Buddhist Terms

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Lexicon of Buddhist terms

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Glossary of Buddhist Terms

Glossary of Buddhist Terms A

AbhidharmaThe section of Buddhist scriptures concerned with philosophical, cosmological and psychological analysis. Abhisheka_ Empowerment Almighty Ocean[Tib. Gyalwa Gyamtso, Skt. Jinasagara] Red, sitting four-armed form of Loving Eyes in Union. AltarThe Altar can consist of several groups of objects. Most important are the three objects representing _ Buddhas body, speech and mind. They constitute a basic altar. The first of this objects is a statue of Buddha or of a _ Bodhisattva. It is placed in the center. Second object is a sacred text. It represents Buddhas speech, is wrapped in maroon or yellow cloth and is placed on the left side. On the right side of the altar a _ Stupa as a symbol of Buddhas mind is located. For all of these objects pictures may be used as substitutes. In addition pictures of Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, _ Lamas and _ Protectors can be arranged around these three objects. The second group concerns offerings. In most cases seven bowls are used. They contain offerings made to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. The bowls are arranged in a straight line and contain (from the left to the right as one faces the altar): Bowl with water to drink (represents the purity of mind) Bowl with water for washing (represents the purity of the body) Rice and flowers (represents the beauty of sight) Rice and incense (represents the pervasiveness of the _ Dharma) Candle (represents illumination: darkness is ignorance, brightness is wisdom) Fragrant water (represents devotion) Rice and food (fruits or sweets) (offered as a gesture of gratitude) Sometimes a conch shell or a Ting-shag is offered (represents the awakening of beings hearing the Dharma)

As a third group _ Tormas, _ Dorje, _ Bell, a crystal ball and other objects can be used. Either permanently ore only during special rituals. The altar should be on a higher place. AmithabaThe Buddha of Limitless Light. AnuttarayogatantraThe highest of the four levels of _ Diamond Way teachings. ArhatOne who has "conquered the enemy", that is, "the emotions and ignorance that keep one locked in Samsara". The Arhat represents the _ Small Way ideal, one who has experienced the cessation of suffering. AsuraDemi-Gods of the desire-realm are called Asuras. Avalokiteshvara_ Loving Eyes B

BardoLiterally, "between two". In general, any interval, "a between". Six bardos are usually spoken of in the _ Diamond Way teachings: The Death Process. The interval from the moment when the individual begins to die until the moment when the separation of the mind and body takes place. The Cho Nyi Bardo. The interval of the ultimate nature of phenomena (the Dharmadata), when the mind is plunged into its own nature. The first phase of the after-death experience. The Bardo of Becoming. The interval in which the mind moves towards rebirth. The Bardo between Birth and Death. Ordinary waking consciousness during the present lifetime. Dream. The dream state we experience in sleep. Meditative Concentration. The state of meditative stability.

In the west "bardo" is usually referred to only the first three of these, that is, the states between death and rebirth. These states are no more and no less illusory than dreams and ordinary waking consciousness. Bardo Meditation_ Intermediate State MeditationBearer of Black Coat [Tib. Bernagchen] Main protector of the Karma Kagyu lineage. BeadsBeads are used to count _ Mantras. A _ Mala consist of 108 Beads. BellPaired with the vajra the bell represents wisdom, and as wisdom and method are an undivided unity so the _ Dorje and bell are never parted or employed separately. Its base must be round, above which is a vase surmounted by the face of Prajnaparamita. Above these are a lotus, a moon disc and finally a vajra. The hollow of the bell symbolizes the wisdom recognizing emptiness. The clapper represents the sound of emptiness. The vase represents the vase containing the nectar of accomplishment. Bernagchen_ Bearer of Black Coat BhumiLiterally "ground". One of the ten stages of realization and activity through which a _ Bodhisattva progresses towards _ Enlightenment. The 10 bhumis are: The Supremely joyful The Stainless The Illuminating The Radiant Very Difficult to Train For The Manifesting The Far Going The Unwavering Excellent Intelligence Cloud of Dharma

