Abhidharma: Analysis or discernment of things in general (dharma); one of the three divisions of Buddhist scriptures; discourses as distinguished from the Buddha’s teachings (sutras) and rules of conducts (vinaya); discourses in general.
Abhidharma master: A Buddhist master engaged in investigation and discernment of existing things and the Buddha’s teachings.
Abhilasa: Pure aspiration and readiness for action to achieve some Buddhist objective; one of the three functions of ‘faith’ (shraddha).
Abhiseka ritual: The ritual of ‘sprinkling (water) on the head'; a ceremony in esoteric Buddhism for conferring a certain mystic teaching.
Accommodated Body: One of the three bodies of a Buddha; a body manifested in the form of the beings to be saved by the Buddha; Sk. nirmanakaya.
Act of Right Assurance: The act which ensures one’s birth in the Pure Land; refers to the Nembutsu originating from the Primal Vow and supported by the Other-Power; the fourth of the Five Right Acts established by Shan-tao for attaining birth in the Pure Land.
Adamantine Mountain: See Encircling Adamantine Mountain.
Aggregates: see five aggregates.
Ajatashatru: ‘Unborn enemy’ or ‘having no enemy'; the son of King Bimbisara of Magadha; incited by Devadatta, he usurped the throne and imprisoned his parents. Later, he repented of his evil acts before Shakyamuni and became his patron.
Ajita: ‘Unconquerable'; n. of a bodhisattva, identified with Maitreya.
Alaya: ‘Storage'; the name of the eighth consciousness which stores all the potentials and is attached to with a false concept of ‘ego’ by the seventh consciousness; this is the base of one’s physical existence and environmental manifestations.
All-embracing Mind: Amida’s Mind which embraces all living beings and seeks to emancipate them from the bondage of karma and suffering.
All-knowing wisdom: The wisdom of knowing all things inside and out; the wisdom of clearly discerning everything.
Amida: The central Buddha in Pure Land Buddhism; a Buddha of infinite life and light, who dwells in his Pure Land in the west, a billion Buddha-lands away from here. He is known in Sanskrit as Amitabha and Amitayus.
Amida Meditation: Meditation on Amida Buddha; concentration on Amida through which one visualizes him.
Amida-Samadhi: The Samadhi in which one attains unity with Amida; Shakyamuni entered this Samadhi before expounding the Larger Sutra.
Amidabutsu: Amida Buddha.
Amida Sutra: One of the three Pure Land sutras, also known as the Smaller Sukhavativyuha Sutra or, simply, Smaller Sutra; this sutra describes glorious manifestations of Amida and his Pure Land and urges us to take refuge in him.
Amida’s call: Amida’s compassionate working to awaken us from delusion; it is expressed in his Vows, especially the Eighteenth Vow; his Name “Namu amida butsu” is itself his heart’s cry to urge us to take refuge in him and dwell securely in his embracement.
Amida’s Dharma: The law of salvation which Amida has made available for us; originating from the Primal Vow, it works to deliver us from the karmic bondage and leads us to the Pure Land.
Amita: ‘Immeasurable, infinite'; corresponds to the Japanese ‘Amida.’ As the name of the Buddha presiding in the Land of Utmost Bliss, Amita is interpreted as an abbreviation of ‘Amitabha’ and ‘Amitayus.’
Amitabha: Infinite light; one of the two Sanskrit names of Amida; he became a Buddha of infinite light as promised in his Twelfth Vow.
Amitayus: Infinite life; one of the two Sanskrit names of Amida; he became a Buddha of infinite life as promised in his Thirteenth Vow.
Ananda: ‘Happiness, joy'; a cousin of the Buddha and one of his ten great disciples. After he entered the Buddha’s order, he constantly attended on him for more than 20 years and committed all his sermons to memory; hence, renowned as the first and foremost in hearing and remembering those sermons. After the Buddha’s death, Ananda recited those sermons, which were later compiled as a collection of sutras.
Anathapindada: ‘Giver of food to the poor'; refers to Sudatta, a wealthy man of Shravasti, who purchased a garden from Prince Jeta and built in it a monastery for the Buddha.
Anglimala: Lit. ‘finger-wreath'; at first followed a wrong teaching and vowed that he would kill a thousand people and make a wreath with their fingers. When he attempted to kill his own mother to make the thousandth person, the Buddha stopped this and converted him to Buddhism. He then practiced the Way diligently and finally attained the Arhatship.
Aniruddha: ‘Unobstructed'; one of the ten great disciples of the Buddha, renowned for his divine sight.
Anjin: Peace of mind, mind at peace, settled mind'; used as an equivalent of shinjin, or Faith given to the devotee by Amida.
Anjin rondai: Points of Faith.
Annyo: ‘Peace and provision'; another name of Amida’s Pure Land.
Anutpattika-dharma-ksanti: Insight into the non-arising of all things; the higher spiritual awakening in which one recognizes that nothing really arises or perishes.
Aranya: A quiet place for monks'; habitation for practicing the Way, not very far from towns, such as forest or field. Living in aranya is one of the twelve dhuta rules.
Arhat: ‘Worthy of offering'; 1. one of the ten epithets of the Buddha and 2. a Buddhist sage who has completely destroyed his evil passions and attained Nirvana, i.e., emancipation from the cycles of birth and death; the highest of the four Hinayana sages.
Arhatship: The highest of the four stages of Hinayana sages.
Aryadeva: A native of south India in the 3rd century; became a disciple of Nagarjuna and under his guidance realized the principle of voidness; he wrote important Madhyamika works, including his Discourse in a Hundred Verses, and is looked upon as one of founders of the Madhyamika School.
Asanga: A native of Gandhara in north India in the fourth century; Vasubandhu’s elder brother and one of the founders of the Yogacara School; he is said to have visited Tusita Heaven to receive the teaching from Maitreya; he composed important discourses on Yogacara philosophy and practice, including Discourse on Mahayana.
Ashvaghosa: An Indian monk and a great exponent of Mahayana in the 1st century; he composed the Buddha’s biography in verse and is also believed to be the author of a discourse on Mahayana, known as Awakening of Faith in the Mahayana, which mentions Amida’s Pure Land.
Ashvajit ‘Gaining horses'; one of the five earliest disciples of the Buddha.
Ashvattha tree: The Bodhi-tree under which Shakyamuni became a Buddha.
Asura: ‘Spiritual, incorporeal'; a kind of anti-god; originally a Hindu divinity. The asuras became evil spirits, constantly engaged in fighting with Indra’s army. In Buddhism, asuras are generally considered warlike and fearsome, but some of them converted to Buddhism and later became its protectors.
atman Self, selfhood; often identified as the permanent subjective entity, which is denied in Buddhism.
Auspicious Kalpa: The present cosmic period, in which a thousand Buddhas are believed to appear.
Auxiliary Acts: Shan-tao established Five Right Acts as the practice for attaining birth in the Pure Land; the fourth, i.e. recitation of the Nembutsu, is called the Act of Right Assurance and the remaining four are of secondary importance and are called Auxiliary Acts.
Avalokiteshvara: ‘Lord of Beholding'; one of the two bodhisattvas attending Amida; he represents Amida’s Great Compassion.
Avidya: ‘Ignorance'; basic ignorance; darkness of mind which hinders realization of reality; the first of the twelve causations.
Avici hell: The lowest part of hell where sinners suffer interminable pain.
Ayodhya: the name of an ancient country in central India where eminent Buddhist scholars, such as Asanga and Vasubandhu, spent part of their life; assumed to be the district where present Oudh is.
Bandits of the five sense-organs: The five sense-organs often cause hindrances to the practicing of the Way; hence, compared to bandits.
Basic ignorance: Spiritual darkness which lies at the basis of one’s existence.
Bendo miroku: Same as Maitreya.
Best-selected Primal Vow: Refers to Amida’s Forty-eight Vows which he chose out of many wishes when he was a bodhisattva; especially, the Eighteenth Vow in which the Nembutsu-Faith is presented as the cause of birth in the Pure Land.
Bettoshiki: Office of temple head.
Bhadrajit: ‘Gaining happiness'; one of the five earliest disciples of the Buddha.
Bhadrapala: Lit. ‘Gracious protector'; the foremost of the 16 lay bodhisattvas, to whom the Buddha addressed in the Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra.
Bhagavat: ‘Honorable One, Blessed One'; the World-Honored One; one of the ten epithets for a Buddha; see note 6 below.
Bhiksu A monk.
Bimbisara: ‘The core of Bimbi fruit?'; the fifth king of the Shaisnaga Dynasty in Magadha and a follower of the Buddha; in his late years, he was imprisoned by his son Ajatashatru and died in jail.
Birth-and-death: The cycle of birth and death; Samsara.
Birth on the highest level of the highest grade The highest mode of birth in the Pure Land of the nine grades distinguished in the Contemplation Sutra.
Black-bee Hill: The mountain where Nagarjuna is believed to have spent the latter part of his life.
Black hindrance: The darkest spiritual obscurity which hinders visualization of the setting sun.
Blind passions: mental functions which disturb and pollute the mind; in Shin Buddhism, all mental acts are considered evil passions which are the cause of the endless cycle of birth and death.
Bodhi: Enlightenment, the highest wisdom.
Bodhi-Mind: Aspiration for Enlightenment.
Bodhi-tree: The tree under which the Buddha attained Enlightenment; the Sanskrit name of this tree is pippala, also called ashvattha.
Bodhiruci: An Indian monk who went to China in 508 and produced translations of Buddhist scriptures, including Vasubandhu’s Discourse on the Pure Land; he is said to have given T’an-luan the Contemplation Sutra.
bodhisattva: ‘A being of enlightenment'; one who makes vows to attain enlightenment and to save suffering beings, and thus sets out on the long course of practice. One who has accomplished the bodhisattva practice is a Buddha; an enlightenment-being; a Buddha-to-be.
Bodhisattva ideal: The Mahayana ideal that one should strive to perform various acts of merits and cultivate wisdom in order to save suffering beings and attain Enlightenment.
Bodhisattva Path: The path to be followed by bodhisattvas whereby they benefit both themselves and other beings and realize Enlightenment; this path is fully explained in the Mahayana Buddhism.
Bodhisattva Phoenix: The name of high praise and respect given to T’an-luan by the king of Liang, Hsiao-yen.
Bodhisattva practice: Acts of merits to be performed by the bodhisattva for the attainment of Enlightenment; see Six Paramitas.
Bodhisattva Vehicle: The teaching for the bodhisattvas.
Bodhisattvahood: The state of a bodhisattva.
Body for the sake of beings: One of the two kinds of Buddha’s body, the other being Body of True Suchness; the body manifested by the Buddha for the sake of bodhisattvas and sentient beings.
Body of True Suchness: The essential body of the Buddha, which is identical with the ultimate reality, True Suchness.
bombu: An ordinary, unenlightened being; in Shin Buddhism, this term is used with deep awareness of one’s evil passions and inability to attain salvation by one’s own power.
Border Region of the Pure Land: Same as Transformed Land; the temporary abode for those who aspire to be born in the Pure Land but are still attached to their own power, and so unable to trust the Other-Power fully.
Born by transformation: The aspirants to the Pure Land who sincerely entrust themselves to Amitabha with clear cognition of his wisdom become fully enlightened as soon as they are born in the Pure Land; cf. embryonic state.
Boundless Light: One of the twelve epithets of Amida.
Brahma: Originally the creator god in Hinduism; in Buddhism, he is the lord of the First Dhyana Heaven in the world of form.
Brahma Heaven: The heaven in the world of form.
Brahma-net Sutra: A Mahayana sutra that explains, among other things, stages of bodhisattvas and precepts for them.
Brahma-king: The king of the Brahma Heaven in the world of form.
brahmin: A follower of Brahmanism.
Brahma-mani-gem: The wish-fulfilling ma n}i-gem possessed by Brahma.
Buddha: ‘An enlightened one'; one who has attained the highest wisdom and thus realized the ultimate reality. According to the Mahayana, a Buddha has three bodies: (1) Dharmakaya, the body of ultimate truth and reality, (2) Sambhogakaya, the glorious body of bliss as reward for his supreme merits, and (3) Nirmanakaya, the body of manifestation in human and other forms. ‘The Buddha,’ mentioned without further specification, refers to Gautama, the historical Buddha, commonly known as Shakyamuni. The Mahayana conceives of innumerable Buddhas dwelling in transcendental realms, called ‘Buddha-lands.’
Buddha of Accommodated Body: One of the three bodies of the Buddha; this body is manifested in response to the needs of the beings.
Buddha of Inconceivable Light: One of the names of Amida originating from his twelve lights.
Buddha of Infinite Life: Another name of Amida; Amitayus.
Buddha of Infinite Light and Life: Refers to Amida who has the most distinctive attributes, infinite light and life, as promised in his Twelfth and Thirteenth Vows.
Buddha of Recompensed Body: One of the three bodies of the Buddha which is manifested as the reward for his vows and practice of merits; as such, Amida displays his everlasting activities of salvation.
Buddha of transcendent Light: Refers to Amida.
Buddha of Unhindered Light: One of the names of Amida originating from his twelve lights.
Buddha of Unhindered Light Shining throughout the Ten Directions: The name of glorification for Amida first used by Vasubandhu in his Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land.
