Buddhistic Glossary and Index



Aggregates see skandhas, {WikipediA}, L5:IV, L5:TB5:79,
W<The skandhas (Sanskrit: Pali: Khandha; literally: "heap" or "bundle") are the five aggregates through which the functioning and experience of an individual is created according to Buddhist phenomenology>W

W<Ahimsa is a religious concept which advocates non-violence and a respect for all life. Ahimsa is Sanskrit for avoid- ance of himsa, or injury. It is interpreted most often as meaning peace and reverence toward all sentient beings.>W 

From Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 4, 2004]. 

anatman (Pali: anatta) L5:IIID,
W<The Buddhist doctrine of Anatta (Pali) or Anatman (Sanskrit) specifies the absence of a supposedly permanent and unchanging self or soul (atman). What is normally thought of as the "self" is in fact an agglomeration of constantly changing physical and mental constituents ("skandhas") which give rise to unhappiness if clung to as though this temporary assemblage formed some kind of immutable and enduring Soul ("atman").>W  

no {permanent} self; i.e. a perishing self, a mode of G-D. 

{Perishing is a process (a verb) of growth and decay.}

anitya (Pali: anicca) L5:IIID
W<Impermanence is one of the essential doctrines or the three marks of Buddhism. According to it, everything is constantly in flux. This changing flux excludes nothing including planets, stars and even gods.>W  

S<The doctrine of impermanence; along with anatman (
no {permanent} self) and duhkha (suffering), one of the three characteristics of existence.>S:357  

arhat (arahant)
W<An arhat is a highly realized Buddhist practitoner, one who has completely destroyed greed, hatred and delusion. The word comes from Sanskrit arhati, Pali arahati, "he/she is worthy".>W  

1. a worthy, one, someone who has attained nirvana, has cut ties with samsara, and will never     be reborn. 

2. Enlightenment and wisdom {understanding}.

1. a person who practices self-denial and self-mortification for religious reasons.

2. a person who leads an austerely simple, nonmaterialist life.
3. (in the early Christian church) a monk; hermit.
adj. Also, <as-cet'i-cal>
4. pertaining to asceticism.
5. rigorously abstinent; austere.
6. very strict or severe in religious exercises or self-mortification.  

[1640-50; < Gk asketikós = asket (és) person practiced in an art (aske-, var. s. of askeîn to practice, train + -tes agent suffix) + -ikos - IC] 

ascetic n.
1. Most of the early saints were extreme ascetics: self-denier, abstainer, self-mortifier; hermit, recluse, solitary,     eremite, anchorite, celibate, cenobite; religious, monk, nun, flagellant; yogi, fakir, dervish.
2. Trappist monks lead an ascetic existence: austere, self-denying, abstemious, strict, stern, Spartan, rigorous,     self-mortifying.
1 hedonist, sensualist, voluptuary, sybarite, bon vivant.
2 self-indulgent, indulgent, pampered, luxurious, comfortable; abandoned, dissolute, voluptuous, sensuous,    sensual, sybaritic.

W<The term atman (or atma) is a fundamental concept to both the Hindu and Buddhist traditions, often roughly translated as self, soul, or ego.>W  

1. the individual self, known after enlightenment to be identical with Brahman.
2. (cap.) the world Soul, from which all individual souls derive and to which they return.
3. one of the most basic concepts in Hindu philosophy, describing that eternal core of the    personality that survives after death and that transmigrates to a new life or is released from   the bonds of ...

[1775-85; < Skt atman breath, self]

bhakti: {WikipediA},
W<Bhakti is a Tamil or Sanskrit term from Hinduism that means intense devotion expressed by action (service).
A person who practices bhakti is called bhakta. The concept of devotion is more or less the same in all religions.>W  

devotion to G-D.

Bhagavad Gita:
W<Bhagavad Gita is part of the epic poem Mahabharata, located in the Bhisma-Parva chapters 23–40. A core sacred text of Hindu (Vedic) religion and philosophy, the Bhagavad Gita, often referred to as the Gita, is a summation of the Vedic, Yogic, Vedantic and Tantric philosophies.>W

bhiikshus and bhikshunis: monks - renunciants (sannyasls).

W<In Buddhist thought, a bodhisattva is a being who, while not yet fully enlightened, is actively striving toward that goal. Conventionally, the term is applied to hypothetical beings with a high degree of enlightenment and power. Bodhisattva literally means a "wisdom ("bodhi") being ("sattva") in Sanskrit.>W  

"future Buddha" "Buddha-to-be (literally "awakening being"). In Buddhism, an individual who attains awakening (bodhi) but opts to defer nirvana (see below) in order to assist others in their spiritual quests, thus epitomizing the ideal of the Buddhist path according to the Mahayana tradition. 

S<bodhisattva (Pali: bodhisatta) Anyone who has taken a vow to become a Buddha, who will attain that goal, and who, in the meantime, compassionately engages in assisting others; more specifically, the Buddha Gautama before his enlightenment.>S:357 

"bodhisattva" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004]. 

Bodhicitta: 724,
W<In Buddhist thought, bodhicitta is the motivation of a bodhisattva. Etymologically, this is the combination of the words
Bodhi or enlightenment, and Citta - mind, and is sometime translated as mind of enlightenment. Bodhicitta is invariably taught to be selfless determination, as the purpose of enlightenment is not for ones-self, but for the benefit of all beings.>W  

The bodhisattva path is the "mind of awakening," or bodhicitta. 

