This glossary contains an alphabetical list of Buddhist terms that you may find on this website. Many of the terms now include phoneticized Sanskrit (Skt) as well as two forms of Tibetan—the phonetic version (Tib), which is a guide to pronunciation, and transliteration using the Wylie method (Wyl). Search for the term you want by entering it in the search box or browse through the listing by clicking on the letters below.
Glossary terms for "S"
A Highest Yoga Tantra practice where the practitioner goes to sleep visualizing themselves as the guru-deity in the mandala in order to make it easier to attain the clear light mind. In the generation stage, without the realization of emptiness, this is called "with fabrication" or "with sign"; in the completion stage, with a realization of emptiness, this is called "without fabrication" or "without sign." See also waking yoga.
The bi-monthly practice by ordained Sangha of purifying broken vows by confession in front of other Sangha members.
The area in north-eastern Nepal, bordering Tibet, where Lama Zopa Rinpoche was born; populated by the Sherpas.
Geshe Sopa was an eminent Buddhist scholar based at Deer Park in Wisconsin, USA. He is a guru of both Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
The six internal sources (of consciousness) are the eye, ear, nose, tongue, body and mental sense powers; the six external sources (of consciousness or fields of consciousness) are the form source, sound source, odor source, taste source, object-of-touch source and phenomenon source.
The sixth of the seven points of cause and effect technique for developing bodhicitta, where the practitioner takes on the responsibility to lead all sentient beings to enlightenment by him- or herself. This is the final step before actually attaining bodhicitta.
Beings not usually visible to ordinary people; can belong to the hungry ghost or god realms; can be beneficent as well as harmful.
The ancient kingdom of the Kosalas now situated in modern Uttar Pradesh, India. It is the site of the Jeta Grove, where the Buddha would spend the rainy season in retreat and where many ruins from that time have been excavated.
Buddhist reliquary objects ranging in size from huge to a few inches in height and representing the enlightened mind. Also known as chorten.
The main character in the Gandavyuha Sutra, the last chapter of the Avatamsaka (Flower Ornament) Sutra. Sudhana is a youth whose search for enlightenment takes him on a journey to 53 spiritual teachers; he is used as an example of perfect guru devotion.
The pure realm of the Buddha Amitabha. Literally Land of Bliss, it is located in the western direction.
A tantric practice where tsampa is burned and offered to the spirits.
Another term for deva or god.
A discourse of the Buddha recognized as a canonical text.
The Sutra Vehicle, another name for Bodhisattvayana or Paramitayana; the non-tantric path that encompasses both Hinayana practices such as the thirty-seven wings of enlightenment and Mahayana practices such as the six perfections, in order to gather the two accumulations of merit and wisdom, the respective causes of the rupakaya and the dharmakaya, hence its other name, the causal vehicle.
The Middle Way Autonomy School, a sub-school of the Middle Way school of Buddhist philosophy. According to Tibetan scholarly tradition, the school of Madhyamaka philosophy that (a) stresses syllogistic reasoning rather than the use of reductio ad absurdum (prasanga) in establishing the nature of dharmas as emptiness and (b) asserts that dharmas possess inherent defining characteristics (svalaksana), at least conventionally. The school is subdivided into Sautrantika Svatantrika Madhyamaka (represented by Bhavaviveka and Jnanagarbha) and Yogachara Svatantrika Madhyamaka (represented by Santarakshita and Kamalasila). (See The Crystal Mirror of Philosophical Systems, p. 510.) See also Madhyamaka and Prasangika Madhyamaka.
Also called Swayambhunath; the ancient stupa complex in Kathmandu Valley, west of the city.