Buddha Vehicle: The Way of becoming a Buddha; the Buddha Path.
Buddha-Dharma: Teaching of the Buddha; the truth realized and revealed by the Buddha.
Buddha-garland Samadhi: The samadhi which Samantabhadra enters before preaching the Dharma.
Buddha-land: The field of the Buddha’s activity; the land which comes into existence as the reward for the Buddha’s vows and acts of merits.
Buddha-land of Peace and Bliss: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Buddha-Recollection Samadhi: The state of concentration in which one visualizes Amitabha; also, a concentrated practice of repeating his name whereby one attains unity with him.
Buddha’s children: Refers to Buddhists, especially bodhisattvas.
Buddhas’ Family: Same as Tathagatas’ Family.
Buddhabhadra: A monk from north India who came to China in 406 and produced translations of a number of scriptures, including the Garland Sutra; he is believed to have translated the Larger Sutra in collaboration with Pao-yu”n in 421.
Buddhahood: The state of the Buddha’s Enlightenment.
Buddhas of the ten directions: Buddhas dwelling the worlds of the ten directions, i.e. the four cardinal points, four intermediate directions, zenith and nadir.
Buddhist Path: The way of attaining Buddhahood, and also Buddha’s Enlightenment.
Cakravartin: ‘Wheel-turning Monarch'; the ideal king conceived in India who rules the world with the wheel (cakra), which crushes the enemy.
Ch’ang-an: The site of the capital in ancient China; present Xi’an.
Chapter on the Easy Practice: The 9th chapter of the Commentary on the Chapter Ten Stages of the Garland Sutra, written by Nagarjuna; in this work he presents recitation of the names of Buddhas and bodhisattvas as an easy and effective way of attaining the Stage of Non-retrogression. Cf. the editor’s translation, Igyohon.
Charioteer of Men: One of the ten epithets of the Buddha.
Cosmic fire: The fire said to occur at the end of the cosmic period of destruction; the fire destroys all the worlds up to the Brahma Heaven.
Chi-tsang of San-lun School: (549-623); a master of San-lun school, whose parents came from Parthia; he extensively lectured on Madhyamika literature and wrote commentaries on them, thereby consolidating the foundation of the San-lun school.
Chih-i: (538-97); popularly Master T’ien-t’ai; the third patriarch of the T’ien-t’ai school in China, who systematized the T’ien-t’ai teaching and is regarded as its founder; the author of many works, including the three-volume commentary on the Lotus Sutra compiled by his disciple.
Clear understanding of the one hundred dharmas: There are two interpretations: (1) clear understanding of the 100 principles of truth in the Stage of Joy and (2) wisdom of clearly discerning the 100 constituent elements of all that exists, as taught in the School of Consciousness-Only.
Cliff of Master Phoenix (Luan): The name of the place where T’an-luan lived.
Collection of Essential Passages Concerning Birth in the Pure Land: Ojoyoshu; the work of great celebration by Genshin, in which he presents various systems of Pure Land practice, both meditative and non-meditative, and concludes that the Nembutsu is the essential practice.
Collection of Passages Concerning Birth in the Land of Peace and Bliss An-le-chi: a work by Tao-ch’o expounding the Pure Land teaching based mainly on the Contemplation Sutra.
Collection of Passages Concerning the Nembutsu of the Best-Selected Primal Vow: Senjakushu or Senchakushu; a work written by Honen in 1198, in which he justifies the Nembutsu as the most effective method of salvation; the publication of this work marked the independence of the Jodo sect.
Commentary on the Chapter Ten Stages of the Garland Sutra: A work by Nagarjuna; the ninth chapter of this commentary, entitled “Path of Easy Practice,” is an important text in Pure Land tradition.
Commentary on the Contemplation Sutra: The four-fascicle commentary on the Contemplation Sutra by Shan-tao, which became the standard interpretation of the Pure Land thought and practice in China and Japan.
Commentary on the Discourse on the Pure Land: Wang-shen lun-chu; T’an-luan’s commentary on Vasubandhu’s Discourse on the Pure Land (cf. Jodoron), an important work that explains the fundamental ideas of Pure Land Buddhism; Shinran highly valued this work and derived from it the basic Shin teaching.
Commentary on the Prajnaparamita Sutra: A work by Nagarjuna that exhaustively presents various Mahayana thoughts while explaining terms and ideas of the Prajnaparamita Sutra.
Complete precepts of a monk or a nun: The precepts prescribed for a monk or a nun; there are 250 precepts for a monk to observe, and 348 for a nun.
Consciousness-Only: The Mahayana doctrine that explains all phenomena as manifestations of one’s consciousnesses, of which the eighth, Alaya, is the basic one; this doctrine was systematized by Vasubandhu and transmitted to China where it became known as Fa-hsiang (Hosso) school.
Contemplation Sutra: Abbr. of the Sutra on Visualization of the Buddha of Infinite Life; one of the three basic canons of Pure Land Buddhism; translated into Chinese by Kalayashas during 424-53; it explains the method of visualizing Amida, his two attendant bodhisattvas, and his Pure Land, and also the way of attaining birth there.
Cosmic body: Lit., ‘body of the Dharma-realm'; a Buddha’s body manifested in correspondence to the meditating mind of a sentient being; see dharma-realm body.
Cosmic Buddha: A popular epithet given to Vairocana because he embodies the ultimate reality of the universe.
Dana: An act of giving; charity; one of the Six Paramitas.
Day of abstinence: According to Nagarjuna’s own explanation, the days of abstinence are six days of the month, i.e., 8th, 14th, 15th, 23rd, 29th and 30th, and also 45 days following the winter solstice.
Death of the bodhisattva: Falling into the stages of a shravaka and a pratyekabuddha is so called, because the bodhisattvas who have fallen into them would be content with the nihilistic Nirvana and would not aspire to Buddhahood.
Decadent Dharma (age of): The last of the three Dharma-ages which lasts for ten thousand years; during this period, the Buddha-Dharma exists but no one can effectively practice the method of salvation by self-power and attain Enlightenment.
Deep faith (two aspects): One of the three aspects of faith presented in the Contemplation Sutra; Shan-tao interpreted deep faith as having two aspects: (1) deep awareness of oneself as full of evil passions and incapable of salvation and (2) absolute trust in Amida’s salvation.
Definitely assured of Enlightenment: When one reaches the First Stage, one is definitely assured of attaining Enlightenment; cf. Stage of Non-retrogression.
Definitely Assured Stage: The stage of spiritual attainment in which one becomes assured of reaching Enlightenment.
Dependent origination: The Buddhist truth that all things come into existence depending on each other; pratitya-samutpada.
Desire for Birth: One of the three aspects of the Other-Power Faith that appear in the Eighteenth Vow.
Deva: A divinity or god; a heavenly being. Devas, including Hindu gods, are believed to inhabit the heavens above the human realm, but are still unenlightened and bound to samsara (cycles of birth and death). Many such beings have already been converted to Buddhism and become its protectors.
Devadatta: ‘God-given'; a cousin of Shakyamuni and a follower of his teaching, he attempted to take over the leadership of the Buddhist order and even to kill the Buddha; incited Ajatashatru to kill his father and usurp the throne. Because of his grave crimes, he is said to have fallen into hell while still alive.
Dharma: (1) Truth, law; the Buddha’s teaching. (2) N. of a Buddha in the nadir. (3) An existent, thing, element, constituent, etc.; often used in plural; cf. insight into the non-arising of all dharmas.
Dharma-Body: Dharmakaya; the body of the ultimate truth and reality; the quintessential body of the Buddha..
Dharma Dana: Teaching the Dharma to others to remove their suffering, resolve their spiritual problems and lead them to Enlightenment.
Dharma-body: One of the three bodies of the Buddha; the body which is identical with the ultimate truth or reality; Sk. dharmakaya.
Dharma-body (two kinds of) According to T’an-luan, Buddhas and bodhisattvas have two kinds of Dharma-body.
Dharma-body of Dharma-nature: One of the two kinds of Dharma-body distinguished by T’an-luan; this is the essential reality-body of Buddhas and bodhisattvas; cf. dharmata-dharmakaya.
Dharma-body of Expediency: One of the two kinds of Dharma-body distinguished by T’an-luan; this is the body of manifestation for the sake of guiding sentient beings; cf. upaya-dharmakaya.
Dharma Prince: Refers to a Bodhisattva because he will become a Dharma King, i.e. Buddha; especially used as the honorific title for Manjushri.
Dharma-realm body: Tentatively translated as ‘cosmic body’. ‘Dharma-realm’ (dharma-dhatu; hokkai) has two usages: (1) The essence (dhatu) of all things (dharmas), a synonym of Dharma-nature or True Suchness and (2) the sphere of mental objects. T’an-luan interprets ‘dharma-realm’ as an object of the mind, such as an idea or image; it arises from the mind, just as a visual form arises as an object of the eye. In correspondence with the six sense-organs there are six kinds of object, of which ‘dharma-realm’ is one. As he explains next, just as the image of an object is seen reflected in the clear water, so the Buddha’s image is perceived by the meditating mind; thus the Buddha’s glorious body is inseparable from one’s meditating mind, and so the Buddha does not exist apart from one’s mind.
Dharma-nature: The essential nature of all that exists; same as True Suchness.
Dharma-store: The treasury of Dharma; a metaphorical expression of the boundless Dharma.
Dharmakara: The name of the bodhisattva who later became Amida; literally, Dharma-store.
Dharmata-dharmakaya: A reconstructed Sanskrit for the Chinese word ‘hossho hosshin’, which means ‘Dharma-body of Dharma-nature’.
Dhuta rules: The twelve rules of frugal living for Buddhist mendicants: 1. living in the forest or fields (aranya), 2. living on alms alone, 3. begging alms from house to house without discriminating between rich and poor, 4. eating food at only one place, 5. eating from only one vessel, 6. not eating after noon, 7. wearing only discarded clothes, 8. wearing only three robes, 9. living in a cemetery, 10. living at the foot of a tree, 11. living in the open air, and 12. sleeping in a sitting posture.
Dhyana Heaven: There are four Dhyana Heaven in the world of form where practicers of meditation (dhyana) are born.
Diamond Samadhi: The samadhi in which one attains freedom in penetrating everything.
Diamond Faith: Refers to the Other-Power Faith, shinjin, because it is as indestructible as diamond.
Diamond Mind: Same as Diamond Faith.
Diamond-like Mind: Same as Diamond Faith.
Difficult Practice: One of the two kinds of Buddhist practice distinguished by Nagarjuna, the other being Easy Practice; self-power practice is difficult to perform and less efficacious than recitation of the names of Buddhas and bodhisattvas, which is called Easy Practice.
Dipankara: ‘Making Light'; n. of a Buddha of the past.
Discourse on the Pure Land with Hymn of Birth: An important Pure Land work by Vasubandhu, which, together with T’an-luan’s commentary on it, supplied Shinran with the basic idea of the Other-Power teaching; cf. Discourse on the Pure Land.
Discourse on the Repository of Abhidharma Discussions: ‘Abhidharma-kosha’ in Sanskrit; a comprehensive treatise discussing the doctrines of Hinayana Buddhism composed by Vasubandhu.
Divine Phoenix: The title of respect given to T’an-luan by the king of Eastern Wei, Hsiao-ching T’i.
dogyo/dobo: Fellow believer.
Dragon Palace: A mythical place inhabited by dragons.
Dragon-Arjuna: The literal meaning of ‘Nagarjuna’.
Easy Practice: One of the two kinds of practice distinguished by Nagarjuna, the other being Difficult Practice; this refers to recitation of the names of Buddhas and bodhisattvas with sincere faith; this is easier and more efficacious than self-power practices.
Effortless spontaneity: The ultimate state of Enlightenment in which everything occurs in accord with truth and reality without effort; the nirvanic state to be attained in the Pure Land.
Eight abstinences: The eight precepts which a lay Buddhist should observe on fixed days of the month: (1) not killing living beings, (2) not stealing, (3) not having sexual intercourse, (4) not telling lies, (5) not drinking intoxicants, (6) not wearing bodily decoration, not using perfumes, not singing and dancing, and not going to see dances or plays, (7) not sleeping in a raised bed, and (8) not eating after noon.
Eight hells: Refers to the eight scorching hells; cf. Larger Sutra Mandala.
Eight levels of consciousnesses: According to the doctrine of Consciousness-Only school, we have the following eight consciousnesses: (1st-5th) five consciousnesses corresponding to the five sense perceptions, (6th) mental consciousness, the function of which is to discriminate objects, (7th) ego-consciousness, and (8th) Alaya-consciousness, which is the fundamental consciousness of one’s existence. 56.
Eight excellent qualities (the water of): The water of the ponds in the Land of Utmost Bliss possesses the following eight qualities: pure, cool, sweet, smooth, moistening, comforting, thirst-quenching, and nourishing.
Eight kinds of superhuman beings: The eight kinds of superhuman beings believed to be protectors of Buddhism: devas, dragons, yaksas, gandharvas, asuras, garudas, kimnaras, and mahoragas.
