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adhimokkha (Skt. adhimokṣa): determination, decision, resolve: is one of the mental concomitants (cetasika) and belongs to the group of mental formations (saṅkhārakkhandha).
adhiṭṭhāna (from adhi meaning “higher” or “best” plus sthā meaning
“standing”) has been translated as “decision,” “resolution,”
“self-determination,” “will” and “resolute determination.”In the late
canonical literature of Theravada Buddhism, adhiṭṭhāna is one of the ten
“perfections” (dasa pāramiyo), exemplified by the bodhisatta’s resolve
to become fully awakened.
akusala: unwholesome, unskillfulness
anapanasati: mindfulness of breathing
anicca: impermanence; inconstancy
anumodanā: Literally, it means “rejoicing together,” but it can also mean approval and encouragement.
aparimāṇa: limitless; immeasurable, unconditional
Arahant: Liberated one
arambhadhatu: “element of beginning” or “element of effort”
ariya (Skt. arya): noble; as in ariya-sacca, meaning “noble truth” or
“truth of the noble ones.” More specifically, the term ariya-sacca
refers to the Buddha’s “Four Noble Truths”.
asaññasatto: without thoughts or perceptions
āsava: mental effluent, pollutant, or fermentation. Four qualities —
sensuality, views, becoming, and ignorance — that “flow out” of the mind
and create the flood of the round of death and rebirth.
atanka: illness; disease
atta: (Skt. atman) refers to a self
avihinsa: non-violence, non-cruelty; kindness to the weak
avijja: ignorance or delusion
ayatana: sphere of perception or sense in general, object of thought, sense-organ
bhavana: meditation, cultivation of wisdom and virtue, insight
bhavanga: (Pali, “ground of becoming”) is the most fundamental aspect of
mind in Theravada Buddhism. (The term does not occur in the Nikayas,
though the Theravada tradition identifies it with one that does; the
phenomenon described as “luminous mind.”)
bodhi: to awake, become aware, notice, know or understand
bodhicitta: awakened heart-mind
Bodhisatta: (Skt. Bodhisattva) A future Buddha
Buddha: an Enlightened being “Awakened”
Buddho: one who is awakened to the truth
Budu saranai: (Sinhalese) May the peace and blessings of the Buddha be with you
cārita: temperament, nature, character or habitual conduct
Cārita is of six types:
* Raga carita (the greedy or passionate nature)
* Dosa carita (the angry nature)
* Moha carita (the deluded nature)
* Saddha carita (the faithful nature)
* Buddhi carita (the intelligent nature)
* Vitakka carita (the ruminating or pondering nature)
chanda: (known in full as kusalachanda or dhammachanda). Chanda, or
zeal, is the real incentive for any truly constructive actions. However,
zeal may be impeded by desire and its attachments to laziness,
lethargy, or personal comfort. In this case, desire will stain any
attempts to perform good actions with suffering, by resisting the
practice through these negative states. If there is clear understanding
of the advantage of those actions and sufficient appreciation (chanda)
of them, enabling the burdening effect of desire to be overcome, chanda
becomes, in addition to an impetus for action, a cause for happiness.
cetanā: commonly translated as “volition”, “intention”,
“directionality”, or “attraction”. It can be defined as a mental factor
that moves or urges the mind in a particular direction, toward a
specific object or goal.
cetovimutti: liberation of mind: liberation of mind from defilements
citta: mind, consciousness (Bhikkhu Bodhi: Citta signifies mind as the
centre of personal experience, as the subject of thought, volition and
dana: ‘foodgiving’, generosity, offering
Dhamma: (Skt. dharma) liberating law discovered by the Buddha, summed up
in the Four Noble Truths, the Truth, Reality, natural law, all physical
and mental phenomena
dukkha: unsatisfactoriness, suffering, pain, distress, discontent, stress, the impermanence of all phenomena
ehipassiko: The dhamma welcomes all beings to put it to the test and to
experience it for themselves. Literally “Come and see for yourself.”
ekaggatā (Skt. ekāgratā) means “one-pointedness” or “unification”. This mental factor is one of the components in the jhānas.
jara: old; decayed; decrepit
Jāti: (Pali word for “birth”) refers to the arising of a new living entity in saṃsāra.
jhana: (Skt. dhyana) meditative absorption, a state of strong concentration.
