Very informative, easy to follow
Jeffrey Leeper | 02/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was essential to learing the real thoughts regarding buddism. Books I had read in the past were difficult to comprehend the actual meaning of the teachings of the buddah. Thurman is a great teacher and makes it easy and enjoyable to learn about this way of life. Also makes reading other books on the subject much easier."
Thurman presents lectures on the "Three Jewels"
Michael Schelb | Boca Raton, FL United States | 10/11/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Robert Thurman, the renowned professor of Indo-Tibetan studies from Columbia presents popular lectures on the basic concepts of "The Three Jewels" of Buddhism - The Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha. Thurman's style of teaching is light, sometimes humorous and entertaining enough to capture interest in the before mentioned topics. The video quality and sound are adequate - the lectures were recorded at Tibet House, New York, and the set of tapes provides a good introduction to Buddhist thought - great for the inquiring newcomer and a nice refresher for those who have studied this philosophy."
A good explanation
Jeffrey Leeper | Seattle, WA USA | 03/15/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This series consists of three videotapes that cover three aspects of Buddhism: the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha. Each tape is a lecture given by Robert A. F. Thurman at the Tibet House in New York. Excepting the occasional shot of the audience, each video is 70 minutes of his lecturing.This is not necessarily a bad thing. Thurman is an entertaining speaker and does a great job in explaining some of the mystical aspects and philosophy. He is very good at relating to the audience. After viewing them, I do feel that I have a better grasp of main tenets.This does not appear to be scripted. For instance, in tape two, he mentions that he will discuss the Four Noble Truths, the three wheels, and the three vehicles. He goes in depth on the truths and the first two wheels, but then seems to realize that he is running out of time so rushes through the last four. There is still good information, but I wished that these last ideas had the same kind of detailed explanation.I would recommend this to anyone wanting to understand more about Buddhism."
Excellent overview from someone who doesn't pretend to be "e
Detour | 02/18/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Thurman presents a rambling and scholarly and dense overview of some of the key precepts of Buddhism, and does so in such a way that he essentially deflates America's "delusions" about Buddhism and helps the viewer come to a closer understanding of what Buddhism really is.
Although others reviewers seem upset that Thurman didn't pretend to be anything other than who he is, I found this made his discussion that much more insightful. He IS a scholar and a university professor --- so why should he pretend to be anything else?
Yes, he was once a Buddhist monk --- but he didn't continue on that path. He's a Western scholar and a university professor, and denies that he's enlightened. I appreciate such honesty.
His refusal to show up in robes and sit cross legged on the floor looking "enlightened" also underscores the vast gulf between American interpretations of Buddhism and Buddhist interpretations --- which might be the most important aspect of this DVD.
This is a valuable work for anyone trying to wrap their minds around Tibetan Buddhism. Yes, it is basic and anything but trendy --- there are no bells, buzzers and whistles, and Thurman is about as far from a movie star sitting around looking enlightened as you can get --- but for someone interested in the nuts and bolts, it gets the job done.
I would recommend it to anyone seriously interested in Buddhism."