Eight qualities of tones: The eight superior qualities of the Buddha’s voice: (1) a pleasant voice, (2) a soft voice, (3) a harmonious voice, (4) a dignified and wise voice, (5) a masculine voice, (6) an unerring voice, (7) a deep and far-reaching voice, and (8) an inexhaustible voice
Eight samadhis of emancipation: The eight ways of meditation for removing various attachments: (1) removing passions by meditating on impurity of one’s body, (2) strengthening emancipation from passions by meditating on impurity of external objects, (3) removing passions by meditating on pure aspects of external objects, (4) removing attachment to material objects by meditating on boundless void, (5) removing attachment to void by meditating on boundless consciousness, (6) removing attachment to consciousness by meditating on non-existence, (7) removing attachment to non-existence by meditating on the state of neither thought nor non-thought, and (8) extinguishing all thoughts and perceptions and dwelling in the state of total extinction.
Eightfold Noble Path: The eight items of practice leading to Nirvana: right view, right thoughts, right speech, right acts, right living, right effort, right mindfulness, and right meditation.
Eighteenth Vow: The most important of all the forty-eight vows of Amida, in which he presents salvation through Nembutsu-Faith; cf. Forty-eight Vows.
Eighty secondary marks: The eighty subordinate physical characteristics attending the 32 major marks of the Buddha: (1) copper-colored nails, (2) soft and glossy nails, (3) highly curved nails, (4) round fingers, (5) tapering fingers, (6) strong fingers, (7) hidden veins, (8) veins without knots, (9) unexposed ankles, (10) both feet identical, (11) steps like a lion’s, (12) steps like an elephant’s, (13) steps like a swan’s, (14) steps like a bull’s, (15) turning the head clockwise to look back, (16) beautiful manner of walking, (17) upright walking, (18) well-framed limbs, (19) immaculate limbs, (20) well-balanced limbs, (21) clean limbs, (22) soft limbs, (23) strong limbs, (24) complete male organ, (25) broad, elegant and round limbs, (26) walking with an even step, (27) delicate limbs, (28) unimpaired limbs, (29) symmetrical and majestic body, (30) well-joined limbs, (31) well-proportioned limbs and members, (32) pure and unobscured eye-sight, (33) rounded abdomen, (34) spotless abdomen, (35) unfurrowed abdomen, (36) convex abdomen, (37) deep-seated navel, (38) right-turning navel, (39) readiness to help others equally, (40) noble conduct, (41) body without freckles, (42) hands as soft as cotton, (43) brilliant lines on the hand, (44) deep lines on the hand, (45) unbroken lines on the hand, (46) face not too long, (47) lips red like the Bimba (=Coccina indica) fruit, (48) soft tongue, (49) thin tongue, (50) red tongue, (51) voice like an elephant’s roar and like thunder, (52) sweet and pleasant voice, (53) perfect teeth, (54) sharp teeth, (55) white teeth, (56) even teeth, (57) tapering teeth, (58) high nose, (59) nose not too long, (60) pure eyes, (61) broad eyes, (62) beautiful eyebrows, (63) eyes like the petal of a blue Kuvalaya (=Nymphaea Lotus), (64) blue-black eyebrows, (65) soft eyebrows, (66) regular eyebrows, (67) lustrous eyebrows, (68) large ears, (69) both ears identical, (70) healthy ears, (71) forehead well fitted to the face, (72) broad forehead, (73) well-developed head, (74) blue-black hair, (75) closely growing hair, (76) soft hair, (77) undishevelled hair, (78) smooth and even hair, (79) fragrant hair, and (80) palms and soles marked with Svastika and other auspicious signs.
Eiku: A great Tendai monk who lived on Mt. Hiei and one of Honen’s teachers; he died in 1179.
Eko: ‘Merit-transference'; Amida transfers his merit to us through the Name; in Shinran’s system of salvation, Amida’s merit-transference works in two directions: (1) for our birth in the Pure Land and attain Enlightenment (oso) and (2) for our returning to the world of Samsara to save other beings (genso).
Eleventh Vow: The Vow of Unfailing Attainment of Nirvana; this vow promises that those born in the Pure Land dwell in the Stage of Right Assurance and unfailingly reach Nirvana; in Shinran’s interpretation, those who attain Faith of the Other-Power dwell in the Stage of Right Assurance in this life and definitely reach Nirvana in the Pure Land; cf. Forty-eight Vows.
Embryonic state: The aspirants to the Pure Land who cultivate merits by doing good acts but fail to awake to the Buddha’s wisdom are, metaphorically, born within lotus-flowers, where they stay for 500 years without being able to see or hear the true Buddha, Dharma and Sangha; opposed to ‘born by transformation’.
Encircling Adamantine Mountains: The outermost mountain-range made of iron which encircles a world-system; cf. Mount Sumeru.
Enlightened One: Refers to a Buddha.
Enlightenment: Bodhi in Skt.; the final goal of Buddhism; the state of fully developed wisdom.
Enryakuji Temple: The head temple of the Tendai sect on Mt. Hiei; its origin dates back to 785, when Saicho built a hut there to study and practice Buddhism.
Eranda A foul-smelling tree.
Essential Meanings of the Contemplation Sutra: The first fascicle of the four-fascicle commentary on the Contemplation Sutra by Shan-tao.
Eternal bliss of Dharma-nature: The highest spiritual state attending realization of the ultimate reality.
Evil paths: The three evil realms: hell and the realm of hungry spirits and that of animals; cf. three evil realms.
Exalted Being: Mahasattva; used as a synonym of ‘bodhisattva’.
‘existence’ and ‘non-existence': The two extreme views regarding the ultimate nature of things, i.e. the view that there is some eternally abiding substance in things and the view that there is no such substance in them; Nagarjuna denied those dichotomous views and presented the truth of the Middle Path.
Extinct Dharma (age of): The period following the three Dharma-ages; in this period all the Buddhist teachings cease to exist to guide people to Enlightenment.
Extinction: Refers to Nirvana, for it is the state free of evil passions.
Fa-chao: ‘Hossho’ in Japanese; -773; one of the prominent Chinese Pure Land masters. He first went up Mt. Lu, where he practiced the Nembutsu Samadhi, and later, in 766, he saw Amida in a vision and learned from him the method of chanting the Nembutsu in five movements; he has been regarded as an incarnation of Shan-tao.
Faith of the Universal Vow: The Other-Power Faith promised in the Eighteenth Vow.
Faith of the Other-Power: Faith awakened by the Other-Power; Amida’s Mind transferred to us.
Fearlessness: Refers to the four forms of fearlessness in preaching the Dharma. Those attributed to a Buddha are: (1) fearlessness in asserting that he has attained the perfect Enlightenment, (2) fearlessness in asserting that he has destroyed all defilements, (3) fearlessness in pointing out evil passions of sentient beings, and (4) fearlessness in expounding the method of emancipation.
Fen-chou: The name of the place in Shan-his Province where T’an-luan lived.
Fidere: A Latin word meaning ‘to trust’, from which the word ‘faith’ is derived.
Fire-element: One of the five constituent elements of one’s existence.
Fire-ice analogy: An analogy used by T’an-luan to show that even if one has an attached view about the mode of life in the Pure Land, it will be spontaneously removed when one is born there, just as a fire made on ice is spontaneously extinguished by the water produced.
First fruit: The first of the four stages of sainthood in Hinayana; Sk. srota-apatti-phala, ‘the fruit of entering the stream (of the Dharma)'; one attains this stage by destroying various wrong views.
First, second and third insights into the nature of dharmas: See three insights (L7).
Five acts of merit for attaining Non-retrogression: 1. not perceiving one’s own self, 2. not perceiving sentient beings, 3. not expounding the Dharma with discriminative views, 4. not perceiving Bodhi, and 5. not perceiving Buddhas with their physical characteristics.
Five aggregates: The five constituent elements of all existences; the five skandhas; they are: matter, perception, conception, volition, and consciousness.
Five burnings: The sufferings one receives in the next life as the retribution from the five evils.
five causal practices The Five Mindful Practices that are performed in this world are the cause of the five results in the Pure Land.
Five defilements: The five signs of corruption and defilement said to mark the cosmic period in which man’s life-span is less than 20,000 years: (1) defilement of kalpa, because famines, plagues, and wars arise during this period, (2) defilement of views, because wrong views arise, (3) defilement by evil passions, because they become intense, (4) defilement of sentient beings, because they reject the morality and the law of causation, or because they are physically and mentally weak and so suffer greatly, and (5) defilement of life, because man’s life-span is short. The five defilements become serious when man’s life-span decreases to less than a hundred years.
Five different paths of Samsara: The five states of existence in Samsara, i.e. hell and the realms of hungry spirits, animals, men and heavenly beings.
Five elements: The five constituent elements of one’s existence: earth, water, fire, wind and space.
Five evil realms: The five states of existence in samsara: hell and the realms of hungry spirits, animals, humans and devas.
Five five-hundred-year periods: According to the Great Collection Sutra, the history of Buddhism after the Buddha’s death is divided into five 500-year periods, each characterized by a particular feature: (1) in the first period Buddhist practicers attain emancipation, (2) in the second, they steadfastly practice meditation, (3) in the third, they eagerly listen to the Buddhist teaching, (4) in the fourth, they are bent on building temples, and (5) in the fifth, they are engaged in doctrinal disputes.
Five good deeds: There are two interpretations: (1) observance of the five precepts for lay Buddhists, i.e. not killing, not stealing, not committing adultery, not telling lies, and not using intoxicants, and (2) the five constant virtues of Confucianism, i.e. humanity, righteousness, propriety, knowledge, and sincerity.
Five gravest offenses: The five gravest evil acts; they are: killing one’s father, killing one’s mother, killing an arhat, causing the Buddha’s body to bleed, and causing disunity in the Buddhist order; one who has committed any of those is destined to hell to suffer immeasurable pain for many aeons.
Five kinds of suffering: (1) The pain accompanying one’s birth, (2) the pain of getting old, (3) the pain of illness, (4) the pain of death, and (5) the pain of separation from those one loves (M8).
Five Mindful Practices: The Yogacara-Pure Land system of practice established by Vasubandhu for the attainment of birth in the Pure Land and final Enlightenment; they are: (1) worshiping Amida, (2) praising his merit and virtue, (3) aspiring for birth in the Pure Land, (4) contemplation of Amida, his Pure Land and bodhisattvas there, and (5) merit-transference.
five powers The five powers obtained by the practice of the five roots of goodness: (1) firm faith in the Buddha and Dharma, (2) great effort, (3) mindfulness, (4) deep concentration, and (5) deep wisdom.
Five precepts: The five precepts for laymen and laywomen; 1. not killing, 2. not stealing, 3. not committing adultery, 4. not telling lies, and 5. not drinking intoxicants.
Five resultant states: The five results of the Five Mindful Practices: 1. gate of approach, 2. gate of great assemblage, 3. gate of residence, 4. gate of chamber, and 5. gate of playing ground.
Five Right Acts: The Pure Land system of practice established by Shan-tao for attaining birth in the Pure Land; they are: (1) chanting sutras, (2) meditating on Amida and his Pure Land, (3) worshiping Amida, (4) reciting the Nembutsu, and (5) praising Amida’s virtue. The fourth is called Act of Right Assurance, and the remaining four are called Auxiliary Acts.
Five roots of goodness: (1) Faith in the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha, (2) efforts to practice good, (3) mindfulness of the Buddha-Dharma, (4) concentration, and (5) insight into the true nature of existence.
Five rules for reaching Bodhi without retrogression: 1. the mind of equanimity towards sentient beings, 2. not envying others’ possessions, 3. not criticizing preachers for errors, 4. joyful faith in the Dharma, and 5. not seeking others’ respect.
Five sense-organs: Eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and the whole body treated as a tactile organ.
Five sufferings: The sufferings one receives in this life as the retribution for the five evils.
Five supernatural powers: The five transcendent powers of a Buddha, bodhisattva or arhat: (1) the ability to go anywhere at will and to transform oneself or objects at will, (2) the ability to see anything at any distance, (3) the ability to hear any sound at any distance, (4) the ability to know others’ thoughts, and (5) the ability to know the former lives of oneself and others.
Fivefold three thoughts toward beggars: 1. think that these beggars are good teachers, wish that they will be wealthy when reborn, and think that they assist in your attainment of Bodhi; 2. think of removing your stinginess, think of abandoning everything, and think of seeking all wisdoms; 3. think of following the Tathagata’s teaching, not seeking reward, and think of subduing maras; 4. think that they are your relatives, resolve not to discard the four rules of embracing beings, and seek to avoid wrongdoing and abide by righteousness; and 5. think of removing desires, of cultivating compassion, and developing wisdom. The last three thoughts are the most important in this discourse.
Flood at the end of the period of cosmic change: One of the three calamities which occurs at the end of the world; first, seven suns appear in the sky and burn out the world, then the whole world is flooded with water, and finally, everything in the world is blown away by strong winds.
Flower of Enlightenment: Refers to Amida’s Enlightenment.
Flowers in the sky: Illusory images seen by those with eye-diseases; metaphorically, all that are perceived and conceived by unenlightened people are delusory phantoms like flowers in the sky.
Formlessness: Absence of characteristic features of existences.
Four bases of virtue: Four bases of virtue: 1. seeking truth, 2. giving gifts. 3.destroying karmic evils, and 4. cultivating wisdom.
