The Search for the Buddha by Charles Allen
The Men Who Discovered India's Lost Religion

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 2 Critic Reviews



Buddhism is now 2,500 years old and has about 300 million followers worldwide and almost 3 million adherents in the United States. Yet, until the late eighteenth century when Sir William “Oriental” Jones broke the Brahmins’ prohibition on learning the sacred language of Sanskrit, the Buddha’s teachings were treasures unappreciated in the West. Uncovering clues about Buddhism’s origins from inscriptions on pillars and rocks, Jones pioneered an enthusiastic band whose search for the Indian subcontinent’s secret religion is chronicled in this book of high adventure and monumental historical detection. Acclaimed narrative historian Charles Allen brings to life extraordinary eighteenth- and nineteenth-century characters and travels to lost holy places across the Eastern world as he tells the story of how Westerners found the Buddha. Allen has recorded the Western birth of a religion whose influence in America has increased tenfold in the just the past forty years.

About Charles Allen

See more books from this Author
Allen was born in India, where six generations of his family served under the Raj.
Published March 1, 2003 by Carroll & Graf. 322 pages
Genres: History, Religion & Spirituality, Education & Reference, Travel. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Search for the Buddha

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Still, he writes, it was largely through their labors that Buddhism was introduced to the West—even though their version of Buddhism tended to be a very Protestant one: a rationalist rendition stripped of its corrupting “Mahayana accretions, rather as the early Christian teaching had been corrupt...

| Read Full Review of The Search for the Buddha: Th...

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

With the variety of resources on Buddhism so effortlessly available to us today, it's easy to forget that not so long ago, Buddhism was simply unknown in the West—and had also been all but forgotten in India itself.

| Read Full Review of The Search for the Buddha: Th...

Reader Rating for The Search for the Buddha

An aggregated and normalized score based on 13 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review