This glossary contains an alphabetical list of Buddhist terms that you may find on this website. The glossary includes English, Sanskrit and Tibetan terms. The list of terms is expanding and new listings are added regularly. Search for the term you want by entering it in the search box, or browse through the listing by clicking on the letters below.

A samsaric being in the realms of suras, asuras or humans.

A tantric deity; a wrathful form of Avalokiteshvara.

A Hinayana practitioner who strives for nirvana on the basis of listening to teachings from a teacher. Cf. solitary realizer.

The shortest and most recited of the Prajnaparamita Sutras (Skt), literally, “perfection of wisdom,” the teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha in which the wisdom of emptiness and the path of the bodhisattva are set forth.

The highest of the god realm abodes in Buddhist cosmology; it is atop Mount Meru and ruled by Indra.

The samsaric realm with the greatest suffering. There are eight hot hells, eight cold hells and four neighboring hells.

Also called “mistaken wrong views,” one of the five afflicted views that are part of the root afflictions. Heresy is a deluded intelligence that rejects the existence of something that exists, such as karma, reincarnation, the Three Jewels and so forth, and ascribes existence to that which is nonexistent. It is also holding incorrect views about the guru.

Male meditational deity from the mother tantra class of Highest Yoga Tantra. He is the principal deity connected with the Heruka Vajrasattva practice and was Lama Yeshe's yi-dam.

The highest of the three levels of practice or scopes, the higher capable being has the goal of full enlightenment. See also lower and middle capable being and three levels of practice.

The higher realms comprise the more fortunate rebirths as a human, god or demi-god. See also the six realms.

The fourth and supreme division of tantric practice, sometimes called Maha-anuttara Yoga Tantra. It consists of the generation and completion stages. Through this practice, one can attain full enlightenment within one lifetime. See also the four classes of tantra.

Literally, Small, or Lesser, Vehicle. It is one of the two general divisions of Buddhism. Hinayana practitioners' motivation for following the Dharma path is principally their intense wish for personal liberation from conditioned existence, or samsara. Two types of Hinayana practitioner are identified: hearers and solitary realizers. Cf Mahayana; see also Theravada.

The thirty-two holy signs and eighty exemplifications are unique physical characteristics of a buddha.

An alternate title for the more common (untranslated) Ganden Lha Gyäma or Lama Tsongkhapa Guru Yoga. Note: Land of Joy, Ganden (Tib)and Tushita (Skt) are synonymous.