Four ‘black’ acts: 1. making offerings to one’s teacher in a wrong way, 2. wrongly forcing others to repent of their evils, 3. being angry with those who follow Mahayana, and 4. entertaining flattery and crookedness when practicing at the place of one’s teacher.
Four continents: According to Buddhist cosmology, there are four continents in the outermost ocean surrounding Mt. Sumeru.
Four Discourses: The four discourses originally written by Indian masters and used as the canonical texts of the Four-discourse school; they are: (1) Discourse on the Middle by Nagarjuna, (2) Twelve-Gate Discourse by Nagarjuna, (3) One Hundred-Verse Discourse by Aryadeva, and Great Wisdom Discourse (Commentary on the Prajnaparamita Sutra) by Nagarjuna.
Four faults in the acts of Dana: 1. not directing the acts of Dana to Bodhi, 2. lacking the proper method, 3. seeking rebirth in a lower state of existence, and 4. approaching a bad teacher.
Four fruits: The four stages of sagehood in Hinayana: 1. ‘the fruit of entering the stream’ of the sacred law to be attained by destroying various wrong views (srota-apatti-phala), 2. ‘the fruit of returning once more’ to be attained by destroying gross evil passions (sakrid-agami-phala), 3. ‘the fruit of not returning’ to be attained by destroying more of one’s evil passions (anagami-phala), and 4. ‘the fruit of arhatship’ to be attained by destroying all evil passions (arhat-phala).
Four great oceans: The oceans surrounding Mount Sumeru.
Four groups of followers of the Buddha: The four groups of those forming the Buddhist order: (1) monks, (2) nuns, (3) laymen, and (4) laywomen.
Four kinds of acts of Dana: 1. both the donor and the recipient are pure, 2. the donor is pure but the recipient is impure, 3. the donor is impure but the recipient is pure, and 4. both are impure.
Four kinds of jewels: Gold, silver, beryl, and crystal.
Forty-eight Vows: The vows made by Amida when he was a bodhisattva; cf. Forty-eight Vows.
Four kinds of offering: The prescribed items of offering to the Buddha: (1) food and drink, (2) clothes, (3) bed, and (4) medicinal drink.
Four major prohibitions: The four gravest offenses for monks: having sexual intercourse, stealing, killing a man, and telling a lie about his spiritual attainment.
Four modes of practice: The rules for practice laid down by Shan-tao: 1. revering Amida and the bodhisattvas and prostrating oneself before them, 2. exclusively performing the five right practices, 3. performing the five right practices without interruption, and 4. continuing the five right practices throughout one’s life.
Four texts which directly expound the Pure Land teaching: The four most important texts of Pure Land Buddhism selected by Honen: the Larger Sutra, Contemplation Sutra, Amida Sutra and Vasubandhu’s Discourse on the Pure Land.
Four-discourse school: A Chinese Buddhist school based on the four Madhyamika texts; see Four Discourses.
Four-fascicle commentary: Shan-tao’s commentary on the Contemplation Sutra in four fascicles.
Fourfold Noble Truth: One of the basic teachings of the Buddha: (1) the truth of suffering, (2) the truth regarding the cause of suffering, i.e. evil passions, (3) the truth regarding the extinction of suffering, i.e. the state free of suffering called Nirvana, and (4) the truth regarding the path to Nirvana, i.e. the Eightfold Noble Path.
Fourteen questions: The fourteen questions which a non-Buddhist master put to the Buddha; the Buddha remained silent and did not answer them: 1. Are the world and the self eternal? 2. Are they not so? 3. Are they both eternal and not eternal? 4. Are they neither eternal nor not eternal? 5. Is the world finite? 6. Is it not finite? 7. Is it both finite and not finite? 8. Is it neither finite nor not finite? 9. Is the soul perishing at death? 10. Is it not perishing? 11. Is it both perishing and not perishing? 12. Is it neither perishing nor not perishing? 13. Is the body identical with the soul after death? 14. Is it different from the soul? Those 14 questions, known as 14 ‘inexpressibles’ occur in many dialogues with variant forms. The more or less standard form consists of the following four sets of questions:
1. Whether the world is eternal, or not, or both, or neither;
2. Whether the world is finite (in space), or infinite, or both, or neither;
3. Whether the Tathagata exists after death, or does not, or both, or neither;
4. Is the soul (jiva) identical with the body or different from it?
Fourth five-hundred-year period: See five five-hundred-year periods.
Fujiwara Kanezane: (1147-1207); a government minister in the 12th century; appointed regent in 1184 and afterward prime minister in 1189; a disciple of Honen, and at his request Honen wrote the Collection of Passages Concerning the Nembutsu of the Best-Selected Primal Vow.
Gandhara: An ancient country in north-west India; under the patronage of King Kaniska in the 2nd century, eminent Buddhist masters, such as Asanga and Vasubandhu, came to live in its capital Purusapura (present Peshawar) and Mahayana Buddhism thrived; also Buddhist art characterized by Greek influence flourished there.
Garland Sutra: One of the most important Mahayana sutras, well-known as the foundation text of the Hua-yen (Kegon) sect; said to have been delivered during the first three weeks after the Buddha’s Enlightenment. The original text was exceptionally voluminous, and so, according to tradition, Nagarjuna went to the Dragon’s Palace and brought back the shortest version of the sutra.
Garuda: A mythological bird said to eat dragons; one of the eight gods and demi-gods who protect Buddhism.
Gate of Essential Teaching: Refers to the teaching of the Nineteenth Vow and corresponds to the teaching of the Contemplation Sutra.
Gaya-kashyapa: ‘Kashyapa of Gaya'; younger brother of Uruvilva-kashyapa; converted to Buddhism with his 200 disciples.
Genko: A Tendai monk on Mt. Hiei and Honen’s teacher.
Genku: Honen’s Buddhist name; see Honenbo Genku.
Genshin: (942-1017); a Tendai monk and a great exponent of the Pure Land teaching; well-known as the author of the Collection of Essential Passages Concerning Birth in the Pure Land; looked upon as the sixth master of the Shin tradition.
Genso: ‘Returning’ aspect; returning to the world of Samsara to save other beings; cf. oso.
‘Going forth’ aspect: One of the two aspects of Amida’s merit-transference for universal salvation; this is the aspect of carrying us to the Pure Land; cf. ‘Returning’ aspect.
Gokuraku: The Land of Utmost Bliss; Sk. Sukhavati.
Golden River: Refers to River Naira\jana which flows near Buddhagaya where the Buddha attained Enlightenment.
Good friend: One who guides others to the Buddhist Path; a master who often approaches others as their friend; Sk. ‘kalyana-mitra’.
Good realms: Refers to heavenly realms.
Grand Sutra on the Inconceivable Emancipation: The title of the old text of the sutra which later came to be known as the Garland Sutra.
Great Assemblage: The assemblage of bodhisattvas in the Pure Land.
Great Being: Same as bodhisattva.
Great Cliff Temple: The temple in Shan-si Province where T’an-luan lived.
Great Collection Sutra: A sutra which explains the Mahayana principles, such as the theory of voidness; this sutra is also strongly characterized by esotericism.
great compassion: The Buddha or bodhisattva’s mind that embraces all sentient beings without discrimination and deliver them from sufferings. Great Compassion is the essential quality of a bodhisattva and is the cause of Buddhahood.
Great Consoler: Refers to Amida.
Great Nirvana: Mahayana Nirvana which is distinguished from the nihilistic Nirvana of Hinayana.
Great Sage: The title of respect for Shakyamuni Buddha.
Great Treasure-Ocean of Merits: Amida’s vast merits accumulated by performing numerous acts of merits for innumerable kalpas; these merits are manifested as Amida’s glorious body and his Pure Land; they are shared by those who trust him with sincere Faith.
Great treasury of merit: Bodhisattvas cultivate merit by doing various good acts, and so they are called ‘great treasuries of merit'; their merit is not merely for their own sake, but is equally shared by other beings so that they achieve higher spiritual states.
Guardian gods of the world: Refers to the Four Guardian Gods of the four directions: (1) Dhritarashtra in the east, (2) Virudhaka in the south, (3) Virupaksha in the west, and (4) Vaishravana in the north.
Heart Sutra: The popular title of the Prajnaparamita-hridaya Sutra; one of the most popular Mahayana sutras which explains voidness of all things.
Heaven: (1) In India, various abodes of heavenly beings (deva) are conceived. (2) In Confucian religion, Heaven is generally the ultimate principle, but is sometimes personified and conceived as if it had will and judgement.
Heaven of Free Enjoyment of Others’ Manifestations: The Sixth and the highest Heaven in the world of desire; demons are said to inhabit there; cf. Sixth Heaven.
Heaven of Pure Abode The Fourth Dhyana: Heaven in the world of form; this heaven is further divided into five planes. In the Pure Land such a heaven does not exist, but the Larger Sutra metaphorically speaks of its existence as a guide to the reader’s understanding.
Heaven of the Four Kings: The heaven of the guardian kings of the four directions surrounding Mount Sumeru; see guardian gods of the world.
Heaven of Thirty-three Gods: Second (counting from below) of the six heavens in the world of desire; located on top of Mount Sumeru; each of the four peaks in the four directions is inhabited by eight gods, and the lord of the heaven, Indra, lives in the palace at the center.
Highest Heaven of the world of form: Popularly known as Akanistha.
Heian period: The period extending from the foundation of Kyoto as Japan’s capital (794) to the establishment of the shogunate Bakufu in Kamakura (1185).
Hell of incessant pain: The lowest part of hell where one suffers interminable pain; Avici Hell.
Hell of Shrieking: One of the eight great hells where sinners undergoing extreme torments shriek.
Highest principle of Dharma: The ultimate truth or reality; the absolute state of existence.
Hinayana: ‘The lesser or smaller vehicle'; originally, a derogatory term applied by Mahayanists to various schools of Buddhism which aim at the salvation of one’s own self and attainment of the stage of an arhat.
Honen: (1133-1212); the seventh master of the Shin tradition and Shinran’s teacher.
Honenbo Genku: Honen’s full name.
Hosso school: The Consciousness-Only school.
Hsiao-yen: The name of the king of Liang who venerated T’an-luan.
Hsuan-chung Temple: The temple in Fen-chou where T’an-luan spent his later days.
Huai-kan: A Chinese Pure Land master in the 7th to 8th centuries; one of the disciples of Shan-tao and the author of the Discourse Clearing Many Doubts.
Hui-yuan of Ching-ying Temple: (523-92); a native of Tun-huang; a great Buddhist scholar who was invited to live in Ching-ying Temple in Lo-yang; well-versed in Buddhism, he wrote commentaries on many Mahayana sutras and also composed an encyclopedic discourse on the Mahayana principles.
Hui-yuan (of Mt. Lu): (334-416); a celebrated Chinese monk who formed the White Lotus Society on Mt.Lu for the performance of meditation on Amida; he is often looked upon as the founder of Chinese Pure Land school.
Hymn in Praise of Amida Buddha: T’an-luan’s work that praises Amida’s virtue, based on which Shinran composed Japanese hymns.
Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land: The hymn composed by Vasubandhu, which is fully explained in his Discourse on the Pure Land; for its full title, see next.
Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land: A discourse on the Sutra of the Buddha of Infinite Life, the full title of the work by Vasubandhu which is popularly known as Discourse on the Pure Land.
Hymn of True Faith: The literal translation of ‘Shoshinge’.
Hymn of True Faith in Nembutsu: A translation of ‘Shoshin nembutsu ge.’
Hymns on the Pratyutpanna Samadhi: The hymns composed by Shan-tao which eulogize Amida’s virtue and explain, among other things, torment in hell, pleasure in the Pure Land, and the method of attaining birth there.
Hymns on the Pure Land: The first of the three collections of Japanese hymns by Shinran.
Hymns on the Seven Patriarchs: The second of the three collections of Japanese hymns by Shinran.
Ichinen tanen mon’i: A work composed by Shinran when he was 85; the title means ‘One Thought and Many Callings'; written in answer to his disciples’ question whether one thought of Nembutsu-Faith is the sufficient cause of birth in the Pure Land or many callings of Nembutsu are required.
Ignorance: Spiritual darkness or obscurity; the first of the twelve causations.
Immovable Stage: The Eighth Stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Imperfect faith: According to T’an-luan, imperfect faith, which is the opposite of perfect faith, has three aspects: insincere faith, mind which is not single, and faith which does not continue.
Inconceivable: (1) Beyond concepts; (2) a large number.
Inconceivable Light: One of the twelve lights of Amida.
Ineffable Light: One of the twelve lights of Amida.
Infinite Life: One of the two major qualities of Amida, from which his name Amitayus is derived.
Infinite Life and Light: The two major qualities of Amida.
Insight into the non-arising of all dharmas: See next.
Insight into the non-arising of all existences: The higher spiritual awakening in which one recognizes that nothing really arises or perishes; Sk. anutpattika-dharma-ksanti.
Irreversible wheel of the Dharma: the Buddha Dharma keeps moving endlessly like a wheel without reversing.
Jambu River: The river running through the mango forest in the northern part of Jambudvipa; this river is known for producing purple-gold; see purple-gold (M12,15-8).
Jambudvipa: The continent situated to the south of Mount Sumeru; a triangular island inhabited by human beings; it is believed that hell is located many yojanas underground.