The most important single concept to express the bodhisattva ideal is the concept of the  bodhicitta, a concept that I would translate as the "mind of enlightenment," or you might say the "mind that seeks enlightenment."

Bodhi tree:  
W<The Bodhi tree was a large and very old specimen of the Sacred Fig, under which Siddhartha Gautama,
the spiritual teacher and founder of Buddhism later know as Gautama Buddha, arrived at Bodhi.>W  
S<The tree of enlightenment; the particular tree in Bodhgaya, northern India, under which the Buddha attained enlightenment; any tree of that same species.>S:357 

Brahman [originally 'prayer']
W,Brahmin came to refer to the highest of the four castes, the Brahmins, who by virtue of their purity and priesthood are held to have such powers.>W  

1. Also, <Brahmin.> a member of the highest, or priestly, class among the Hindus.
    Castes: Brahman, Kshatriya, Shudra, Vaisya.

     Kshatriya: a member of the Hindu royal and warrior class above the Vaisyas and below the Brahmans.

     Shudra: a Hindu of the lowest caste, that of the workers. 
    Vaisya: a member of the Hindu mercantile and professional class, above the Shudras and below the           Kshatriyas.
2. Also, <Brahma.> (in Hinduism) the supreme being, the primal source and ultimate goal of all     beings; atman. [The word brahma originally meant "prayer." Here it refers to the power or reality that lies      behind the prayer.]  S<Brahma. The creator god in Hindu-Buddhist mythology.>S:357

Buddhism: The Ism Book, Taoism.
W<Buddhism is a religion and philosophy based on the teachings of the Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, who lived between approximately 566 and 486 BCE. >W  


The World's Major Religions and Belief Systems: 

Chinese chan (Japanese zen), "meditation," from the Sanskrit dhyana. A school of Chinese Buddhism in which the pursuit of enlightenment centers on the practice of meditation.

1.  In India the word we translate as "philosophy" means simply "to see" {"to hear, " "to understand"}.
2.  The most common word for "philosophy" in the Indian tradition is simply "vision"
3.  The word is related etymologically to a form of meditation known as vipashyana     (discriminating vision, or insight).

dharma: [Buddha's teaching], {Spinoza's teaching}, {Britannica}, TB1181{5}, TB1181{6},
W<Dharma (sanskrit, roughly (natural) law or way) is the way of the higher Truths. Beings that live according to or in harmony with Dharma proceed quicker towards moksha, nirvana or personal liberation, a concept central in eastern religions.>W  

1. (in Hinduism and Buddhism). a. conformity to religious law, custom, duty, or to one's own     character. b. the essential nature of the universe or one's own character.

2. the doctrine or teaching of the Buddha.

[1790-1800; < Skt: custom, duty, akin to dharayati holds, maintains]

"dharma" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September. 23, 2004]. 

dharma  Sanskrit, "truth," "order." "righteousness," duty," "justice." The term is used in both Hinduism and Buddhism; as a proper noun ("the Dharma"), it refers to the "truth" about human existence discovered and taught by the Buddha.

S>Dharma (Pali: Dhamma) The Theravada Teaching of the Buddha, Truth, Law, Doctrine; a basic element of reality (in the latter sense, usually written dharma). The word has many meanings, but they mostly revolve around the notion of anything that is fundamentally true or real.>S:358 {For the Mahayana, dharmas are not real.}

1. pertaining to or of the nature of logical argumentation.
2. DIALECTAL. n. di-a-lec-tal (die uh lek'tl) adj. 1. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of a dialect.     [1825-35] Derived words —di a-lec'tal-ly, adv.
Usage. In linguistics DIALECTAL, not DIALECTICAL, is the term more commonly used to denote regional      or social language variation.
3. the art or practice of debate or conversation by which the truth of a theory or opinion is     arrived at logically.
4. logical argumentation.
Hege'lian dialec'tic n. 1. an interpretive method in which some assertible      proposition (thesis) is necessarily opposed by an equally assertible and apparently contradictory      proposition (antithesis), the contradiction being reconciled on a higher level of truth by a third proposition      (synthesis). [1855-60]
6. <dialectics> (often used with a sing. v.) the arguments or bases of dialectical materialism,
    including the elevation of matter over mind and a constantly changing reality with a material
7. the juxtaposition or interaction of conflicting ideas, forces, etc.

[1350-1400; ME (< AF) < L dialectica < Gk dialektiké (téchne) argumentative (art), fem. of dialektikós. See DIALECT, - IC]

discursive: .
1. passing aimlessly from one subject to another; digressive; rambling.
2. proceeding by reasoning or argument rather than intuition.

[1590-1600; < ML discursivus. See DISCOURSE, - IVE]
dis-course (n. dis'kôrs, -kohrs, dis kôrs', -kohrs'; v. dis kôrs', -kohrs') n., v. <-coursed, -cours-ing> n.
1. communication of thought by words; talk; conversation.
2. a formal discussion of a subject in speech or writing, as a treatise or sermon.
3. any unit of connected speech or writing longer than a sentence. v.i.
4. to communicate thoughts orally; talk; converse.
5. to treat of a subject formally in speech or writing. v.t.
6. Archaic. to utter or give forth (musical sounds).
[1325-75; ME discours < ML discursus (sp. by influence of ME cours course), LL: conversation, L: running to and fro = discur (rere) to run about (dis- DIS -1 + currere to run) + -sus for -tus suffix of v. action]
Derived words dis-cours'er, n.

