Samatha Trust

and Lance Cousins collection

About the library

The Samatha Trust Library is developing a wide collection of resources (books, audio and online) that will 

⦿   support the development of samatha meditation practice
⦿   support the development of wisdom through dhamma investigation
⦿   make this gift of resources for study and practice available to the wider Buddhist community

The new library, under the auspices of the Samatha Trust, has been established at the Manchester Centre for Buddhist Meditation in honour of Lance Cousins. Lance was central to the formation of the library at the Manchester Centre (then the Samatha Centre) in 1977. He helped set up a unique library which included not only hand-picked texts from different Buddhist traditions but also a wide range of texts from many other spiritual traditions. The collection has many older, and now out of print publications, as well as a range of booklets collected from various sources.

Some more about the library

Following Lance's death in March 2015, his family generously donated all the religious texts from his personal library at Dynham Place, Oxford, to the Samatha Trust to be housed at the Manchester Centre. One of Lance’s many achievements was the combination of very considerable skill in meditation practice and teaching alongside Buddhist scholarship of the highest quality. He had a particular interest in abhidhamma and a formidable understanding of it. Lance also had an eclectic interest in other spiritual traditions and was skilled in choosing particular texts that might enhance his pupils’ practice or understanding. As a result, his personal library has a uniquely rich and varied content including texts in Sinhala and Burmese and some rare publications.

Adding Lance’s personal collection to the existing Manchester library, will nearly double its size. Both the old and new collections will be electronically catalogued and there are plans to make the catalogues available on-line with links to other Buddhist libraries.

Special Features of the Library

Pali canon

Vinaya, Sutta and Abbhidhamma in Pali and translation

Abhidamma studies

Comprehensive range of scholarly and general publications

Commentaries & reference texts

A wide variety of general and specialist texts

Meditation practice

Samatha, vipassanā, rupa, arupa and lokuttara jhana practices

Esoteric Southern Buddhism

A wide range of source texts and scholarly works in various languages

Theravāda general

A very wide range of books, journals, papers and pamphlets

Mahāyāna Buddhism

A collection of general and scholarly works

Vajrayāna Buddhism

A collection of general and scholarly works

Western esoteric traditions

An eclectic range of texts and commentaries

Christian Mysticism

A variety of texts by and about Christian practice

Register your interest

We intend to to make the new library available
to interested scholars, monastics and others. The newly extended Manchester Centre can provide suitable accommodation if required. Funds are needed to enable the project to move forward. If you would like to give a donation to the Samatha Trust Library, in honour of Lance, please complete the attached donations form and return to the Samatha Trust Treasurer at the address shown on the accompanying letter. Any amount, small or large, will be very much appreciated and put to very good use.

To make any suggestions or ask questions, please email samatha-trust-library(at)

Download LibraryLetter and Donations Form

To register your interest, fill in the form below.