kalyana mitta: lovely friend (Sometimes interpreted as spiritual friend)
kamma: (Skt. karma): (lit.-action) The law of cause and effect; intentional acts
kasina: Spherical or disc shaped mental visual object of meditation
kataññu (katannu-katavedi): knowing what has been done; recollecting what has been done; gratitude
khanda: (Skt. skandha): Five aggregates which form the raw material for
one’s sense of self: form/body, feeling, perception, mental formations,
khanti: patience, tolerance, endurance, forebearance
kilesa: (defilements) greed, aversion, delusion
kusala: wholesome, skillful, of good merit
metta: Lovingkindness, good will
moha: (lit.-to be stupified) delusion
muditā: sympathetic joy or joy with others. The ability of being happy
in the happiness of others and is therefore the opposite of jealousy,
spite and envy.
nandi: joy, enjoyment, pleasure, delight, hedonic gratification
nibbana: (Skt. nirvana): the cessation of suffering, enlightenment, liberation
nibbida: Disenchantment; aversion; disgust; weariness. The skillful
turning-away of the mind from the conditioned samsaric world towards the
unconditioned, the transcendent; Nibbana.
nikati (Skt. nikṛti) fraud, deceit, cheating
nikāya: a word of meaning “collection” of discourses (used to describe
groupings of discourses according to theme, length, or other categories.
For example, the Sutta Piṭaka is broken up into five nikāyas)
nikkamadhatu: “proceeding” with your effort”, the element of exertion
nirodha: cessation, extinction, as in third noble truth concerned with the cessation of suffering (dukkha)
nissarana: way out or exit; release, escape, abandon, freedom, liberation
opanayiko: referring inwardly; to be brought inward. An epithet for the Dhamma
pahāna: ‘overcoming’, abandoning. There are 5 kinds of overcoming: 1
overcoming by repression vikkhambhana-pahāna i.e. the temporary
suspension of the 5 hindrances nīvarana during the absorptions, 2
overcoming by the opposite tadanga-pahāna 3 overcoming by destruction
samuccheda-pahāna 4 overcoming by tranquillization patipassaddhi-pahāna 5
overcoming by escape nissarana-pahāna
papañca: Complication, proliferation; tendency of the mind to proliferate issues from the sense of “self.”
parakkkamadhatu: valor; strength of mind or spirit that enables a person to proceed with firmness; strong determination
paramattha: absolute or ultimate reality
parami: perfections, virtues necessary for the realization of Awakening
pariyatti: Theoretical understanding of Dhamma obtained through reading, study, and learning.
passaddhi: calmness,tranquility, repose and serenity.
paticcasamuppāda: commonly translated as dependent origination or dependent arising.
paṭipatti: The practice of dhamma, as opposed to mere theoretical knowledge (pariyatti).
paṭivedha: ‘penetration’, signifies the realization of the truth of the
Dhamma, as distinguished from the mere acquisition of its wording
pariyatti or the practice patipatti of it, in other words, realization
as distinguished from theory and practice.
pranayama: a Sanskrit word meaning “extension of the breath” or more accurately, “extension of the life force”.
piti: Rapture or happiness, bliss
puñña: merit, meritorious, is a popular term for karmically wholesome (kusala) action.
saddha: faith, confidence (Lit.-to place one’s heart on)
samadhi: concentration; meditative absorption; a deep state of meditation
samānattatā: impartiality, feeling towards others as towards oneself without bias or partiality
Samatha: A term referring to the group of meditation practices that aim at samadhi
sampajañña: Alertness; self-awareness; presence of mind; clear comprehension.
samsára: (lit.-perpetual wandering) ocean of worldly suffering; round of rebirth; pursuit of renewed existence
samvega: spiritual urgency
sangha: the community of Buddhist monks & nuns; recently: “the community of followers on the Buddhist path.”
sankara (Skt. samskara): concoctions; fabrications
sati: mindfulness, awareness
sati sampajañña: mindfully clearly know
sila: moral conduct; precept; virtue; moral restraint
sukha: happiness; pleasure; ease; bliss
suñña: void (ness), empty (emptiness)
sutta: (lit. thread; Skt. sutra) discourse of the Buddha or one of his leading disciples
tanha: (lit. thirst) craving
Tathagata: (Lit. thus gone) an Enlightened person
Theravada: (Doctrine of the elders)- school of Buddhism that draws its
inspiration from the Pali Canon, or Tipitaka, the oldest surviving
record of the Buddha’s teachings. Has been the predominant religion of
southeast Asia (Thailand, Sri Lanka, Burma)
Tipitaka: (Literally Three baskets)- The Pali Canon- has Three divisions:
1. Sutta Pitaka- discourses of the Buddha, (Five collections-nikayas- 10,000 suttas)
2. Abhidhamma Pitaka- treatises offering systematic treatment of topics in the suttas
3. Vinaya Pitaka- rules for ordained monks and nuns
upāsaka/upāsikā: Buddhist lay men are called upāsaka and lay women
upāsikā. Both Pali words are derived from ‘to sit close’ (upāsati) and
‘to attend to’ (upāsana) Monks.
