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The Buddhist Archives of Dr. Alexander Berzin

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Home > Glossary > Glossary English Terms

English Glossary of Buddhist Terms

This glossary is only a partial list of technical terms found on the pages of the website. From time to time, as work progresses on the glossary project, new terms will be added to the list. Sanskrit equivalents for Tibetan terms have been provided only for select terms and all diacritical marks for transliterated Sanskrit have been omitted, for ease of display on all browsers.

Choose one of the letters below to see the glossary entries that start with this letter:

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EnglishDefinitionTibetan / Sanskrit
wandering, mental

See: mental wandering

wandering being

A being that "wanders" from one uncontrollably recurring rebirth to the next; a being caught in samsara. Synonymous with "limited being" (sentient being).

J. Hopkins' translation: "transmigrator."

Tib: 'gro-ba
Skt: gamin
wavering, indecisive

See: indecisive wavering

way of cognitively taking an object

Also called: way of taking an object

J. Hopkins' translation: "mode of apprehension{N}."

Tib: 'dzin-stangs
ways of being aware of something

One of the three kinds of nonstatic phenomena -- all types of mental activity cognizing an object.

J. Hopkins' translation: "consciousness."

Tib: shes-pa
what is supported

See: something that is supported by something else

what supports

See: something that supports something else

wholehearted commitment to a spiritual mentor

See: relating to a spiritual mentor in a healthy manner

winds of karma

In the Kalachakra system, the subtle energy-winds that carry the impulses of karma -- either the karmic impulses that draw one into actions or the karmic impulses with which one carries out physical or verbal actions.

Tib: las-kyi rlung
without a referent aim

A state of mind, such as immeasurable compassion, that lacks focus on the three circles ('khor-gsum) involved -- the action itself (in the case of compassion, wishing all beings to be free from suffering), the object, and the agent -- existing in an impossible way. Also translated as: unaimed.

J. Hopkins' translation: "unobservability; boundlessness."

Tib: dmigs-med
words, permitted

See: permitted words


See: mundane

would-be divine

A class of limited beings characerized by extreme jealousy toward the divine beings, with whom they continually fight. Also translated as "quasi-divine beings," "anti-gods," or simply as "asuras."

J. Hopkins' translation: "demigod."

Tib: lha ma-yin
Skt: asura
wrong livelihood

A dishonest means of earning a livelihood or procuring offerings.

Tib: log-'tsho
wrong view

See: distorted outlook

wrong views, sixty-two

See: sixty-two wrong views

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