Jambu-gold: The red-yellow gold which gives forth purple vapor; it is said to be obtained from the Jambu River.
Japanese Tendai Buddhism: Founded on Mt. Hiei by Saicho (766 or 767-822), who went to China and received the T’ien-t’ai teaching from Tao-sui and Hsing-man; after returning home in 805, he extensively propagated the teaching and wrote some 160 works.
Jara-marana: ‘Decay and death'; the last of the twelve causations.
Jati: ‘birth'; the eleventh of the twelve causations.
Jeta Grove: The garden of Prince Jeta presented to the Buddha by Sudatta, who built a monastery there.
Jinjippo Mugeko Nyorai: ‘The Tathagata of Unhindered Light Shining throughout the Ten Directions'; the name of adoration for Amida first used by Vasubandhu in his Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land; Shinran especially liked to use this, and this name with the word ‘Kimyo’ (I take refuge in) affixed to it came to be used widely as the Name.
Jivaka: A famous physician and the son of King Bimbisara’s younger brother; said to have cured the Buddha’s illness.
jivamjivaka: ‘Life-living'; a mythical bird with two heads that sing sweetly; also identified with a kind of pheasant found in the mountains of north India.
Jodo school: The Pure Land school founded by Honen.
Jojonin: ‘A superior person'; one of the five words of high praise given by Shan-tao to a Nembutsu follower.
Joyful Faith: Second of the three aspects of Faith in the Eighteenth Vow; it represents all the three aspects and so refers to the Other-Power Faith; Sk. prasanna-citta, prasada.
Kalavinka: An Indian cuckoo; a bird with sweet voice said to be found in the Himalayas; also a mythical bird with woman’s head, found in the Pure Land; cf. Amida Sutra Mandala.
Kalayashas: A monk from Central Asia; went to China in early 5th century and translated two sutras, including the Contemplation Sutra; died in 442 at the age of 60.
Kao Tsung (Emperor): (628-83); the third emperor in T’ang dynasty.
Kalpa: An immeasurably long time; aeons; also a period of cosmic change.
Kapphina: Also Kapphilla, Kaphina, Kaphila, Kamphilla; n. of a disciple of the Buddha.
Karma: An act; in Buddhism, three kinds of act are distinguished: bodily, verbal, and mental; also, according to its moral nature, an act can be good, evil or neutral.
Karma-bound: Bound by one’s own evil karma.
Karmic: Pertaining to karma; related to bodily and mental acts; often used in the sense of evil acts which will bring about painful retributions.
Karmic bondage: The state of being bound by one’s own acts.
Karmic defilement: Defilements by evil acts.
karmic energy Psycho-physical energy created by one’s karma.
Karmic evil: Evil acts, often in the sense of those done in the past and bound to bring about their effect in the present and future lives.
Karmic force: Psycho-physical energy created by one’s acts and bound to bring about their effect.
Karmic hindrances: Hindrances to spiritual progress brought about by evil karma.
Karmic power: Same as karmic force.
Karmic Power: Amida’s Power originating in his vows and practice; it has produced and sustains his body of glory and the Pure Land everlastingly; also, this is the source of eternal activity of saving sentient beings.
Karmic retribution: Retribution for evil acts done in the past.
karmic transgressions: Wrong-doing which are bound to bring about their retribution.
Kegon sect: Hua-yen sect; founded in China based on the Garland Sutra; in Japan, this sect thrived in the Nara period.
Keunin: ‘A rare person'; one of the fives words of high praise given by Shan-tao to a Nembutsu follower.
Kimshuka: The tree Butea frondosa which bears beautiful red blossoms.
Kimyo Jinjippo Mugeko Nyorai: ‘I take refuge in the Tathagata of Unhindered Light Shining throughout the Ten Directions'; the term originally comes from Vasubandhu’s Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land and is used by Shinran as the 10-character Name of Amida which indicates unity of Amida and the devotee.
King of fire: A big blazing fire.
King of Liang: Refers to Wu-t’i of Liang dynasty, who reigned from 502 to 549.
King of mountains: Refers to Mount Sumeru.
King of Sages: An epithet of the Buddha.
King of Wei: Refers to the Emperor of Eastern Wei dynasty, who is identified as Hsiao-ching T’i (reigned 534-50).
King of samadhis: A description of the Nembutsu Samadhi.
King of the Dharma: Refers to the Buddha because he has realized the Dharma, become one with it and is capable of employing it freely.
King of the Vows: A term used to describe the Eighteenth Vow.
Koen: A Tendai monk and one of the teachers of Honen on Mt. Hiei; died in 1169.
Kokalika: Devadatta’s disciple; he made a false remark that Shariputra and Mahamaudgalyayana had a sexual intercourse with a woman. The Buddha reprimanded him three times but he did not obey the Buddha. As a result, he fell into Great Lotus hell while alive.
Konin ‘An excellent person'; one of the five words of high praise given by Shan-tao to a Nembutsu follower.
Koti: A numerical unit in India, said to be equal to 10 million.
Ksatriya king: A king of the warrior caste, the second highest of the four castes in India.
Kuccha: An ancient country in Central Asia.
Kumarajiva: ‘Youth-life'; a great translator of Buddhist texts (344-413); his Indian father, Kumarayana, was formerly a government minister; having renounced the world, he went to Kuccha and married Jiva, a sister of the king. Kumarajiva entered the priesthood at seven and studied Buddhism in northwest India and elsewhere. After returning home, he spread Mahayana Buddhism. At the invitation of a Chinese king, in 401 he went to Ch’ang-an, where he was appointed as the teacher of the state. For the rest of his life, he translated Buddhist texts, amounting to 35 sutras and discourses in more than 300 fascicles, including the Lotus Sutra and Prajnaparamita Sutra. It is said that he had 3,000 disciples.
Kuo-ch’ing Temple: A famous temple on Mt. T’ien-t’ai.
Kurodani (precinct): A part of Mt. Hiei where Honen dwelt for some time and studied under Eiku.
Kyogyoshinsho: ‘Teaching, Practice, Faith and Enlightenment'; Shinran’s magnum opus written in Chinese, in which he explains the Shin Buddhist system of salvation in full detail; doctrinally, the most important text of Shin Buddhism.
Land in the Western Quarter: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Bliss: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of form: One of the two aspects of the Pure Land distinguished by Tao-ch’o.
Land of Immeasurable Light: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Indolence and Pride: The land of temporary habitation for those who aspire to the Pure Land but, being attached to their own power, cannot fully trust the Other-Power.
Land of Infinite Light: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Naturalness: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land, which is perfectly in accord with the ultimate reality, or True Suchness.
Land of Nirvana: Amida’s Pure Land is so called because it is above Samsara and is itself the sphere of Nirvana.
Land of Nirvanic Bliss: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Peace and Bliss: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Peace and Provision: A translation of ‘Annyo’, which is one of the names of Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of pure karmic perfection: Refers to a Buddha’s land.
Land of Recompense: The land which comes into existence as the reward for the vows and acts of merits of a bodhisattva; especially refers to Amida’s Pure Land.
Land of Unproducedness: Refers to Amida’s Pure Land, which is above all changes and is itself identical with Nirvana.
Land of Utmost Bliss: ‘Sukhavati’ in Skt., meaning ‘endowed with happiness'; Amitabha’s land is so called because those living there are free of afflictions and enjoy the supreme bliss of Nirvana. His land, usually called ‘the Pure Land,’ is the reward for the long course of practice which he performed when he was a bodhisattva called ‘Dharmakara’ (Dharma-store). Although its glorious splendor is described in physical terms in the sutras, this land is above all forms and concepts. It is the sphere of pure spiritual activity; those born there are awakened to the ultimate reality and compassion spontaneously arises in them. In other words, having become bodhisattvas, they participate in Amitabha’s endless work of delivering beings from delusions and sufferings.
land of no-birth The term used by T’an-luan to refer to the ultimate nature of the Pure Land, which is void and non-substantial.
Land of non-form: One of the two aspects of the Pure Land distinguished by Tao-ch’o.
Lankavatara Sutra: A sutra which contains various Mahayana theories, such as eight consciousnesses, and is used by the Hosso and Zen sects as one of their canonical texts.
Larger Sutra: Abbr. of the Larger Sukhavativyuha Sutra, or the Sutra on the Buddha of Infinite Life, which is the basic canon of Pure Land Buddhism.
Last Dharma-age: The last of the three Dharma-ages, i.e. the age of Decadent Dharma, in which there still exists the Buddha’s teaching and no one practices it in the true sense of the term and attains emancipation; the duration of this age is ten thousand years.
Law of karma: The universal law that governs the relationship between one’s acts and their effects; the law of cause and effect.
Law of salvation: Amida’s saving activity does not deviate from the universal truth; it is perfectly in agreement with the law of karma.
Li: A Chinese measure of length equal to 360 paces, or about 1890 feet (Matthews). Used in the Larger Sutra to translate the Indian unit of measurement yojana; a comparison between the Chinese and the Sanskrit texts shows that one yojana is equivalent to 250 li in chapters 15 and 28, and to 2500 li in chapters 7 and 15.
Light Outshining the Sun and the Moon: One of the twelve lights of Amida Buddha.
Light of Joy: One of the twelve lights of Amida Buddha.
Light of Wisdom: One of the twelve lights of Amida Buddha.
Lineage of Dharma-transmission: The line of transmission of a particular teaching of the Buddha.
Liturgy for Birth: A work by Shan-tao; a collection of passages and hymns with comments from Pure Land sutras and discourses, arranged for chanting purposes.
Lokaksema: A monk from Central Asia, who went to Lo-yang in 147 and produced Mahayana sutras, including the oldest Chinese version of the Larger Sutra.
Lokeshvararaja: The name of the Buddha who led Dharmakara to awaken Bodhi-Mind.
Long and broad tongue: One of the physical characteristics of a Buddha; as described in the Smaller Sutra, numerous Buddhas in the ten directions recommend the teaching of this sutra, each extending his tongue and covering the whole universe with it; such hyperbolic metaphors are often found in the sutras; cf. thirty-two physical characteristics.
Lord of Saha world: An epithet for Mahabrahma, who reigns over the First Dhyana Heaven in the realm of form.
Loss of everything: Falling into the stages of a shravaka and a pratyekabuddha is so described.
Lotus Sutra: The common abbreviation of the Lotus of Wonderful Dharma Sutra; the fundamental scripture of the Tendai and Nichiren sects.
Luan: Lit. phoenix; refers to T’an-luan.
Lung-men: The name of a place in Ho-nan Province, well-known for its cave temples.
Madhyamika: The School of the Middle; the Mahayana school founded on Nagarjuna’s Verse on the Middle and other discourses, which teach that nothing really exists and no positive statement concerning the nature of things is possible.
Madhyamika doctrine: The Madhyamika doctrine of total negativism does not teach simple negation as opposed to affirmation, but rejects all kinds of negation; such a standpoint is described as ‘the Middle’ or ‘the Middle Path.’
Madhyamika-Pure Land master: Refers to T’an-luan, who upheld the Pure Land teaching while maintaining the Madhyamika standpoint.
Magadha An ancient country in central India, in the present Bihar district.
Mahakashyapa: The foremost of the Buddha’s disciples; appointed by the Buddha as his successor; also renowned as the first patriarch of Zen and for his strict observance of the rules for frugal living.
Mahasattva: A great being; used as a synonym of bodhisattva.
Mahasthamaprapta: Lit. ‘one who has great power'; a bodhisattva well-known as an attendant of Amida; he represents Amida’s wisdom.
Mahavairocana: The central Buddha in esoteric Buddhism.
Mahayana: ‘The Great Vehicle'; one of the two major schools of Buddhism, the other being Hinayana, or Theravada. Mahayana aims at bringing all sentient beings to Buddhahood. Followers of Mahayana are called ‘bodhisattvas.’ ‘enlightenment-beings.’ At the outset of their career, they make vows to save all beings, and in order to realize them, cultivate wisdom and accumulate merits. When their vows are fulfilled, they become Buddhas. Although historical evidence shows that Mahayana arose a few centuries after the Buddha’s death, Mahayanists believe that the essential part of the Mahayana teaching was revealed by the Buddha.
Maitreya: Lit. ‘the friendly'; the bodhisattva of the highest stage now dwelling in the Tusita Heaven; after the end of his life there, he will appear in this world to become the next Buddha.
Majestically Flaming Light: One of the twelve lights of Amida.
Mandarava: Also mandara; a kind of heavenly flower, beautiful to look at and pleasure-giving.
mani See the next entry.
Mani-jewel: A precious gem of a globular shape with a short pointed top.
Mara: A devil, an adversary, a demon; there are four kinds of demons in Buddhism: (1) evil passions, (2) the five constituent elements of one’s existence, (3) death, and (4) the king of maras inhabiting the Sixth Heaven in the world of desire.
Manjushri: ‘Beauty and glory'; a bodhisattva who represents the wisdom and enlightenment of all Buddhas. He is usually portrayed mounted on a lion attending on Shakyamuni’s left hand.
Maras’ evil acts: Various acts of the maras to cause hindrances to bodhisattvas and thwart their attempt to realize the Buddhist ideals.
Mark of a thousand-spoked wheel: One of the thirty-two physical characteristics of the Buddha; this mark is seen on the sole of his foot; cf. thirty-two physical characteristics.
