prisoners of Shangri-La: Tibetan Buddhism and the West, and key religious texts by His Holiness the Dalai Lama: The Joy of Living and Dying in Peace, The Way to Freedom, and Awakening the Mind, Lightening the Heart.

Praise For…

“At long last we have here an introductory volume on Buddhism that goes beyond the usual cliches.” — Bernard Faure, Professor of Religious Studies, Stanford University

“Heads my list of books to give to someone ready to be introduced to the Four Noble Truths.” — Phil Catalfo, Yoga Journal

“The clearest book we have on the history, variety, and meaning of what we now call Buddhism.” — Kenneth Woodward, Newsweek

“The Story of Buddhism is one of those rare books that gives fresh insights on repeated readings.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“A portrayal of Buddhism readily accessible and appealing...[a] good introduction to Buddhism.” — Choice

“Aims to make the tradition both accessible and compelling, as well as to demystify its practices, teachings, and schools.” — Tricycle

Product Details
ISBN: 9780060099275
ISBN-10: 0060099275
Publisher: HarperOne
Publication Date: August 11th, 2009
Pages: 288
Language: English