Questions tagged [terminology]

The study of terms and their use. Specifically this will include requests for clarification of Buddhist terms and comparisons of terms within or between traditions.

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Why is it called "Nama" as in namarupam?'

Nama, as in namarupa, the designation of 'feeling, perception, attention, intention & contact', why do they call these 'Nama'? Some clues or points to keep in mind; intention (cetana) is kamma ...
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An example of Papañca?

Is the following anyhow related to 'Papañca' in the apparent 'proliferation' as you understand it? And which are the 18 craving-verbalizations dependent on what is internal? There being 'I am,' there ...
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Namarupa as 'mentality & materiality', why or why not?

I see some teachers express 'namarupam' as 'mentality & materiality' and want to hear what you have to say on this matter.
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Are the titles “lama” and “rinpoche” given or self-proclaimed?

Are the titles “lama” and “rinpoche”, referring to a Buddhist teacher or leader, titles that are granted? Or are they titles that someone can give themselves? Or both? By “granted” I mean they require ...
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Is the word "samsara" composed of simpler concepts etymologically or otherwise?

Looking up the word samsara, or the Wiki page leads to the same definition you see most places: The endless cycle of birth, existence and death. However, that is a lot of concept to pack into one ...
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What does the word Bodhi mean etymologically?

Looking up the Pali bodhi leads to Sanskrit bodhi, which says "perfect knowledge or wisdom", from Proto-Indo European "to be awake". Perfect wisdom and being awake are not the same ...
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Should dukkha be translated as `being unexpected`?

Dukkha is traditionally translated as suffering, but I heard from a scholar of Eastern history that it's better translated as being unexpected. In my interpretation (not just in what I heard), that ...
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Hard breath (intentional breath) in Pali

When your mind is wandering during Anapana, you may use "Hard Breath" (intentional breath). What is the Pali word for this technique? What is the Pali text explaining this "hard breath&...
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Word that refers to a "second chance" or redemption?

Is there a specific word in Buddhism that refers to a "second chance" or perhaps redemption?
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So what is a Buddhist and what makes a person a Buddhist?

In brief Devadatta was Buddha's cousin and a monk. He could fly, tried to kill the Buddha, did many bad things and went to hell. Devadatta did not understand dependent origination correctly; essence ...
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5 answers
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What is ariya or noble?

What is ariya or noble? This term is used in multiple places like Four Noble Truths (cattāri ariyasaccāni), Noble Eightfold Path (ariya aṭṭhaṅgika magga), noble sangha (ariya saṅgha).
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Is it correct to refer to "Buddha" without "the"

Wikipedia uses "the Buddha" to refer to the founder while a book uses "Buddha" without the definite article. from "Meetings with Remarkable People By Osho" Is it correct ...
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Personal Geospatial Placement perspective terminology

What would be the proper terminology to define the different geospatial perspectives of myself? If I envision myself inside my body viewing an experience in front of me, such as when I watch a movie, ...
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Sati • Yonisomanasikara

Dearest friends, seeking to clarify my fragmentary understanding of these matters, I would very much appreciate your comments on the distinction between Sati Mindfulness and Yonisomanasikara Attention ...
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4 answers
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Can you explain "Wishlessness" (one of the Three Doors of Liberation)?

I am particularly interested in the relation between Wishlessness and Love. As far as I understand Wishlessness means that there is no suffering or ignorance as such. I'm mainly guiding myself by this ...
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What is today’s equivalent of a world system?

Buddhism mentions “world systems.” What’s the equivalent terminology for a world system in the parlance of contemporary astrophysics?
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Sanskrit and Pali roots

What is the Best , online Sanskrit-English dictionary. I want to do research on the early root meanings and usage of certain Buddhist words in early India. Say 5,000 years ago, or at least, 3,000 ...
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Breach of precept term

What is the Pali or Sanskrit term for a breach of a precept? I have checked http://dictionary.tamilcube.com/pali-dictionary.aspx and found breach of morality defined as sīlabheda . Is there a broader ...
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Do all words belong to conventional truth (Sammuti Sacca)?

"Sanketa vacanam saccam - loka sammuti karanam Paramattha vacanam saccam - dhammanam tathalakkhanam" According to the above quote, all the words (cenventional truth) made by living beings using any ...
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What is meant by ‘threefold bliss’ in the “verses of sharing and aspiration”

What is meant by the “threefold bliss” in the verses of sharing and aspiration: Through the goodness that arises from my practice, May my spiritual teachers and guides of great virtue, My ...
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What is the difference between mindfulness and detachment?

From Mindfulness: Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one's attention to experiences occurring in the present moment, which one can develop through the practice of meditation and ...
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Do the words Sacred, Divine and Spiritual have any context in Buddhism?

Edit: *In our lay following of the path of Dhamma we need an external object of veneration and an external connotation to actions, which gives it a positive meaning, to help us stick to the actions. ...
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Would a true Buddhist engage in the No True Scotsman fallacy?

The No true Scotsman fallacy is a rhetorical trick to avert criticism of a generalization by appealing to the impurity of counterexamples i.e., "no true Scotsman would do such a thing!" My question ...
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What’s the difference between yathābhūta and yathābhūtaṃ?