W<Dukkha (Pali; Sanskrit: dukha) is a central concept in Buddhism, the word roughly corresponding to a number of terms in English including sorrow, suffering, affliction, pain, anxiety, dissatisfaction, discomfort, anguish, stress, misery, and aversion.>W  

{loss of peace of mind}
S<The first of the Four Noble Truths; suffering, unsatisfactoriness.>S:358

Emptiness: Suffering, illusion, L5:V:B, L5:Pessimistic, L12:I, L12:TB1:181, L12:II, L12:III,
                          Cash Value of Emptiness, Non-duality,
W<Sunyata, or "Emptiness," is a term for an aspect of the Buddhist metaphysical critique as well as Buddhist episte-
mology and phenomenology. Shunyata signifies that everything one encounters in life is empty
{devoid} of soul,
permanence, and self-nature. Everything is inter-related
{organic}, never self-sufficient or independent; nothing has
independent reality. Yet shunyata never connotes nihilism
{1. total rejection of established laws and institutions.
2. anarchy, terrorism, or other revolutionary activity. 3. a. the belief that all existence is senseless and that there is
no possibility of an objective basis for truth
}, which Buddhist doctrine considers to be a delusion, just as it considers
to be a delusion.>W

{Think of 'emptiness' as a mind empty of false subjective thoughts; but instead, filled with (true) subjective and objective thoughts—with understanding. See Britannica—pure consciousness. I dislike the word 'emptiness' because 'EMPTINESS of all thought' implies a robotno joy, no sorrow, no understanding. Perhaps it is a translation-into-English problem?} 

1. The absence of identity {permanence, perishableness} in things {, including the individual Self, because      things are constantly changing, aggregate}, a fundamental teaching of Mahayana Buddhism. 

See Scope of Lecture 12 and JBY comment. 
{Think of 'emptiness' as 'understanding' in order to better understand the teaching. Understanding that things   constantly change, helps understand momentary events and thus brings peace-of-mind.}

Enlightenment, TEI,
{To understand and obey the Law of Organisms is "Enlightenment"
and removes the taint of "selfishness".  Ayn Rand; E4:Dijn:251.}

From Spinozistic Glossary and Index—Organic: 

1. any system of religious doctrines concerning last or final matters, as death, judgment, or an     afterlife.
2. the branch of theology dealing with such matters.

[1835-45; < Gk éschato (s) last + - LOGY]

1. an appearance or manifestation, esp. of a deity.
2. (cap.) a Christian festival, observed on Jan. 6, commemorating the manifestation of Christ to     the gentiles in the persons of the Magi; Twelfth Day.
3. a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into reality or the essential meaning of something,     often initiated by some simple, commonplace occurrence.
4. a literary work or section of a work presenting such a moment of revelation and insight.

[1275-1325; ME < LL epiphania < LGk epipháneia, Gk: apparition = epiphane-, s. of epiphanés appearing, manifest, der. of epiphaínesthai to come into view, appear (epi- EPI- + phaínesthai to appear) + -ia - Y 3]

Four Noble TruthsL5:III:D, L5:TB1:79,  

In the traditional summary of the Buddha's first sermon, the Buddha's teaching
is summarized in Four Noble Truths.

Good and Bad  L3:III,
likewise perfect and imperfect}
"As for the terms good and bad/evil, they indicate no positive quality in things regarded
in themselves,
but are merely modes of thinking
{subjective}, or notions which we form from the comparison of things one with another. Thus one and the same thing can be at the same time good, bad, and indifferent. ...." {Good and bad are subjective terms; furthermore, in Spinozism there is no 'free-will and therefore no praise-no blame. Spinozism differs in the 'karma' hypothesis.} 

Nevertheless, though this be so, the terms {good/bad/evil; perfect/imperfectshould still be retained. For, inasmuch as we desire to form an idea of man as a type of human nature which we may hold in view {as a model}, it will be useful for us to retain the terms in question, in the sense I have indicated

1. pertaining to knowledge.
2. possessing knowledge, esp. esoteric knowledge of spiritual matters.
3. (cap.) pertaining to or characteristic of the Gnostics. n. 4. (cap.) a member of any of certain     heretical early Christian mystical sects that claimed that matter was evil and denied that     Christ had a natural corporeal existence.

[1555-65; < LL Gnostici (pl.) < Gk gnostikós (sing.) pertaining to knowledge = gnost (ós), v. adj. of gignóskein to KNOW + -ikos - IC]

1. the art or science of interpretation, esp. of the Scriptures.
2. the branch of theology that deals with the principles of Biblical exegesis.


Hinayana: Therevada, Strong88,
"Lesser Vehicle," a term used in Mahayana literature to describe (derogatorily) the teaching that preceded the Mahayana.

1. the common religion of India, based upon the religion of the original Aryan settlers as     expounded and evolved in the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Bhagavad-Gita, etc. 

The World's Major Religions and Belief Systems: 


Idolatry takes the infinite as finite—a gross error. 

Idolatry is not an 'I-thee' relation with a thing (pantheism), but an 'I-It' relation.
Idolatry and superstition are faulty hypotheses designed
to achieve peace of mind.
The fault is in making
the infinite finite.
Idolizing a part, ignoring the whole; idolizing money, a golden calf (Exo. 32:4), farmers who pollute, substance abuse, creating slums, rampant capitalism, any fixation to the exclusion of other things leads to chaos.

illusion, Emptiness, L12:III:F, L12:illusion.
Webster's Electronic Dictionary"—something that deceives
by producing a false or misleading impression of reality.  
Spinozism differs with Nagarjuna's use of the word 'illusion': {Perhaps it is a translation problem?}
Deceived? when the thing that is changing is a real memory? That memory was a link in the natural chain of events; things would not be what they became without that link. It is an illusion (imagination) only when the thing is a false subjective memory. 

