Buddhism in Europe

As a result of this practical approach to the spiritual path, Buddhism in Asia has seen the development of a great variety of traditions, which throughout the centuries have mingled with local cultures. Such a variety is also encountered in Europe, because most Buddhist organizations in Europe have spiritual teachers originating in the East. However, recently the number of teachers of western origin has begun to increase, and similarly many organizations have seen their "eastern appearance"evolve into an appearance of a more local brand, i.e. European or western, thus showing that in Europe Buddhism is very much a living tradition.

In present day Europe Buddhism is important not only because of its numbers (between 1 and 4 million) but also because of its impact on spiritual life, culture and the sciences. In a continent opening up to spiritual alternatives Buddhism is attractive to many because of its emphasis on personal effort and the availability of sound spiritual methods and able teachers. As a result, there is a vast interest in the practice of the various forms of Buddhist meditation, classical as well as modern.

At the same time, there continues to be a substantial interest in the academic aspect of Buddhism and Buddhist Studies. All in all, Buddhism in its many aspects undoubtedly has a lot to offer to present-day Europe. Buddhism in the world: Nowadays, Buddhism in its many forms is flourishing in many Asian countries and since the 20th century also in "the western world", i.e. in Europe, USA, Australia etc. The total number of Buddhists world-wide is estimated at 500 to 1000 Million.

This page was last updated on 27/12/2011