Recommended Books

Selected Buddhist Literature


General Introduction to Buddhism  


A wonderful book by Tibetan master and film producer Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche. It gives not only a good overview over Buddhist practice, but is also great fun to read. Highly recommended!

 • Thich Nath Hanh -  Old Path White Clouds: Walking in the Footsteps of the Buddha 

This book by noble peace price winner and famous Buddhist master Thich Nath Hanh tells the life-story of the Buddha through the eyes of his disciples. A must read for every Buddhist, this work helps to see the various Buddhist teachings in their temporal and cultural context.

 • Dalai Lama - The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living 

Everybody wants to be happy and can become happy? This interesting book contains a dialog on this subject and other related questions between psychiatrist Howard Cutler and the Dalai Lama.

 • Sogyal Rinpoche - The Tibetan Book Of Living And Dying 

A subject that concerns everyone sooner or later discussed from a Tibetan Buddhist perspective.

Introduction to Buddhist Meditation


 • Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche - Not for Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices

The latest book by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche on the preliminary practices (Tib. Ngondro) of Tibetan Buddhism.

 • Shamar Rinpoche - Boundless Awakening: The Heart of Buddhist Meditation 

An essential introduction to Buddhist meditation that is recommendable for both, beginners and advanced.

• Shantideva -  The Way of the Bodhisattva (Shambhala Classics) 

Laying out the entire Buddhist path, the Bodhicarya Avatara is certainly one of the most influential Indian Buddhist works. Centering around the two main qualities to be developed, compassion and wisdom, it explains how we can integrate and develop them in our daily life.

Mind Training (Lojong)


The following books all deal with the practice of mind training or Lojong. Mind training is a systematic Buddhist practice which guides a practitioner along the path. While the whole path is taught, it particularly focuses strongly on developing loving kindness, compassion and the awakening mind (bodhicitta). It is closely linked to the Indian Buddhist master Atisha's instructions on the gradual path with three types of beings.

Shamar Rinpoche - The Path to Awakening (LOJONG - Der buddhistische Weg zu Mitgefühl und Weisheit)

 • Jamgon Kongtrul - The Great Path of Awakening  (Lodjong Der große Weg des Erwachens: Grundlagentexte des Mahayana-Geistestrainings

 • Pema Chödron - Start Where You Are (Beginne, wo du bist: Eine Anleitung zum mitfühlenden Leben)

Buddhist Studies 

 • Peter Harvey - An Introduction to Buddhism: Teachings, History and Practices 

A comprehensive academic introduction and overview over the development of the Buddhist tradition in Asia and the West. A must read for everyone intending to engage in Buddhist studies.


Erich Frauwallner - The Philosophy of Buddhism (Die Philosophie des Buddhismus)

One of the most influential pioneer works (Frauwallner's Die Philosophie des Buddhismus) in the field of Buddhist studies has finally been translated into English. The work has also been updated to include latest scholarly positions on the various subjects addressed.


Tibetan Studies


 • Matthew Kapstein -  Tibetan Buddhism: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)  

As its title says: "a very short introduction" on the Tibetan Buddhist traditions by one of the leading scholars in the field.

 • Two further interesting books by the same author:


 • Heinrich Harrer - Seven Years in Tibet (Paladin Books)

One of the landmarks of travel writing and probably the most famous book on Tibet by the European adventurer Heinrich Harrer.

 • Peter Aufschnaiter -  Peter Aufschnaiter's Eight Years in Tibet 

Less know than Harrer's book, this book contains the description of Peter Aufschnaiter's travel to Tibet. It was actually him whom Heinrich Harrer had accompanied to Tibet, and Aufschnaiter stayed on for some more time after Harrer had left.

Tibetan Language 


 • Jonathan Samuely - Colloquial Tibetan: The Complete Course for Beginners (Colloquial Series)

A new comprehensive introduction to the Tibetan language by Routledge.

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