I’ve been reading about this term and have found it written in both ways. I don’t know if the difference is related to some kind of verb form.
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The feeling that one is constantly one step away from enlightenment

The feeling that one is constantly one step away from enlightenment: does it have a Buddhist term for it? Pejorative or otherwise. So I've heard of beginner's mind, but I doubt it covers it.
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How can the term "spirit" be translated into Buddhist doctrine?

How can the term "spirit" be translated into Buddhist doctrine? If I may just copy paste the definition: Moreover, could be mean anything unconditioned, permanent, or in some way separate from the ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Understanding beginningless

I often see the word beginning-less in Buddhist readings and on this site but how do I try to understand this concept being the ignorant human being I am? Is it just a metaphorical way to describe a ...
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What is the meaning of 'acala sukha'?

What is the exact meaning of 'acala sukha'? Is it mentioned in the Pali-canon? If so, where ? In what context ?
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What is the difference between mano and citta? [duplicate]

What is the difference between the Pali-words mano and citta
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Vedana: does it include feeling sleepy, dizzy, alert…

I am a (somewhat lackadaisical) follower of S.N. Goenka's meditation teachings. After a couple of 10-day retreats and reading some articles such as this: http://www.vridhamma.org/Why-Vedana-and-What-...
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3 votes
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Sanskrit term for a "Buddhist"

What is the Sanskrit term for a person who is a follower of the Buddha, i.e. a "Buddhist"? Things I tried: I searched online but couldn't find anything. I looked in the only Sanskrit I have access to,...
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Pronounce the word "Buddh" - phonetics

What is the phonetic of the word "Buddh" spoken in time 21:47 to 21:48 minutes of this video. I am a novice in phonetics. The phonetic of the word Buddha is wriiten as [bud̪ːʱə] in this wikipedia ...
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The proper meaning of Bhagava

What is the real meaning of Bhagava? Or are there any multiple meanings? Sutta references are appreciated. -Metta
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Is dhammakaya a synonym of 'real nature of things'?

Is it correct to say that dhammakaya (the sum of all Buddha's teachings) is a synonym of 'the real nature of reality'?
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Why deos 'rebirth' imply there is no soul? [duplicate]

Buddhists avoid 'reincarnation' instead of 'rebirth'. Especially if we don't mean rebirth into an intermediate state, the term 'reincarnation', to me, seems OK. Why does 'rebirth' imply there is no ...
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2 answers
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Buddha's Power of Seeing Other Beings Mind

What is the proper Pali word for Buddha's power of seeing other beings mind? I think it starts with Paricitta or something. I want the proper Pali term. Also, can I have any sutta references to it as ...
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6 votes
2 answers
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Nine different ways the word ‘Mind’ is used?

I was reading a comment on this answer and it mentioned the word mind being used in nine different ways. Comment below : If you learn to apply episteme, the way Foucault, Derrida, and Kant had ...
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What does Robert M. Pirsig's "Quality" correspond to in Buddhism?

The concept of "Quality" relates to the direct experience of the moment, as described in the book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I was wondering if this has a parallel in Buddhism? To me, ...
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3 votes
2 answers
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Does "Connected Causes" mean the same thing as Dependent Origination?

I prefer the phrase "Connected Causes" to Dependent Origination or the alternatives such as Dependent Arising, Dependent Co-arising and so on, I feel that it is more direct and understandable. But I ...
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2 votes
4 answers
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Taking refuge in practice

My understanding of "taking refuge" is reciting a mantra. However, is there a certain ceremony to become fully Buddhist? Is it just repeating the mantra X number of times, or is there more to it?
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6 votes
3 answers
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What is the difference between an arhat, bodhisattva and a buddha?

What is the difference between an arhat, a bodhisattva and a buddha? References to the scriptures would be most helpful. I'm open to both Theravada and Mahayana perspectives.
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Abhava versus Vibhava

Is there a difference between abhava and vibhava? Or are those words synonyms? When they are not synonyms, what is their exact meaning.
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What is the difference between Dhamma Diksha and Dhamma Parivarta

I need your kind suggestion regarding different terms in our Buddhism. I wanted to know: What is the difference between Dhamma Diksha and Dhamma Parivarta? If a person from Hindu religion is getting ...
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5 votes
5 answers
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What does "intention" mean?

I see two Pali words which are translated into English as "intention": Cetanā used in the definition of karma Sankappa used in the definition of the Noble Eightfold Way. Do these two words mean ...
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The four requisites for trade

In the Vanijja Sutta Buddha talks about the four requisites for trade. I couldn't find the four anywhere, does anybody know what he refers to?
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Tathā synonymous with Tathātā?

From wiki: "Tathā means "thus" in Sanskrit and Pali, and Buddhist thought takes this to refer to what is called "reality as-it-is" (yathābhūta). This reality is also referred to as "thusness" or "...
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Kamma and sankharas

Can kamma and sankharas be considered as synonyms? And if not, which are the differences between both? Which is the relationship between them?
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Dhamma and Buddha Dhamma

Are the words Dhamma and Buddha Dhamma synonyms? Or are there hidden differences between between both? Are these words used in different circumstances?
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Canonical definition of Upekkha

Where can I find a canonical definition of equanimity (upekkha) in the Theravada buddhist texts?
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4 votes
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Did I describe the following concept correctly?

In a discussion, my meditation leader was talking about people who cannot control their cravings and wants, who are easily subjected to actions based on their whims and wants of their anger. He ...
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