Master of Discourse: Especially refers to Vasubandhu, the author of the Discourse on the Pure Land.
Material Dana: Giving gifts to the needy; one of the two kinds of Dana, the other being Dharma Dana.
Medicinal plant: In practicing Dana, one should consider one’s body as a medicinal plant and give away any part of the body as if every part of the medicinal plant could be used as medicine.
Meditation of Vast and Universal Tranquillity: The samadhi which bodhisattvas of the ninth stage enter before preaching the Dharma.
Method of concentration on visualizing the sun: Shan-tao’s explanation of the first of the thirteen contemplations presented in the Contemplation Sutra.
Mind of Great Joy: Refers to Faith of the Other-Power, shinjin.
Minor bodhisattvas: Those bodhisattvas below the 7th stage, who have not yet attained unrestricted power to benefit themselves and others.
Miscellaneous acts: Various acts of merits done for the purpose of attaining birth in the Pure Land; since they are primarily non-Pure Land acts and are based on the practicer’s impure motives, they are to be discarded in preference to the Five Right Acts.
Miscellaneous acts of virtue: Same as above.
Miscellaneous practices: Same as above.
Mixed practice: The term given to mixed practice of Right Acts and Auxiliary Acts.
Mleccha: a barbarian.
Most excellent person: one of the five names used by Shan-tao to describe a person of Nembutsu.
Most Holy One of all Sages: An epithet of the Buddha.
Most Honored One: An epithet of the Buddha.
Most Honored One among human and heavenly beings: an epithet of the Buddha.
Most Honored One in the Three Worlds: An epithet of the Buddha.
Most Revered One in the World: An epithet of the Buddha.
Most Valiant One: An epithet of the Buddha.
Mount Lanka: The mountain where the Lankavatara Sutra was expounded; identified with Adam’s Peak in south-western part of Sri Lanka.
Mount Sumeru: The highest mountain rising from the center of the world; it has four sides and is narrowest in the middle; it is surrounded by eight mountain-ranges, and in the ocean between the seventh and the eighth there are four continents inhabited by humans.
Mt. Chung-nan: The mountain in the outskirts of Chang-an where Shan-tao lived for several years.
Mt. Hiei: The mountain to the north-east of Kyoto where there is the center of Tendai school.
Mt. Lu A mountain in Chiang-hsi Province where Hui-yuan formed the White Lotus Society to practice meditation on Amida.
Mt. T’ien-t’ai: A mountain in Che-chiang Province well-known as the center of T’ien-t’ai school.
Myoga: Miraculous protection.
Myokonin: ‘An excellent, wonderful man'; one of the five words of high praise used by Shan-tao for a Nembutsu follower; later in Japan, this word came to be used for devout Shin followers of distinguished acts but, frequently, of little education.
Myokoninden: Lives of Wondrous and Inspiring People.
Naga tree: The Bodhi-tree under which Maitreya will become a Buddha.
Na-mo-o-mi-t’o-fo: The Chinese reading of the sacred Name of Amitabha, meaning ‘Homage to Amita Buddha’ or ‘I take refuge in Amita Buddha'; cf. Amita.
Narayana: ‘The son of the original man'; a Vajra god with enormous physical power.
Nayuta: A high number said to be equal to 10 million, or 100 billion.
Net of evil passions: Ordinary beings are caught in the strong net of evil passions which they produce.
Net of wrong views: An intricate net of various wrong views in which ordinary beings are inescapably caught.
Nagarjuna: (2nd to 3rd centuries); a great exponent of Mahayana and the founder of the Madhyamika School; the first of the seven masters of Shin Buddhism.
Nama-rupa: ‘Name and form'; the fourth of the twelve causations; ‘name’ refers to immaterial elements of one’s existence, and ‘form’, to material elements; together they constitute an individual existence.
Namo ‘mitabhaya: A Sanskrit phrase of adoration to Amida, meaning ‘I take refuge in Amitabha’ or ‘Adoration to Amitabha.’
Name: The Name in Shin Buddhism is not simply Amida’s name, but ‘Namu Amida Butsu.’
namu Originally a Sanskrit word meaning ‘I take refuge in’ or ‘adoration to'; in the Name, this word refers to Faith awakened in the devotee’s mind by the Other-Power.
Namu Amida Butsu: ‘I take refuge in Amida Buddha'; the most important element of salvation in Pure Land Buddhism; when vocally pronounced, this is the Nembutsu, and when received in the mind, it is Faith. In Shan-tao’s interpretation, ‘Namu’ refers to the devotee’s ‘vow’ (aspiration) and ‘Amida Butsu’, ‘practice’ (merits or saving power), the two pivotal elements required for one’s salvation.
Nara period: The period when Japan’s capital was in Nara, 710-94; in this period Buddhism thrived under the protection of the state.
Naturalness (ultimate state of): Things as they really are; as-it-is-ness; True Suchness; the ultimate reality which is only intuitively known with the wisdom of Enlightenment.
Naturalness of the Way Spontaneity of Buddha-Dharma: the transcendent state and activity of True Suchness which are free of human calculations.
Nayuta: A high number said to be equal to 10 million, or 100 billion.
Nembutsu: Recitation of the Name, ‘Namu Amida Butsu'; meditation on Amida; Amida’s saving activity which finds its expression in one’s mind and body. In its relation to Faith, Nembutsu is spontaneous self-expression of Faith.
Nembutsu of the Best-selected Primal Vow: The phrase used by Honen to refer to the Nembutsu of the Eighteenth Vow.
Nembutsu of the Other-Power: The Nembutsu practiced in accord with Amida’s Vow; the Nembutsu which spontaneously comes to one’s lips from the depth of Faith; the Nembutsu as such is considered as an expression of one’s gratitude to Amida.
Nembutsu Samadhi: Concentrated practice of reciting the Nembutsu while thinking on Amida, through which one attains unity with Amida; also used in the sense of visualization of Amida in a trance-like state.
Nembutsu shoshin ge: The title of the Hymn of Nembutsu and True Faith that is contained in Shinran’s Collection of Passages Concerning the Pure Land (Jodo monrui jusho).
Nembutsu-Faith: The Nembutsu and Faith are inseparable; they are given as one to the devotee.
Nembutsu-assisting actions (seven): They were established by Genshin in his Collection of Essential Passages Concerning Birth in the Pure Land.
Nexus of causal relationships: Refers to the twelve causations.
Nine grades of aspirants: They are distinguished in the Contemplation Sutra; in Shinran’s view, they are provisional divisions, which cease to exist when the aspirants are born in the True Land of Recompense.
Nigrodha tree: The Bodhi-tree under which Kashyapa became a Buddha.
Nine elements of virtue: 1. forbearance, 2. great mercy, 3. great compassion, 4. wisdom, 5. mindfulness, 6. resolute mind, 7. absence of greed, 8. absence of anger and 9. absence of stupidity.
Nine faults: 1. not wishing to hear the teaching of Bodhi, 2. not believing in it even if one hears it, 3. not accepting it in mind even if one believes in it, 4. not chanting it even if one accepts it, 5. not understanding the meaning of it even if one chants it, 6. not expounding it to others even if one understands the meaning of it, 7. not practicing the teaching as prescribed even if one expounds it to others, 8. not practicing it continuously even if one practices it, and 9. not practicing it well even if one practices it continuously.
Nine kinds of karma: Evil acts by the body, speech and mind produce three kinds of retribution: retribution in the present life, in the next life and in the life after next.
Nirmanakaya: ‘Transformed body’ of the Buddha.
Nirvana: The final goal of Buddhist aspiration and endeavor, where evil passions are extinguished and the highest wisdom attained; often translated as ‘Extinction’ or ‘Tranquility'; in the Mahayana, Nirvana is not a nihilistic or static state, but is the state of eternity, bliss, freedom and purity; it is the sphere of activities of Buddhas and bodhisattvas.
Nirvana Sutra: The popular title of the Sutra on the Great Extinction; the Mahayana account of the Buddha’s passing away. The sutra also explains the eternal presence of the Buddha and the inherence of Buddha-nature in every living being.
Nirvanic Bliss: The state of the highest bliss that attends Nirvana.
Nirvanic Dharma-body of true wisdom: The term used by Vasubandhu in his Discourse on the Pure Land to describe the ultimate reality into which all the glorious manifestations of Amida, his Pure Land and bodhisattvas enter.
Nirvanic Pure Land Amida’s Pure Land which is perfectly in accord with Nirvana.
Non-dual equality: In the eye of the Buddha’s wisdom, all existing things, animate or inanimate, have the absolute value and so are undifferentiated.
Non-meditative acts of merits: Meritorious acts done in the ordinary state of mind which is not concentrated on a particular object.
Non-retrogression: See Stage of Non-retrogression.
Non-retrogressive bodhisattvas: The bodhisattvas in the Stage of Non-retrogression.
Nyagrodha: The Banyan or Indian fig-tree, Ficus Indica; fibers descend from its branches to the earth and there take root and form new stems.
Okite: Rules of conduct.
Omniscience: All-knowing wisdom of the Buddha.
On the Meaning of Meditative Good Acts: The third fascicle of the four-fascicle commentary on the Contemplation Sutra by Shan-tao.
One Mind: The single-minded trust in Amida which Vasubandhu professed in his Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land; in Shinran’s interpretation, the One Mind is the same as the Three Minds, or the three aspects of Faith of the Eighteenth Vow.
One Thought and Many Callings: A work by Shinran when he was 85 years of age, in which he quotes from Ryukan’s work to show that one should not be attached to either one thought of Faith or many sayings of the Nembutsu.
One-Vehicle teaching: The single path to Enlightenment for all living beings; ekayana in Sk.; this is the supreme teaching of all Mahayana ways; the Lotus Sutra has been widely accepted as the sutra that sets forth the One-Vehicle teaching. In Shinran’s view, the Larger Sutra ranks above the Lotus Sutra, because it presents the way of attaining Buddhahood for all sentient beings, even the most wicked people.
One-Vehicle teaching of the Primal Vow: Shin Buddhism is the way of salvation originating from Amida’s Primal Vow, which is firmly grounded in the One-Vehicle teaching.
Oneness: a synonym of True Suchness; the ultimate truth and reality which is undivided and perfect by itself.
Original Vows: The vows which bodhisattvas make when they resolve to become Buddhas and save all sentient beings; in the Pure Land sutras they refer to Dharmakara’s 48 Vows.
Other Shore: The other shore of the stream of transmigration; the state of emancipation, i.e., Nirvana, beyond the realm of Samsara.
Other-Power: Amida’s saving power originating from his Primal Vow.
Other-Power Faith: The Faith awakened by Amida’s Power.
Other-Power: Way The way of attaining Enlightenment through the Other-Power.
Palace of the Heaven of Free Enjoyment of Others’ Manifestations: The palace of the Sixth Heaven in the world of desire, where it is believed that the king of maras dwells; cf. Heaven of Free Enjoyment of Others’ Manifestations.
Pao-yun: The Chinese monk who is believed to have assisted in producing the authentic translation of the Larger Sutra.
Parable of Two Rivers of Greed and Anger: A well-known parable used by Shan-tao to demonstrate how a man full of evil passions awakens Faith and attains salvation.
Paramita: Popularly construed as ‘gone to the other shore,’ ‘salvation’ and ‘perfection'; see Six Paramitas.
Parent: Corresponds to the Japanese ‘Oyasama’, which is frequently used to refer to Amida who compassionately cares for us and guides us to salvation.
Parinama: The Sanskrit for ‘merit-transference’.
Parinirvana: ‘Complete Nirvana'; in common usage, refers to Shakyamuni’s death.
Path of Difficult Practice: One of the two kinds of practice distinguished by Nagarjuna, the other being the Path of Easy Practice; this is the ordinary bodhisattva practice that involves painstaking efforts for a long period.
Path of Easy Practice: See Easy Practice.
Path of Elixir: The path to Nirvana.
Path of Sages: One of the two approaches to Buddhahood distinguished by Tao-ch’o, the other being Pure Land Path; this is the path of difficult practice which only sages of high spiritual capacity can successfully follow.
Path of the ten evil acts: See ten evil acts.
Path of the ten good acts: See ten good acts.
Peace and Bliss: Another name for the land of Amitabha; see Land of Utmost Bliss.
Peerless Honored One in the Three Worlds: An epithet of the Buddha.
Peerless King of the Excellent Dharma: An epithet of the Buddha.
Pentatonic scales: The five tones of the ancient Chinese musical scale: kung, shang, chiao, wei and yu; they respectively correspond to the five elements: earth, metal, wood, fire and water.
Perfected One: ‘Sugata’ in Skt., meaning ‘well-gone'; a Blessed One; an epithet for a Buddha.
Perfectly Enlightened One: One of the ten titles of the Buddha.
Philosophy of Voidness: The Mahayana teaching which stresses that all existing things are devoid of substantiality and so are merely manifestations from causes and conditions; especially, refers to the Madhyamika doctrine.
Perfect in Wisdom and Conduct: One of the ten epithets of the Buddha.