{I define 'real' that which is a product of cause and effect.}

Jainism (jie'niz uhm) n.
1. a dualistic religion founded in the 6th century B. C. as a revolt against current Hinduism and     emphasizing asceticism and nonviolence toward all living creatures.

"Jainism" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 4, 2004]. 

karma  L3:III,
KarmaA Sanskrit word that means "action." Good actions bring a good rebirth, and bad actions bring a bad rebirth]
1. (in Hinduism and Buddhism) action seen as bringing upon oneself inevitable results, either in     this life or in a reincarnation.
2. (in Theosophy) the cosmic principle of rewards and punishments for the acts performed in a     previous incarnation.
3. the good or bad {
subjective terms} emanations felt to be generated by someone or something. 
{Since in Spinozism there is no free-will there is no praise/merit, no blame/demerit/sin (Mark Twain and Spinoza), it therefore differs in the "karma" belief; but that does not matter. Religion being an hypothesis designed to achieve peace-of-mind, it need not be rational or true; it needs only to bring peace-of-mind to the believer, see "A Little Story".
Karma's cash value is its pedagogy."

[1820-30; < Skt: nom., acc. sing. of karman act, deed]  

[karma] Sanskrit, "action."
The balance of merit and demerit accumulated by an individual, which determines the nature of one's next reincarnation.

S<karma. Literally, "action," especially ritual, moral action: any deed that will bring about certain corresponding effects in this or a future lifetime; also, the law or principal governing these cause-and-effect relationships.>S:358

karuna: compassion that serves the interests of other sentient beings {not out of altruism, but as a mother for her child}. 

1. the preaching of the gospel of Christ, esp. in the manner of the early church.

[1885-90; < Gk kérygma proclamation, preaching = keryk-, s. of keryssein to proclaim, der. of kêryx herald + -ma n. suffix of result]-

Krishna (krish'nuh) n. {Equivalent to Spinoza's G-DDeus}
1. an embodiment or personification (as of a principle, attitude, or view of life) of Vishnu.

"Krishna" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004]. 

limen (lie'muhn) n. pl. <li-mens, lim-i-na>(lim'uh nuh)
1. THRESHOLD (def. 4).
threshold Def 4. Also called <limen.> the point at which a stimulus is of sufficient intensity to begin to produce an effect: the threshold of consciousness; a low threshold of pain. [bef. 900; ME; OE threscold, threscwald, c. ON threskoldr; akin to THRESH in old sense " trample, tread "; -old, -wald unexplained]

[1890-95; < L]

log'ical pos'itivism n.
1. a philosophical movement that rejects all transcendental metaphysics, statements of fact     being held to be meaningful only if they have verifiable consequences in experience and in     statements of logic, mathematics, or philosophy, with such statements of fact deriving their     validity from the rules of language. Also called <log'ical empir'icism>.


Mahayana: CG1:5:21, L12:I, L12:IIC, TB1:12:181, TB1:12:181{6}, L12:III,
the "Great Vehicle," a reform movement that appeared in the Buddhist community in India around the beginning of the Common Era. Eventually the Mahayana dominated the Buddhism of Tibet, China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam.

"Mahayana" Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004].

a meditational device that is a representation of the Buddhist universe.

S<Literally, a "circle"; a structured arena for depicting and encountering a pantheon of Buddhas and bodhisattvas and various other levels of reality.>S:358 

a powerful word or phrase that is spoken or chanted in ritual or as an aid when practising meditation.

S<A set of words or sounds endowed with spiritual or magical potency; sometimes translated as "spell.">S:358

Middle Path

                                                                         (Rahula, What the Buddha Taught, p. 92) 

myth (mith) n.
1. a traditional or legendary story, esp. one that involves gods and heroes and explains a     cultural practice or natural object or phenomenon.
2. stories of this kind collectively; mythology.
3. an invented story, fictitious person, etc.: His account of the event is pure myth.
4. a belief or set of beliefs, often unproven or false, that have accrued around a person,     phenomenon, or institution: myths of racial superiority.

[1820-30; < LL mythos < Gk mythos story, word]

Nikaya Buddhism: Britannica, Strong88, L5:divergent, L12:Nikaya,
The "Buddhism of the schools"; a nonderogatory term used instead of Hinayana (the Lesser Vehicle).

nirvana: L6, L12:III:A2,
W<In Buddhism and other Indian religions, literally "extinction" and/or "extinguishing", is the culmination of the yogi's
pursuit of liberation.>W  

{Nirvana is equivalent to Spinoza's peace-of-mind (acquiescence of spirit or mind)}.

[Nirvana means "to extinguish" or 'to blow out" or "cessation" of desire.] [Pari nir va' na means "complete extinction"] 

1.  Cessation of suffering, the goal of Buddist life.
2. (often cap.) (in Buddhism) the final release from the cycle of reincarnations as a result of the     extinction of individual passion, hatred, and delusion, Parinirvana.
3. (often cap.) (in Hinduism) salvation through the union of Atman with Brahma.
4. a place or state characterized by freedom from pain and worry.

moksha (liberation of cycle of transmigration.) 

nirvana Sanskrit, literally "blowing out."
In Buddhism, a state free of all ignorance and desire, in which one ceases to accumulate karma and thus achieves liberation from the cycle of death and rebirth.


