The Society has possessed a library since the earliest days; the first accessions records date from 1926.

The size of the Library is limited by the space presently available to about 4,000 volumes on the Ground Floor plus approximately 1,000 more elsewhere in the building. The core of the collection is material supporting the belief and practice of present-day Buddhists in the UK, although peripheral subjects are covered as well. Most of the books are available for loan to members resident in the U.K. Non-members may consult books during the hours when the Society is open to the public.

As part of the reorganization referred to above a computer database has been developed to replace the card catalogue. Thanks to the generosity of one of our members, this database is now available for searching online.

Opening Times

The library is open to members and non-members 2-6 p.m Monday to Friday and 2-5 p.m. on Saturday.


Postal Service - The library runs a Postal Service for members - for further details see the online catalogue page.

Book Renewal - Library books may be renewed by email - email the librarian.

Library Catalogue

How to use the search We are pleased to allow our members to search for titles online. Please use the form above to search books by category, title or author. To speed up your search please ensure that you specify all or part of either category, title or author as this will limit the search to what you are interested in. Should you...

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Library Rules

Books may be borrowed only by members of the Society resident in the UK. Certain books are not available for loan.

Two books may be borrowed at one time.

The normal time limit is one month, but a loan may be renewed provided the books are not wanted by another reader. Renewals may be requested by email to...

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Scriptures & Texts

Oral Tradition The Buddha's teaching was oral. He taught for 45 years, adapting the teaching to suit the group he was addressing, and there is duplication in the texts. The language he used is understood to be Magadhi. The Sangha memorized the teachings, and there were group recitations at festivals and special occasions. The teachings were rehearsed and authenticated at the First...

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Publications and Books for Sale

Selected Works of D.T. Suzuki brings together various important essays and teachings of D.T. Suzuki. Published by the University of California Press in association with the Buddhist Society Trust. An essential collection of inspiring insights, Teachings of the Buddha contains selections from the Pali canon and later Mahayana sutras, as...

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