Black Coat_ Bearer of Black Coat Black CrownAttribute of the _ Karmapa. Signifying the power to help all beings, the female Buddhas bestowed this energyfield on Karmapa at his enlightenment several thousand years ago. It is constantly above his head. The replica shown at ceremonies has the power to open the subconscious of those present and permits the Karmapa to exchange his limitless space-awareness for beings' inhibitions and pain. It is a means for gaining liberation through seeing which only a Karmapa can use. Bodhgaya[Lit. Dorje Seat] Now a village in north India. The first Buddhas of each Dharma-period manifest full enlightenment there. Bodhicitta_ Enlightened Mind BodhisattvaOne who has taken the great vow to rescue all beings from suffering and guide them to enlightenment. Bodhisattva VowThe vow to maintain the enlightened view at all times. The vow is given in the presence of _ Bodhisattva and is repeated as often as possible. Bond[Tib. Damtsig, Skt. Samaya] The basis for the rapid psychological growth in Diamond Way Buddhism. Through the unbroken connection to teacher, meditation forms and co-disciples, students quickly manifest their potential. Especially the bond to one's first teacher is very important. Buddha[Tib. Sangye] The name denotes a state of mind. "Sang" means "perfectly purified" of all obscurations. "Gye" means "perfect unfoldment" of all qualities and wisdom. Buddha aspects[Tib. Yidam] The great richness of enlightened mind expresses itself in countless forms of energy and light. By identifying with them in meditation and daily life they rapidly awaken our innate Buddha-nature. Buddha Dharma CenterDuring his teachings in the West _ Lopon Tsechu Rinpoche gained more and more western students, which visit him from time to time. To accommodate them and his local students Lopon Tsechu Rinpoche founded the Buddha Dharma Center. It is a place where students can get in contact with _ Mahayana-Buddhism. This goes for lay and ordained-people as well. _ [more]. BuddhismThe teachings of the historical _ Buddha, Siddharta Gautama, are the basis of what is called `Buddhism'. Buddhism can be subdivided into _ Small Way, _ Great Way and _ Diamond Way. Buddha energies_ Buddha aspects Buddha of Limitless Light[Tib. pame, Skr. Amitabha] His mental realm is the pure land of highest bliss. C

CalendarThe Tibetan calendar is divided into major cycles of sixty years duration. These sixty-year cycles are themselves divided into five minor twelve-year cycles, each year of which is identified by the name of an animal. Rabbit Dragon Snake Horse Sheep Monkey Bird Dog Pig Mouse Ox Tiger

Two consecutive years are paired with one of the five elements. As there are: Fire Earth Iron Water Wood

So one gets i.e. a Earth Dragon Year, followed by a Earth Snake Year, followed by a Iron Horse Year and so on. After 60 years the combinations are repeated and the cycle is closed. The calendar was introduced in 1027 starting with the Fire Rabbit Year. The 16th cycle ended 1986 with a Fire Tiger Year. Thus we're living in the 17th cycle. The Tibetan year is based on twelve lunar month and lasts 360 days. Because twelve lunar months consists of only 355 (or 354) days, 5 (or 6) days in the Tibetan Year must be left out. Also, in order to avoid an unlucky day, an auspicious date may happen twice. This makes it not even easy to transform a date from the Western Calendar into a date of the Tibetan Calendar and vice versa. To keep pace with the solar year (365.25 days)every 3 years a leap month is added. There is an intelligent calculation which month will be the leap month. This certain month is simply repeated. In 1997 the fifth month of the Fire Ox Year was repeated. Due to the leap month the New Year's Day (Losar) of the Tibetan Calendar moves between February and March. The month starts with the new crescent and full moon is on the 15th. Chagya Chenpo_ Mahamudra Chakrasamvara_ Highest Joy Changchub Dorje[1703-1732] The twelfth Karmapa, Changchub Dorje was born at Chile Chakhor in Derge province in east Tibet. Shamarpa heard talk of the doings of a remarkable child, and sent a party to investigate. His envoys brought the child to Karma Gon, one of Karmapa's principal monasteries, where he met Shamarpa Paichen Chokyi Dondrub. The two were to spend the rest of their lives together, travelling and teaching in Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan, India and China. Only one day separated their deaths. Both gave Kagyu transmission to the eighth Situpa, and named him lineage holder. Chang Chub Kyi Sem_ Enlightened Mind Channa Dorje_ Diamond-holder Power Buddha Chenrezi_ Loving Eyes Cho_ Dharma Chodrag Gyamtso[1454 - 1506] The seventh Karmapa, Chodrag Gyamtso, was from Kyilha in Northern Tibet. Wiping his face immediately after birth, he is reported to have said "AH", the Sanskrit syllable symbolising the ultimate nature of reality. The nearby Nyewo Ngarteng Monastery was headed by one Cho Paljor, a student of the sixth Karmapa, who had a dream that his teacher had taken rebirth at Kyilha. He searched, and found the week-old child. The baby immediately recognised the possessions of the sixth Karmapa, and placed his hands in blessing on Cho Paljor's head. Seven weeks later, Chodrag Gyamtso was brought to Arik Thang, where Tongwa Donden had taught, and where there was a vast seat, like a throne, made of stone slabs. He blessed the ten thousand who had come to welcome him. At four, he was given a series of empowerments by Goshir Paljor Dondrup, and at eight, at Karma Gon, he was given the Kagyu teachings from Bengar Jam