Himalayan Buddhism

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Himalayan Buddhism is a term used to collectively refer to the Buddhist schools of Tibet, Bhutan, and regions of Nepal, and those practiced in the Indian Himalayan regions of Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Darjeeling, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.

There are four main, and several smaller, sects of Buddhism which were centred in Tibet but spread to the surrounding Himalayan regions:

The Newar Buddhism of Nepal, which was centred in the Kathmandu valley, is older than Tibetan Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism drew many teachings, particularly Vajarayana teachings, from Newar Buddhism as well as teachings from Indian Buddhism

All these Buddhist traditions are closely related historically and all include practices of both the Mahayana and Vajrayana traditions of Buddhism. The Buddhism of Mongolia is sometimes considered part of the same cultural milieu, although Mongolia is not in the Himalayan region.



  • Ehrhard, Franz-Karl, "Buddhism, Schools of: Himalayan Buddhism", Encyclopedia of Religion (2nd ed.), Macmillan Reference, ISBN 0-02-865733-0