Period of cosmic change: ‘Kalpa’ in Skt.; the four periods of cosmic change are repeated endlessly: (1) the period of creation, (2) the period during which the world continues to exist, (3) the period of destruction during which various realms, from hell to the First Dhyana Heaven in the world of form, are destroyed successively by fire, water and wind, and (4) the period of annihilation during which no material forms exist; the duration of each period is 20 small kalpas.
Physical body: a physical manifestation of the Buddha.
Physical characteristics and marks: The 32 physical characteristics and 80 minor marks of excellence of the Buddha; see thirty-two physical characteristics and 80 secondary marks.
Pindola-Bharadvaja: ‘Pindola, the skylark'; also Pindola-Bharadvaja; n. of a disciple of the Buddha.
Possessed of Great Power: ‘Mahasthamaprapta’ in Skt.; n. of one of the two bodhisattvas attending Amitabha.
Prajna: Wisdom, especially the wisdom of realizing non-substantiality of all that exists; transcendent wisdom.
Prajnaparamita: Perfection of wisdom; one of the Six Paramitas; see Six Paramitas.
Prajnaparamita Sutra: A group of sutras that explain voidness of all things.
Prasada: Pure and serene faith.
Pratityasamutpada: Dependent origination; the Buddhist principle that explains inter-relatedness of all that exists.
Pratyekabuddha: ‘A solitary Buddha'; one of the two kinds of Hinayana sages who seek to attain Nirvana and become arhats; the other kind is the shravaka. A pratyekabuddha is a type of mendicant who attains emancipation by observing the principle of twelve causations without a teacher’s guidance.
Pratyutpanna Samadhi: the samadhi presented in the Pratyutpanna-samadhi Sutra; the Samadhi of Being in the Presence of the Present Buddhas; if one concentrates on Amida according to the method prescribed in this sutra, one can visualize Amida and other Buddhas.
Precepts for a novice: The ten precepts which a novice (shramanera) must observe prior to his receiving the 250 precepts to become a monk; see ten precepts.
Precepts of abstinence: See eight precepts of abstinence.
Prediction: Refers to the prediction which a bodhisattva receives from Buddhas regarding his attainment of Buddhahood in the future.
Primal Vow-Power: The endless power produced by Amida’s Primal Vow to fulfill it.
Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra: The sutra that explains the Pratyutpanna Samadhi; see Sutra on the Samadhi of All Buddhas’ Appearance.
Psycho-physical energy: An expression used to explain karma or karmic power.
Pundarika: A white lotus; a person of the Nembutsu is compared to a white lotus, because he is free from worldly defilements.
Pure Dana: The Dana as it should be performed.
Pure Dharma-eye: Refers to the wisdom of realizing the Fourfold Noble Truth at the initial stage of a Hinayana sage.
Pure Faith: The mind which completely trusts Amida; shinjin; it is pure because it is not mixed with or defiled by our self-attachment and evil passions and is itself Amida’s Heart and Mind.
Pure karma: Such acts as the bodhisattvas’ Six Paramitas are free of selfish motivations and defiled passions, and so they are called pure karma.
Pure karmic activity: Refers to Amida’s boundless and endless activity which is in accord with True Suchness and so is absolutely pure.
Pure Land: Any Buddha’s land is called ‘pure land,’ but it usually refers to Amitabha’s land, called ‘Sukhavati,’ the Land of Utmost Bliss; it is the physical manifestation of the supreme merit which Dharmakara attained by accomplishing the bodhisattva’s practices for many aeons.
Pure Land Buddhism: The general term for the school of Buddhism which centers around Amida and his Pure Land. It emerged in India as an intrinsic part of Mahayana Buddhism, and the sutras explaining its teaching were compiled from around the beginning of our common era, although its origin is traced back to Shakyamuni’s Enlightenment. Pure Land Buddhism developed in India, attained further development and popularity in China and Tibet, and bore illustrious fruitions in Japan as Honen’s Jodoshu and Shinran’s Jodoshinshu.
Pure Land mandalas: The mandalas depicting Amida and his Pure Land based on the Pure Land sutras.
Pure Land meditation: meditation on the Pure Land, which, according to the Contemplation Sutra, consists of 13 visualizations.
Pure Land of Naturalness: Amida’s Pure Land is perfectly in accord with the ultimate reality, which is described as True Suchness, Dharma-nature, Naturalness, etc.
Pure Land of Recompense: The Pure Land is the result of Dharmakara’s vows and acts of merit.
Pure Land Path: One of the two approaches to Buddhahood distinguished by Tao-ch’o, the other being Path of Sages; this is the way of attaining Enlightenment after birth in the Pure Land.
Pure Land practices: The practices required for the attainment of birth in the Pure Land. Vasubandhu presented the Five Mindful Practices and Shan-tao systematized the Five Right Acts.
Pure Land system: The system of practice and faith established as the way to the Pure Land.
Pure Land Way: The way to birth in the Pure Land.
Pure Person: An epithet of the Buddha.
Pure precepts: Impeccable observance of the precept.
Purnamaitrayaniputra: ‘Son of Purna-maitrayani (abundant friendliness)'; one of the ten great disciples of the Buddha renowned for his skill in expounding the teaching.
Purple-gold: The gold said to be obtained from the river running through the mango forest; cf. Jambu River.
Purusapura: the town in Northern India where Vasubandhu was born.
Rahula: ‘A fetter'; the Buddha’s son who later became his disciple; renowned for his strict observance of all the monastic rules.
Rajagriha: The capital of Magadha at the time of the Buddha; the present Rajgir.
Ratnacandra: The seeker of the Buddhist Way who appears as the chief interlocutor in the Hogatsudoji-shomongyo.
Realm of asuras: one of the six lower states of existence, where asuras, fighting spirits, inhabit; see six realms.
Recompensed Body: Sk. sambhogakaya; the Buddha’s glorious bodily manifestation as the result of the meritorious acts which he did when he was a bodhisattva.
Recompensed Land: The Buddha’s land or sphere of activity which has been naturally produced as the result of his meritorious acts.
Record of Attainment of Samadhi: A record of Honen’s mysterious experience of Amida Samadhi during the period, 1198 to 1206. It is believed that Honen himself wrote this but kept it secret; after his death, his disciple Genchi published this.
Retainers of the Dharma: Refers to bodhisattvas, who attend to the Buddha like the retainers of a king.
‘Returning’ aspect: One of the two aspects of Amida’s merit-transference for universal salvation; this is the aspect of enabling us to return the world of Samsara to save other beings; cf. ‘Going forth’ aspect.
Right Dharma: The Buddha-Dharma; the Buddha’s teaching.
Right mindedness: The correct state of mind in which one is properly directed to and united with the Buddha.
Right Path: The way to Buddhahood.
Rite for the Samadhi for (Transcending) Twenty-five (States of Samsara): The rules set up by Genshin for the monthly Nembutsu gathering.
River of birth-and-death: Samsara which is also compared to the sea.
River of fire: One of the two rivers in the Parable of Two Rivers and the White Path employed by Shan-tao to show how one awakens Faith in the midst of evil passions; fire symbolizes anger.
River of water See above; water symbolizes greed.
Rusushiki: Caretaker of Otani memorial.
Ryogemon: Statement of Conviction.
Ryogen: A Tendai monk and Genshin’s teacher (912-85).
Sad-ayatana: The six sense-organs.
Sage of Illimitable Virtue: An epithet of the Buddha.
Saha: Lit. ‘endurance, patience'; the name of this world, where people must endure various afflictions and pain.
Saicho: The founder of the Japanese Tendai school; 766 or 767-822; he established the center of Tendai studies and practices on Mt. Hiei, which became the fountainhead of Pure Land thoughts in the later period.
Shala tree: The Bodhi-tree under which Vishvabhu became a Buddha.
Samadhi: A mental state of concentration and focussing of thought on one object; also a transcendent and trance-like state of mind attained by repeated practice of concentration.
Samadhi of Being in the Presence of All Buddhas: The samadhi in which one stands face to face with all Buddhas; this samadhi has been widely practiced in India, China and Japan as a method of visualizing Amitabha.
Samadhis of emptiness, non-form and non-desire: The samadhi in which one realizes that the dharmas are empty and are not to be grasped as objects of perception and desire.
Samadhi of Extinction: Skt. ‘nirodha-samapatti'; the samadhi which an arhat frequently enters to enjoy the pleasure of no-thought.
Samadhi of Great Tranquility: The samadhi which Shakyamuni entered prior to his deliverance of the Larger Sutra.
Samadhi of Recollection of Amida: See Nembutsu Samadhi.
Samadhi of Tranquility: A Pure Land samadhi mentioned by Vasubandhu in his Five Mindful Practices.
Samantabhadra: A great bodhisattva who represents the ultimate principle, meditation and practice of all Buddhas; often portrayed mounted on a white elephant. Following his virtue, one who is born in the Pure Land is capable of coming back to this world of Samsara to save others.
Sambhogakaya: the body of recompense of a Buddha manifested as the result of his supreme merit.
Samghavarman: An Indian monk or a monk from Samarkand who went to China in 254 and translated sutras at the White Horse Temple in Lo-yang; the Chinese translation of the Larger Sutra is traditionally ascribed to him but modern scholars doubt this ascription.
Samsara: The cycle of birth-and-death to which living beings are bound as the result of their karma; the state of transmigration; Buddhism aims at delivering beings from this state and leading them to Nirvana; cf. birth-and-death.
Samskara: Blind volition or force; the second of the twelve causations.
Sangha: The Buddhist order; originally, a company of monks but came to include all four groups of practicers of the Buddha’s teachings: (1) monks, (2) nuns, (3) novices, and (4) female novices. In a wide sense of the term, it includes three other kinds of Buddhists: (5) female trainees, (6) laymen, and (7) laywomen.
Sanron school: The Three-Discourse School; a Madhyamika school which developed in China based on two discourses by Nagarjuna and one by Aryadeva; this school was transmitted to Japan in the 7th century.
Sarvastivada School (of Hinayana): One of the Hinayana schools which developed some 200 years after the Buddha’s death; this school holds the view that all things really exist.
Satavahana: the name of a dynasty in Southern India, under whose patronage Nagarjuna spread Mahayana.
School of Consciousness-Only: The school of Mahayana thought founded by Vasubandhu; it teaches that all existences are transformations of consciousnesses, of which the most fundamental is Alaya. Based on Hsuan-tsang’s Chinese translation of Vasubandhu’s Thirty Verses and its commentaries, the Hosso (Fa-hsiang) school arose and was later transmitted to Japan.
School of the Middle: Nagarjuna’s Madhyamika school, which rejects two extreme views of ‘existence’ and ‘non-existence’ and claims that truth lies in the middle.
Sea of Perfume: The sea from which grows a large lotus-flower, which produces Vairocana Buddha’s land, called ‘World of Lotus-store’.
Seishimaru: Honen’s name when he was a child.
‘self’ and ‘mine': A wrong idea of holding oneself and one’s possessions as really existing. Cf. ‘I’ and ‘mine’.
Self-attachment: Innate and unconscious attachment to the false image of ego which is, in fact, non-existent.
Self-power: One’s own power to perform Buddhist practices; it is limited and defiled by evil passions, and so, inefficient in achieving the Buddhist goal; see Other-Power.
Semblance Dharma (age of): The second of the three Dharma-ages; in this age, which lasted a thousand years after the end of the age of the Right Dharma, the Buddhist teachings existed and practices were possible but Enlightenment was no longer attainable due to the declining spiritual capacities of human beings.
Serene Faith: Faith of the Other-Power; shinjin; originally, one of the three entrusting minds promised in the Eighteenth Vow.
Serene Faith of Joy: Same as above.
Seven acts for bodhisattvas of the First Stage: 1. to forbear, 2. to avoid lawsuits, 3. to have much joy, 4. to have much happiness in the mind, 5. to seek purity of mind always, 6. to pity sentient beings, and 7. to bear no enmity toward them.
Seven causes of awakening the Bodhi-mind: 1. The Tathagatas lead one to awaken the Bodhi-mind, 2. on seeing perishing of the Dharma, one awakens the Bodhi-mind wishing to protect it, 3. out of compassion for sentient beings, one awakens the Bodhi-mind, 4. bodhisattvas teach one to awaken the Bodhi-mind, 5. on seeing the bodhisattvas’ practices, one awakens toe Bodhi-mind, 6. after practicing Dana, one awakens the Bodhi-mind, and 7. on beholding the Buddha’s physical characteristics, one awakens the Bodhi-mind.
Seven disciplines: The seven rules of acts for the bodhisattvas of the First Stage: 1. forbearance, 2. avoiding disputes, 3. joy, 4. happiness, 5. purity of heart, 6. compassion, and 7. not getting angry.
Seven elements of Bodhi: The seven factors for the attainment of Enlightenment: 1. distinguishing the true teaching from the false, 2. making efforts to practice the true teaching, 3. rejoicing in the true teaching, 4. eliminating indolence and attaining comfort and relaxation, 5. being mindful so as to keep the balance between concentration and insight, 6. concentration, and 7. detaching one’s thoughts from external objects, thereby securing serenity of mind.
Seven elements of evil: The opposites of the seven elements of virtue.
Seven elements of virtue: Faith, repentance, shamefulness, hearing the Dharma, efforts, mindfulness and wisdom.