1. a way of speaking about the doctrine of Emptiness in Mahayana Buddhism.

12:IIIA. If everything is empty of any real identity, there can be no real difference between any             two things. As a result, Mahayana texts often equate Emptiness with "non-duality             {Substance}."  {Spinoza's pantheism—everything is a part of the infinite organismG-D.}

noumenon (nue' muh non ) n. pl. <-na> (-ne)
1. (in the philosophy of Kant) something that can be the object only of a purely intellectual,     nonsensuous intuition {
G-D} . Compare PHENOMENON (def. 4b).
4. PHENOMENON Philos. a. an appearance or immediate object of awareness in experience. b. (in Kantian     philosophy) a thing as it appears to and is constructed by the mind, as distinguished from a noumenon, or     thing-in-itself.

[1790-1800; < Gk nooúmenon a thing being perceived, n. use of neut. of passive prp. of noeîn to perceive]

numen (nue' min, nyue'-) n. pl. <-mi-na>(-muh nuh)
1. divine or supernatural power or presence, esp. as associated with a particular place or     object.

[1620-30; < L numen a nod, command, divine power, divinity, akin to nutare to nod the head in assent]

numinous (nue'muh nuhs, nyue'-) adj.
1. of, pertaining to, or like a numen; spiritual or supernatural.
2. surpassing comprehension or understanding; mysterious.
3. arousing one's elevated feelings of duty, honor, loyalty, etc.

paradigm {world view}
1. a set of all the inflected forms of a word based on a single stem or root,
    as boy, boy's, boys, boys '.
2. an example serving as a model; pattern: a paradigm of virtue.

[1475-85; < LL paradigma < Gk parádeigma pattern, der. (with -ma n. suffix) of paradeiknynai to show side by side = para- PARA -1 + deiknynai to show]

paradigm n. 1. They always held his brother up as a sort of paradigm: model, ideal, paragon, example, exemplar, pattern, matrix, standard, criterion, yardstick; prototype, archetype, original, sample.

S<One of six or ten perfections, the practice of which characterizes the life of a bodhisattva.>S359

1. of or pertaining to a pedagogue or pedagogy.

[1775-85; < Gk paidagogikós of a child's tutor. PEDAGOGUE, - IC]

1. a teacher; schoolteacher.
2. a person who is pedantic, dogmatic, and formal.
[1350-1400; ME pedagoge < L paedagogus < Gk paidagogós a boy's tutor.]

perspicuous (
1. clearly expressed or presented; lucid.

[1470-80; < L perspicuus transparent = perspic-, s. of perspicere to look or see through (per- PER - + -spicere, comb. form of specere to look; see INSPECT) + -uus deverbal adj. suffix;
see - OUS]

Prajna (Pali pañña):
1. wisdom, a crucial component of the path that leads to nirvana.

Pure Land:
Sukhavati ("Pleasurable"), the "Western Paradise" where the buddha Amitabha reigns.
A celestial paradise thought to be the home of Amitabha Buddha in the Mahayana tradition.

S<Pure Land. The paradisial realm of a Buddha in which devotees may be reborn after death; often specifically referring to the Western Pure Land of the Buddha Amitabha (the focus of faith for Buddhists of the Pure Land schools)>S:359.

Reincarnation <samsara "wandering"> <a burden> L5:V:C
1. the belief that the soul, upon death of the body, comes back to earth in another body or form. 2. rebirth of the soul in a new body.
3. a new incarnation or embodiment, as of a person.

[1855-60] . 

S<samsara - The process of death and re-birth, characterized by suffering, in which all beings are caught.>S:359

samsara wandering
the beginningless cycle of death and rebirth from which beings strive to gain liberation.

{Cash value of the belief in reincarnation: 
     1. The belief in being reborn evokes a close, personal, loving relationship with all life forms (the worm you see          could be your father reborn). Also it evokes the knowledge that everything, animate and inanimate, is made of
         One Eternal Substance.
 This is a form of Spinoza's Pantheism.
     2. Pedagogical; it is an incentive to good behavior in order to be reborn to a higher station or to be saved from a          lower station.} 


Religion is an ever-evolving hypothesis designed to achieve PEACE-OF-MIND.
When fleetingly achieved, it is called Bliss, Blessedness, Grace, Salvation, etc.

I read this definition (all definitions are working hypotheses) of religion many years ago but don't remember where. I think it was from Kant. This definition is in no way pejorative (
derogatory) of religion. On the contrary, it is the highest attainment of the human mind —Intuition-Revelation-Insight-Hypothesizing.

Rupa material form

Samadihi: L6:TB1:97,
1. Mental concentration.

1. Order of wandering monks and nuns—the first Buddhists.
2. Buddhist community

S<The Buddhist community of monks and nuns (also taken to include laymen and laywomen); one of the three refuges of Buddhism.>S:359

Samsara same as reincarnation.
the beginningless cycle of death and rebirth from which beings strive to gain liberation.

Sat (being, is), nonexistence or existence (either asat or sat)

Sila L6:III:B,
1. Morality; the upholding of Buddhist precepts; one of the paramitas.
2. moral precepts. Traditionally, lay people observe five precepts no killing, no stealing, no     lying, no abuse of sex, and no drinking intoxicants.

