LING, Trevor Oswald. London 17.2.1920 — Long Eaton, Derbyshire 24.3.1995. British Scholar of Comparative Religion and Buddhism. Son of Albert Oswald Ling and Emma Meachen. Started to study for Baptist ministry, but in war service went to India. In Calcutta he met Hindu thought and started to learn Sanskrit and Pāli. Back in England 1946, he studied theology and modern history at Oxford and in the 1950s taught Theology at Nottingham University. Back in London in Baptist offices he continued his studies. Ph.D. 1959/60 S.O.A.S. or King’s College, London. For a while Pastor at Judson Church (Baptist), University of Rangoon (1960-62), but here the collaboration with American Baptists estranged him from Baptism. Ordained Anglican priest 1963, but later resigned his orders. In 1963-72 taught Theology at University of Leeds. From 1972 Professor of Comparative Religion at Manchester, until early retirement in 1982. Visiting Professor in Santiniketan (1978-79) and many years in Singapore (1984-92). Last years in Brighton. He was a specialist of Theravada Buddhism. Married 1949 Mary Evelyn Inkster (d. 1973), three daughters, and 1977 Jeanne Openshaw.
Publications: Diss. The demonology of the Pāli canon examined in relation to the demonology of the New Testament. Manuscript 1959/60, much revised as Buddhism and the Mythology of Evil (Mara). 179 p. L. 1962.
– Prophetic religion. 12+179 p. L. 1966.
– Buddha, Marx and God: some aspects of religion in the modern world. 12+228 p. L. 1966, 2nd ed. L. 1979.
– “Sinhalese buddhism in recent anthropological writing: Some implications”, Religion 1, 1971, 49-59; other articles in Religion.
– Karl Marx and Religion in Europe and India. 8+168 p. L. 1980.
– A History of Religion — East and West. 29+464 p. 1968.
– A Dictionary of Buddhism: Indian and South-East Asian. 202 p. Calcutta 1972.
– The Buddha: Buddhist Civilisation in India and Ceylon. 287 p. 1973.
– Religious Change in the Secular State. 2+107 p. Calcutta 1978.
– Buddhism, Imperialism and War: Burma and Thailand in Modern History. 17+163 p. L. 1979; Buddhist trends in Southeast Asia. 9+188 p. Singapore 1993.
– Buddhist revival in India: aspects of the sociology of Buddhism. 7+151 p. L. 1980.
Sources: Panchana Saha briefly in MLBD Newsletter July 1995, 9; Cynthia Chou in http://iias.asia/iiasn/iiasn5/ling.html; H. Willmer, Independent 15.6.1995 (independent.co.uk); geni.com.