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Buddhism Glossary

Buddhism GlossaryArhat or Arahat
Someone who has achieved enlightenment.

A term for any person who lives without material luxuries, often for religious reasons.

Fully ordained Buddhist monk.

Fully ordained Buddhist nun.

A Sanskrit word meaning enlightenment. The Bodhi tree is a species of fig said to be the tree under which the Buddha achieved enlightenment.

An enlightened person who has chosen to postpone nirvana in order to help others become enlightened.

A title meaning Awakened or Enlightened One.

Dalai Lama (Tibetan)
Spiritual and temporal leader of the Tibetan people.

Universal law; ultimate truth, the teachings of the Buddha.

Eightfold Path
The Noble Eightfold Path; the way of life taught by the Buddha.

A goal of Buddhism: a state in which the practitioner has no desire or suffering.

Four Noble Truths
The four principles encapsulating Buddha's teachings.

The sum of a person's actions in all their lifetimes (see Reincarnation): positive or negative actions are believed to affect the person's future in a positive or negative way.

A circular design representing the universe, sometimes used in meditation.

It is a Buddhist practice that involves emptying the mind, used for relaxation or religious contemplation.

Middle Way
A philosophy of moderation taught by the Buddha, avoiding excessive luxury and extreme asceticism; another name for the Eightfold Path.

The state of enlightenment; the term is also used outside Buddhism to mean a state of harmony and blessedness.

Some forms of Buddhism believe that after death a person's soul is reborn on earth in a different body, which may be human or another creature depending on the person's karma (see Karma).

Trainee Buddhist monk.

A type of meditation used to make the mind calmer.

The worldwide community of Buddhist monks or nuns; can be used generally to mean any group of Buddhists.

Siddhartha Gautama
The personal name of the historical Buddha.

A dome-shaped monument that contains relics of the Buddha. It has been named after a Sanskrit word for the crown of the head.

Three aspects of Buddhahood as taught by the Mahayana School.

A type of meditation used to achieve insight.

A Buddhist tradition of searching for inner truth.

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