Skandha (Pali: khandha) screens and fires, rivers and flames. Perishable, L5:IV, L5:IV:C, L12:III.  

R<"Heap, mass"; appropriating group or personality aggregate, a term used to indicate that all aspects of personhood that exhibit permanence or unity, either separately or as a group, giving a sense of "ego" or "self," are in reality only impermanent, causally produced aggregations or groups.>R:240

1. The five aggregates, or agglomerations that constitute what is usually thought of as the
perishable} individual Self. They are form, feelings, perceptions, karmic constituents, and     consciousness. TB1:79. These five aggregates are only momentary, but they group together     to give the illusion of permanence, like the flow of a river or the flame of a candle. 

2. Because of the causal continuity between moments in the flame. it is possible to say that     I am the "same" person from one moment to the next {who constantly judges my very real-to-me      emotional condition at any one instant; say, the instant I put my hand into that flame.  L12:JBYcomment.}. 

12:2. These give the illusion of continuity, like the moments of flowing water that make up the     current of a river or the flickers of burning gas that make up the flame of a candle. 5:IIID:s321

TB1:181{6}. The Mahayana went beyond this traditional Buddhist idea of the self to deny the     reality not just of an enduring self, but to deny {Spinozism differs, proof} the reality {JBYnote1.} of     the moments themselves. L12:III:A.

1. the theory that only the self exists, or can be proved to exist.
2. self-absorption.

[1880-85; < L sol (us) only, SOLE 1 + ips (e) self + - ISM]

1. spiritual salvation, esp. by divine agency.
2. the branch of theology dealing with this.
Peace-of-mind brought by a Religion}

[1760-70; < Gk soterí (a) salvation, deliverance
(soter-, s. of sotér deliverer + -ia - Y 3) + - O - + - LOGY]

1. the philosophical system of Spinoza, which defines G-D as a unique substance possessing     infinite attributes of which we know only thought and extension. Posit G-D and One.
2. While there are differences, many of the concepts of Spinozism are similar to those of     Buddhism. Examples: concurrence; 'Emptiness' and 'All {
Most} is Suffering': differences; 'Good     and Bad', 'Karma', and the denial of the reality of the momentary phenomena.

stasis (stay' sis, stas' is) n. pl. <sta-ses>(stay'seez, stas'eez)
1. the state of equilibrium or inactivity caused by opposing equal forces.
2. stagnation in the flow of any of the fluids of the body.

[1735-45; < Gk stásis state of standing = sta- (s. of histánai to make stand;
see STAND) + -sis - SIS]

Suffering L5L5:V, L12:I:Truth1, 
I define 'suffering' as 'worrying', 'loss of Peace-of-Mind', 'frustration'; I define all other forms of suffering as 'sorrow'. I give different definitions to 'suffering' and 'sorrow' so as to distinguish and then synthesized them. 

Buddha's and Spinoza's teaching (to be objective, to understand) can bring 'Peace-of-Mind';
but not from physical 'pain'. 

You need the Buddha's and Spinoza's understanding (my interpretation of Truth 1), to alleviate, to remedy, the suffering (loss of PcM) that comes from pain (sorrow), (my interpretation of Truth 2).  

An example is losing an arm. You can have pain (sorrow) and at the same time have peace of mind if you know the cause(s) of the sorrow. (The removal of your infected arm on the medical advice that the arm must go to save your life. Of course, you will next ask "Why did the infection happen in the first place?".)  

At the limit of your knowledge, by a leap-of-faith (hypothesis), you can attribute the knowledge to the infinite knowledge of G-D, i.e. the chain of natural causes and their natural effects and the knowledge that things could not come to pass different than they are. That can give you peace of mind, if the faith in the hypothesis is strong enough; the pain and sorrow, however, still persist. 

Suffering {loss of peace of mind} is not sorrow, but not understanding the cause(s) of the sorrow and the {futile} human desire to hold on {attachment} to {perishable} things and keep them from {negatively} changing. 

Sutras - Discourses
a Buddhist scriptural text.
S<Any doctrinal discourse attributed to the Buddha; one of the principal divisions of the Buddhist Canon>S"360

a Chinese religious and philosophical tradition that stresses the value of harmony with nature.

Tantra (tun' truh, tän'-, tan'-) n. pl. <-tras> <power>
1. (italics) any of several books of esoteric Hindu doctrine regarding rituals, disciplines,     meditation, etc., composed in the form of dialogues between Shiva and his Shakti.
2. (l.c.) Also called the exoteric {
suitable for communication to the general public.} philosophy or practice     based on these writings: influential in Buddhism, esp. in Tibet.
3. the name given to ancient sacred texts and the movements to which they were foundational     in Buddhism (from ca. 7th century c.e.). These texts stress ritual, symbolism, and rapid     enlightenment involving the concept of "wrathful deities." Mandalas commonly appear in the     Tantra.
4. the term originally means the warp in a piece of cloth, used to refer to a variety of Buddhism     that appeared in India in the 6th century c.e.

teleology (tel ee ol' uh jee, tee lee-) n.
1. the doctrine that final causes exist.
2. the study of the evidences of design or purpose in nature.
3. such design or purpose.
4. the belief that purpose and design are a part of or are apparent in nature.
5. (in vitalist philosophy) the doctrine that phenomena are guided not only by mechanical forces     but that they also move toward certain goals of self-realization.