Upādāna: the Pāli word for “clinging,” “attachment” or “grasping”, although the literal meaning is “fuel.”
Vipallāsa: perversions or distortions
Vipassana: literally, “to see clearly”; insight; insight into the truth
of anicca (impermanence), anatta (not-self), & dukkha
(unstatisfactoriness), to see things as they really are
viriya: effort; persistence; energy
GWV master directory of translations of the
The Earliest Buddhist Canon of Literature
The Three Baskets
Discourses of the Buddha
For further study
Contemplative’s Pali-English, English-Pali Dictionary (a work in
progress), Edited by Jhanananda
Other Pali Dictionaries Resources and
A Glossary of Key Buddhist
Terms and Concepts
A Buddhist Timeline
Understanding the original language of
the Buddha and his teachings (suttas/sutras)
One of the goals of the
Great Western Vehicle is to bring the Buddha’s
teachings to the broadest audience. In an effort to meet that goal
we have provided as much of the
original Discourses of the Buddha in English translation as we could find
in the public domain.
GWV master directory of translations of the Tipitaka in English, Romanized
Pali and Sinhala is a compilation of the work of 24 different translators.
It includes the work of monastics, such as: Bhikkhuni
Upalavanna; Bhikkhus: Amaravati, ânandajoti, Bodhi,
Jhanananda, Ñanamoli, Ñanananda, Narada, Nyanaponika,
Nyanasatta, Piyadassi, Soma and Thanissaro; scholars such as: V.
A.D. Jayasundere, F. Max Müller,
Horner, Olendzki, T. W. Rhys Davids, Story, Strong, Vajira and Woodward. Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s English translations are thanks
to Insight, which included the work of other excellent translators.
The translations of F. Max Muller, T.W. Rhys Davids et al are thanks
to the PALI
Every culture that has embraced Buddhism has
spent the first few centuries of that endeavor in acquiring and translating
Baskets, which includes the Discourses of the Buddha (sutta/sutra pitaka).
It is a matter of history that the Buddha spoke in the common language
his region. The Pali language
is a liturgical language that is based upon that language.
Once the Buddha’s teachings were written down they were almost immediately
translated into Sinhala and Sanskrit. When Buddhism arrived in China, then
Korea, then Japan then Tibet, the Three Baskets were acquired in Sanskrit
then translated into the languages of those above regions.
As the English speaking peoples embrace Buddhism we have the
choice to acquire the teachings of the Buddha in the above mentioned languages,
however, why go through three layers of translation, which are only going
to increase the likelihood of translator bias and religious
dogma, when we can go back to
of the Buddha, which was closest related
For scholarly purposes we believe serious students of Buddhism
are going to want to penetrate through the fog of translator bias and
religious dogma to get as close to the original teachings of the Buddha
as one can. For that purpose we have included the Romanized form of the
Pali. We have also included the Sinhala version as a gift to the Sri Lankan
who have preserved the earliest sources of Buddhist literature.
The Romanized Pali is based upon the Sri
Lanka Buddha Jayanti Tipitaka Series.
The Sinhala is A.P. de Soyza’s translations. The English
is by 24 translators often downloaded from the Internet thanks to Metta
Net, Access to Insight, and
TEXT SOCIETY “Sacred Books of the Buddhists” and “Sacred
Books of the East, thanks to Sacred Texts.
If only one person is relieved of suffering by our efforts,
then our work was well spent.
Inyo National Forest, September 17 2005
the English Translators
(1) Sister Upalavanna
(2) A.D. Jayasundere
(3) misc. & anon
(4) T. W. Rhys Davids
(12) Bodhi, Soma
(17) F. Max Müller
The latest update of the MettaNet Tipitaka in
a single Zip file of 24.8 MB, uploaded
on June, 11, 2005
Online Tipiṭaka Research and Practice
University and related NEWS through http://sarvajan.ambedkar.org in
105 CLASSICAL LANGUAGES
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