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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Buddhist Studies: Finding Books

A guide for those beginning Buddhist Studies

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Standing Buddhist Monk (possibly Ananda) in an Attitude of Worship

"Standing Buddhist Monk (possibly Ananda) in an Attitude of Worship , 1943.53.66,” Harvard Art Museums collections online, Oct 07, 2021,

Finding Books

Library Subject Headings 

The subject heading Buddhism links to thousands of results. Refine your search with more focused subjects. Here is a sample of subjects relating to Buddhism or Buddhist (note you may also want to refine by language and medium) 

Note! Try searching buddhis* (to get results for both Buddhism and Buddhist)

1. Geographical Regions (Buddhism--India, Buddhism--China, Buddhism--Japan, Buddhism--Tibet

2. Aspects of Buddhism (Buddhism--Doctrines, Buddhism--History, Buddhism--Philosophy, Buddhism and Science)

3. Buddhism and Culture

4. Buddhist and Art 

5. Gautama Buddha

6. Pure Land Buddhism 

7. Women in Buddhism 

8. Mahayana Buddhism 

9. Theravada Buddhism 

10. Bstan-ʾdzin-rgya-mtsho, Dalai Lama XIV 1935- (the current Dalai Lama) 

Browse the Shelves

Browse the Shelves

Books on Buddhism can be found in both the History, Philosophy, and Newspaper Library as well as the Main Stacks. These collections are contain both Library of Congress and Dewey Decimal Call Numbers.   

Library of Congress*

B162 Buddhist Philosophy 


Periodicals, societies, congresses. essays, and reference works
BQ221-829 History (antiquities, general histories, histories by country, etc.)
BQ840-999 Biography (BQ860-939: Gautama Buddha)
BQ100-3340 Buddhist scriptures and literature
BQ4000-4060 General works
BQ4061-4565 Doctrines
BQ4570-4610 Special topics, relations to special subjects and other religions
BQ4620-4905 Pantheon
BQ4911-6495 Practices, ceremonies, hymns, liturgical objects, temples, ministry, and spiritual life
BQ6001-6388 Monasticism
BQ6400-6495 Pilgrimages
BQ7000-9519 Schools and traditions (BQ7530-7950: Tibetan; BQ9250-9519: Zen)


*pre-1975 imprints are likely to be classed in the range BL1400-BL1485

Dewey Decimal