[1730-40; < NL teleologia (1728); see TELEO -, - LOGY]
teleo- 1. a combining form meaning " end, " " complete ": teleology.Also, <telo-;> esp. before a vowel, <tel-, tele-.> [comb. form repr. Gk télos end, and téleios perfect, complete]

Derived words tel e-o-log'i-cal(-uh loj'i kuhl)tel e-o-log'ic, adj. tel e-o-log'i-cal-ly, adv. tel e-ol'o-gist, n.

tenable (ten' uh buhl) adj.
1. capable of being held, maintained, or defended.

tendentious or <ten-den-cious>(ten den' shuhs) also <> ten-den-tial(-shuhl) adj.
1. having or showing a tendency to favor or promote a point of view; biased:
    a tendentious novel.

tentative (ten' tuh tiv) adj.
1. of the nature of or made or done as a trial, experiment, or attempt: a tentative agreement.
2. unsure; not definite or positive; hesitant: a tentative smile.

tenuous (ten' yue uhs) adj.
1. lacking a sound basis; unsubstantiated; weak.
2. thin or slender in form.
3. thin in consistency; rare or rarefied.
4. of slight importance or significance; unsubstantial.

tenuous adj.
1. Some legislators made a rather tenuous argument against the bill: weak, flimsy, shaky, unsubstantial, unsupported, slight, slim, thin, slender, frail, fragile, delicate, gossamer, shallow, paltry, unconvincing, halfhearted, uncertain, indefinite.
antonyms strong, solid, valid, substantial.

Theravada (Pali) Strong88, L12:Nikaya,
1. Literally, the teaching of the elders; a sect of the Nikaya Buddhism that became established     in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia.
2. the "Doctrine of the Elders," the only surviving example of the eighteen nikayas or "schools"     of traditional Buddhism. The Theravada is now the dominant form of Buddhism in Southeast     Asia.

"Theravada" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004]. 

(Pali“Way of the Elders”) major form of Buddhism prevalent in Sri Lanka (Ceylon), Myanmar (Burma), Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos.  

Three Baskets (tripitaka) ( (Pali: “Triple Basket”):
the three sections of the Buddhist scriptures.

"Tipitaka" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004]. 

Three Jewels:
The Buddha, Dharma, and Samgha also known as the three refuges.

"Triratna" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004] (Sanskrit “Three Jewels”) 

Thing (res)

From Shirley's Bk.VII:249Thing {Object—that which persists in its existence.}. 

Upanishad (ue pan'i shad , ue pä'ni shäd ) n.
1. any of a class of Hindu treatises, usu. in dialogue form, composed between the 8th and 6th centuries B.C. AND FIRST WRITTEN a.d. c1300.
2. the portion of the Veda that contained the most extensive speculation about the nature of reality and the doctrine of reincarnation.

[1800-10; < Skt upanisad = upa near + ni- down + -sad, sandhi variant of sad- SIT]

Veda (vay'duh, vee'-) n. pl. <-das>
1. Sometimes, <Vedas.> the sacred scriptures of Hinduism, esp. as comprising the hymns and     formulas in the Rig-Veda, the Sama-Veda, the Atharva-Veda, and the Yajur-Veda.
2. Also called <Samhita> any of these individual writings.

another name for the Upanishads, the "end of the Veda."

Viññana: Britannica, L5:IV - consciousness

Vishnu (vish'nue) n. {Equivalent to Spinoza's G-DDeus}
1. " the Preserver, " the second member of the Hindu Trimurti, along with Brahma the Creator     and Shiva the Destroyer, believed to have descended from heaven to earth in several     incarnations, most importantly as Krishna. [< Skt visnu]

"Vishnu" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 27, 2004]. 

Weltanschauung (velt' än shou oong) n. German
1. a comprehensive conception or image of the universe and of humanity's relation to it. [lit.,     world-view]

yoga (yoh' guh) n. (sometimes cap.)
1. a system of physical and mental disciplines practiced to attain control of body and mind,     tranquillity, etc., esp. a series of postures and breathing exercises.
2. a school of Hindu philosophy using such a system to unify the self with the Supreme Being or     ultimate principle.

"Yoga" from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service. [Accessed September 26, 2004]. 

1. Japanese zen, meditation, from Chinese Chan. A school of Japanese Buddhism that focuses     on meditation.
2. the meditation school of Japanese Buddhism.

Bibliography from TB1:206 

Aung San Suu Kyi. Freedom from Fear and Other Writings. London: Penguin Books, 1991. The collected speeches of the 1991 recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Basho , Matsuo. The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches. London: Penguin Books, 1966. A graceful translation and thorough analysis of the work of Japan's most respected Zen poet.

Berthier, Francois. Reading Zen in the Rocks.- The Japanese Dry Landscape Garden. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000. A fascinating and original study of Japanese contemplative gardens.

Brauen, Martin. Mandala: Sacred Circle in Tibetan Buddhism. Boston: Shambhala, 1997. A lively and informative account of the symbolism and ritual practices associated with the mandala. The book recently has gone out of print, but it is widely available in libraries and used book services.

Brown, W. Norman. Man in the Universe: Some Continuities in Indian Thought. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1970. Still the most concise and accessible introduction to the religious problematic of Indian thought. Unfortunately, this book is out of print, but it is widely available in libraries and used book services.
Lectures 1:6, 2:11, 3:15

Chan, Wing-tsit. A Sourcebook of Chinese Philosophy. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1969. A useful survey of the schools of Chinese philosophy with accurate, readable translations and informative introductions.

Ch'en, Kenneth. Buddhism in China: A Historical Survey. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1964. A useful survey of the history of Buddhism in China.

Conze, Edward. Buddhist Scriptures. London: Penguin Books, 1959. A superb collection of Buddhist scriptural sources, strongest on the Indian tradition. 

Conze, Edward. The Large Sutra on Perfect Wisdom. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1975. Translation of one of the Mahayana tradition's most influential sutras on the perfection of wisdom and Emptiness.

Craven, Roy C. Indian Art: A Concise History. Revised edition. London: Thames and Hudson, 1997. A compact and accurate summary of the history of Indian art.

Dalai Lama. Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of the Dalai Lama. New York: HarperCollins, 1990. The most recent autobiographica! statement by the current Dalai Lama.

deBary, Wm. Theodore, ed. Sources of Chinese Tradition. New York: Columbia University Press, 1960. An authoritative compendium of primary sources in translation covering the full range of Chinese history. 

deBary, Wm. Theodore, ed. Sources of Japanese Tradition. New York: Columbia University Press, 1958. Another authoritative compendium covering the sources of Japanese history.

Earhart, H. Byron. Japanese Religion: Unity and Diversity. Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1982. A useful introduction to the history of Japanese religion.

Eckel, Malcolm David. To See the Buddha: A Philosophers Quest for the Meaning of Emptiness. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1994. A study of the relationship between Indian Buddhist philosophy and the tradition of Mahayana devotion. ISBN 048620250X.
Received 9/02/04

Faure, Bernard. The Rhetoric of Immediacy: A Cultural Critique of ChanlZen Buddhism. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991. A critical study of the prevailing interpretative myths in the study of Zen Buddhism.

Fields, Rick. How the Swans Came to the Lake: A Narrative History of Buddhism in America. Boulder, Colorado: Shambhala, 1981. A graceful and inclusive survey of the introduction of Buddhism to North America, including commentary on early European contacts with Buddhism.

Hanh, Thich Nhat. The Miracle of Mindfulness: A Manual on Meditation. Boston: Beacon Press, 1987. A brief and eloquent account of Buddhist meditation by one of the best known contemporary Vietnamese masters.

Huntington, Susan L. The Art of Ancient India: Buddhist, Hindu, Jain. New York: Weatherhill, 1985. A detailed and authoritative survey of the tradition of Indian art by the doyenne of Indian art in America.

Kalupahana, David J. Buddhist Philosophy: A Historical Analysis. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1976. A useful introduction to the diversity of Buddhist philosophy in the Indian tradition.

Lhalungpa, Lobsang P. The Life of Milarepa. Boulder, Colorado: Shambhala, 1984. A vivid and appealing translation of the biography of one of Tibet's most beloved saints.

Nagarjuna. The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way. Trans. Jav L. Garfield. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995. A contemporay translation of the fundamental text in the Madhyamaka School of Indian Buddhist philosophy.

Olivelle, Patrick, trans. Upanisads. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1996. A new and fluent translation of the classical Upanishads with an informative and thorough introduction.
Received 8/28/04; 6.80 + 3.00. 

Prebisch, Charles S., and Tanaka, Kenneth K., eds. The Faces of Buddhism in America. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998. A collection of essays by specialists in different aspects of American Buddhism.

Rahula, Walpola. What the Buddha Taught. New York: Grove Press, 1972. A concise and accessible introduction to the Buddha's teaching by a respected Sri Lankan monk.
Received 8/28/04; 2.95 + 3.50.

Robinson, Richard H., and Johnson, Willard L. The Buddhist Religion: A Historical Introduction. 4th edition. Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1997. The newly revised edition of one of the standard historical introductions to the history of Buddhism.
Received 8/25/04; 3.99 + 3.00. 

Shunryu, Suzuki. Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind. New York Weatherhill, 1976. A modern Zen classic, this book has functioned as a lively and thoughtful introduction to Zen for a generation of Zen practitioners.

Stein, R. A. Tibetan Civilization. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1972. A fascinating and accessible survey of Tibetan culture by an authoritative French scholar.

Strong, John S. The Experience of Buddhism: Sources and Interpretations. Belmont, California: Wadsworth, 1995. A rich and varied compendium of Buddhist sources, ranging all the way from classical India to contemporary America. Each selection is introduced by a brief commentary that situates the selection in the development of the Buddhist history.
Received 8/26/04; 4.89 + 3.49. 

Suzuki, Daisetz T. Zen and Japanese Culture. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1959. The most inclusive study of Zen by one of its most famous and influential interpreters in the West.

Tanahashi, Kazuo, ed. Moon in a Dewdrop: Writings of Zen Muster Dogen. New York: North Point Press, 1985. Clear and eloquent translations of Dogen's major writings.

ten Grotenhuis, Elizabeth. Japanese Mandalas.- Representations of Sacred Geography. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1999. An attractive and authoritative study of the use of mandalas in the Japanese tradition.

Watson, Burton, trans. The Lotus Sutra. New York: Columbia University Press, 1993. A translation of the Chinese version of one of the Mahayana's most influential sutras.

White, David Gordon, ed. Tantra in Practice. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000. An encyclopedic collection of texts and commentary related to the Tantric tradition in Asia.

Wright, Arthur F. Buddhism in Chinese History. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1959. An authoritative and concise survey of the history of Chinese Buddhism.

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Buddhistic Glossary 
Revised: September 8, 2005 


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