Seven factors of wisdom: The seven factors for cultivating superior wisdom: (1) distinguishing the true Dharma from false teachings; (2) making efforts in practicing the true Dharma; (3) rejoicing in the true Dharma; (4) eliminating indolence and attaining comfort and relaxation; (5) being mindful to keep the balance between concentration and insight; (6) concentration; and (7) detaching one’s thoughts from external objects so as to secure serenity of mind.
Seven evil acts: 1. killing, 2. stealing, 3. committing adultery, 4. telling lies, 5. uttering harsh words, 6. uttering words which cause enmity between two or more persons, and 7. engaging in idle talk.
Seven faults: 1. many secular engagements, 2. chanting non-Buddhist scriptures, 3. coveting much sleep, 4. indulging in conversation with many, 5. attachment to personal riches and gains, 6. excessive eagerness to please people, and 7. being confused about the Buddhist Path.
Seven jewels: Gold, silver, beryl, crystal, rosy pearl, carnelian, and sapphire.
Seven Masters: The Seven Patriarchs of Jodoshinshu: Nagarjuna, Vasubandhu, T’an-luan, Tao-ch’o, Shan-tao, Genshin and Honen.
Seven prominences on the body: n both feet, both hands, both shoulders and on the back; this feature is one of the 32 physical characteristics of the Buddha.
Seven practices leading to Enlightenment: The seven factors for the attainment of Enlightenment: (1) distinguishing the true teaching from the false, (2) making efforts to practice the true teaching, (3) rejoicing in the true teaching, (4) eliminating indolence and attaining comfort and relaxation, (5) being mindful so as to keep the balance between concentration and insight, (6) concentration, and (7) detaching one’s thoughts from external objects, thereby securing serenity of mind.
Seven treasures: Gold, silver, lapis lazuli, crystal, red pearls, diamond, and coral; there are, however, other versions.
Shakyamuni Shakyamuni: the seventh of the eight Buddhas of the past and future.
Seventeenth Vow: In this vow Dharmakara promised that, when he became a Buddha, his Name would be glorified by all Buddhas, so that living beings who hear it might joyfully hold it; cf. Forty-eight Vows.
Shakra: Generally known as Indra; the lord of the Heaven of Thirty-three Gods; originally a Hindu god but later considered as a protector of Buddhism and its followers.
Shakra’s pendent mani-gem: The gem on the top of Shakra’s head; said to be the most precious gem in the world (M12,15).
Shakra’s vase: The vase which produces anything at will; said to be a possession of Shakra.
Shakyamuni: Lit. ‘a sage of the Shakya clan'; the founder of Buddhism, who appeared in India around the 6th-5th century B.C.
Shariputra: One of the ten great disciples of the Buddha; he was well-known for his intelligence.
Shan-tao: The fifth master in the tradition of Jodoshinshu; 613-81.
Shan-tao School: One of the three Chinese Pure Land schools; the other two are Lu-shan school of Hui-yuan (334-416) and Tz’u-min school of Hui-jih (680-748).
Shao-k’ang: A Chinese Pure Land master, renowned as an incarnation of Shan-tao; died in 805.
Shila Paramita: The second of the Six Paramitas; observance of the precept.
Shin: The popular name for Jodoshinshu.
Shin Buddhist system: The doctrinal system of salvation of Jodoshinshu.
Shin Buddhist: A follower of Jodoshinshu.
Shingon: The esoteric Buddhism which originated in India, developed in China and was systematized in Japan by Kukai (774-835).
Shinjin: Faith of the Other-Power.
Shinran: The founder of Jodoshinshu (1173-1262).
Shraddha: Faith; pure faith.
Shravaka: ‘A hearer'; originally, a disciple of the Buddha in general; later, a follower of Hinayana Buddhism who seeks to attain Nirvana and become an arhat.
Shravasti: A kingdom in central India; at present, Sahetmahet in Gonda Province. The Buddha often stayed at the Jeta Grove monastery outside the capital.
Shukuzen: Karmic virtue; stored merits in one’s past lives.
Shunyata: Voidness or emptiness; non-substantiality of all that exists.
Sincere Mind: One of the three entrusting minds promised in the Eighteenth Vow.
Single Path: The single path leading to Buddhahood.
Single thought of Joy and Gratitude: The first awakening of Faith, or shinjin, which is accompanied by great joy and gratitude to Amida.
Singleness of mind: Whole-hearted trust in Amida’s saving power.
Six acts of accord and respect: The six compassionate acts of a bodhisattva for approaching and saving others: (1) observing the same precepts as others, (2) sharing the same view as others; (3) performing the same practices as others, (4) kind acts to others, (5) kind speech, and (6) kind-heartedness.
Six elements: The six constituent elements of all existences: earth, water, fire, wind, wind and consciousness.
Six elements of virtue: They refer to the Six Paramitas.
Six faults: Stinginess, breaking the precepts, anger, indolence, confusion of mind, and ignorance.
Six forms of mindfulness: The practice of mindfulness among Buddhists since early days. They are: (1) mindfulness of the Buddha (2) of the Dharma, (3) of the Sangha, (4) of the precepts, (5) of the practice of renouncing, and (6) of the deities.
Six Heavens: The six heavens in the world of desire: 1. the Heaven of the Four Guardian Kings, 2. the Heaven of the Thirty-three Gods, 3. Yama, 4. Tusita, 5. Nirmana-rati, and 6. the Heaven of Free Enjoyment of Others’ Manifestations.
Six kinds of domestic animals: Cows, horses, dogs, sheep, pigs and fowls.
Six kinds of robes Robes made of: 1. cotton, 2. linen, 3. silk, 4. wool, 5. reddish hemp, and 6. white hemp.
Six Paramitas: The six kinds of practices by which bodhisattvas reach Enlightenment: 1. dana (giving), 2. observance of the precepts, 3. perseverance, patient, 4. effort, 5. meditation, concentration, and 6. wisdom.
Six realms The six realms in Samsara, i.e., hell, realms of hungry spirits, animals, asuras, humans and heavenly beings.
Six sense-organs Eyes, ears, nose, tongue, tactile organ, and mind.
Six supernatural powers: See supernatural powers.
Sixth blood-relative: The six blood-relatives are: father, mother, brothers, sisters, wife, and children.
Sixth Heaven: The highest heaven in the world of desire, known by the name of Heaven of Free Enjoyment of Others’ Manifestations.
Skillful means: The skillful means employed by bodhisattvas to guide sentient beings to the Buddhist Path.
Skandha ‘Aggregate'; see five aggregates.
Skillful means Sk. upaya; the method used by a Buddha or a bodhisattva to approach and save sentient beings.
Slandering of the Dharma: The act of the gravest offense which consigns the offender to the hell of uninterrupted pain (Avici); this act includes rejecting the existence of Buddhas and their teachings.
Smaller kalpa: Length of time used to explain the cosmic change; equivalent to the period during which man’s average life-span, which is 10 at the worst time of the period of five defilements, increases by one in every 100 years, until it reaches 84,000; cf. period of cosmic change.
Small Shakyamuni: The word of praise accorded Genshin by the Chinese monks who read his Ojoyoshu (Collection of Essential Passages Concerning Birth in the Pure Land).
Smaller Sutra: One of the three basic sutras of Pure Land Buddhism; also known as the Smaller Sukhavativyuha Sutra, the Sutra on Amitayus Buddha and the Amida Sutra; the Chinese translation used in most of the Pure Land schools was produced by Kumarajiva (344-413) about 402.
Society of Twenty-five Samadhi: The group of 25 monks formed in 986 in the Yokawa precinct of Mt. Hiei to meet regularly and practice the Nembutsu; Genshin laid down the rite for this and promoted its activity.
Space-element: One of the five constituent elements of one’s existence.
Sparsha: Touch or contact with the external objects; sixth of the twelve causations.
Special qualities: Refers to the 18 special qualities of a Buddha. They are: (1) absence of imperfections in the body, (2) unmistakable speech in guiding beings to Enlightenment, (3) perfect concentration, (4) non-discriminative thought, (5) perfectly settled mind, (6) knowing and accepting all dharmas, (7) limitless desire to save sentient beings, (8) unceasing effort to save sentient beings, (9) spiritual correspondence with all the other Buddhas, (10) omniscience, (11) complete emancipation from all bondage, (12) complete knowledge of all aspects of emancipation, (13) manifestation of excellent physical forms to guide sentient beings to salvation, (14) employment of subtle words to teach sentient beings, (15) pure mental acts to teach sentient beings and remove their ignorance and passions, (16) complete knowledge of past lives of all beings, (17) complete knowledge of all future events, and (18) complete knowledge of all events in the present life (L16).
Ssu-chou: The name of the place in the present An-hui Province where Shan-to was born.
Sprinkling of nectar: The sprinkling which bodhisattvas of the tenth stage receive from the Buddhas (L16).
Stage of a Non-returner: The second highest stage of Hinayana sages attained by destroying subtle evil passions; one who has attained this stage is no longer subject to rebirth in the world of desire.
Stage of a Stream-Winner: The first of the four stages of spiritual attainment leading to Arhatship; ‘entering the stream’ means attaining the stream of the sacred Dharma by destroying various wrong views.
Stage of Becoming a Buddha after One More Life: The highest stage of a bodhisattva who will become a Buddha in the next life; Maitreya is such a bodhisattva; after his life in the Tusita Heaven he will come down to this world to become a Buddha.
Stage of Compassionate Guidance: The stage in which a bodhisattva dwells after attaining Enlightenment; in this stage he manifests various forms and guides sentient beings along the Buddhist Path; this is the ‘Returning’ aspect.
Stage of Dharma-cloud: The tenth stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Difficulty in Overcoming: The fifth stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Glowing Wisdom: The fourth stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Going Far: The seventh stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Illumination: The third stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Joy: The first of the ten bodhisattva stages, in which one awakens the pure wisdom and becomes assured of attaining Enlightenment; those who reach this stage are no longer liable to falling back to insecure lower stages, and so this stage is called the Stage of Non-retrogression. Since they attain pure spiritual joy, this stage is also called the Stage of Joy.
Stage of Manifestation [of Reality]: The Sixth Stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Non-defilement: The Second Stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Stage of Non-retrogression: The stage of a bodhisattva at which he realizes undefiled wisdom and is assured of attaining Enlightenment without falling back to a lower stage.
Suchness: See True Suchness.
Stage of Right Assurance: Same as the Stage of Joy.
Stages of shravakas and pratyekabuddhas: The stages of Hinayana practice at which one seeks to attain one’s own salvation.
Stage of Wondrous Wisdom: The Ninth Stage of Bodhisattvahood.
Steadfast mind: A firm resolution to pursue the Buddhist Way.
Suchness: The ultimate reality of all that exists.
Suchness of all dharmas: Things as they really are; in the eye of the Buddha all existing things are themselves ultimate reality.
Sukhavati: ‘Possessed of happiness or pleasure'; the name of Amida’s Pure Land.
Summit of the Heavens: The fourth and the highest heaven in the world of non-form.
Sunaksatra: See Zensho.
Superior supramundane path: The path that transcends ordinary courses of action in the secular world and leads to Buddhahood; Buddhism is primarily the supramundane path whereby one is freed from Samsara and attains liberation.
Supernatural powers: The six transcendental powers attributed to a Buddha, bodhisattva or arhat. They are: (1) the ability to go anywhere at will and to transform oneself or any object at will, (2) the ability to see anything at any distance, (3) the ability to hear any sound at any distance, (4) the ability to know the thoughts of others, (5) the ability to know the previous lives of oneself and others, and (6) the ability to destroy all evil passions.
Supramundane ways: Methods of practice for transcending the Samsaric world and reaching Enlightenment.
Supreme Fruition: The Buddha’s Enlightenment; Bodhi; the final goal of spiritual pursuit in Mahayana.
Supreme King of the Dharma: Refers to the Buddha.
Supreme One: An epithet of the Buddha.
Supreme, Peerless Honored One: An epithet of the Buddha.
Supreme shila: Realization of voidness of everything is called the supreme shila.
Supreme, Unsurpassed One: An epithet of the Buddha.
Supreme Vehicle: Refers to Mahayana.
sutra A Buddhist scripture containing the Buddha’s teaching.
Sutra on Bodhisattvas’ Dwelling in the Embryonic State: The sutra describing the Land of Indolence and Pride The land situated in the west between this world and the Pure Land; those who aspire to be born in the Pure Land are often attracted to the pleasures in this land and stay there, unable to proceed to Amida’s land.
Sutra on the Buddha’s Visit to Lanka: The Lankavatara Sutra; the sutra said to have been delivered by Shakyamuni in the island Lanka, the present Sri Lanka.
Sutra on the Samadhi of All Buddhas’ Appearance: The Pratyutpanna Samadhi Sutra; the sutra explaining the method of visualizing Amida and all the other Buddhas.
Sutra on the Samadhi of Contemplation of the Buddha: One of the sutras explaining the method of contemplating Amida.
Tala-tree: Palmyra tree or fan plam; Borassus flabelliformis. The tala-tree bears big white blossoms, and its fruits are red and resemble pomegranates; bigger ones grow 70 to 80 feet high; their broad leaves, about 2 to 3 inches by 15 to 20 inches, were used for inscribing sutras.
Tannisho: “A Record in Lament of Divergences”; the work ascribed to Yuien which criticizes unorthodox views held by followers of Shinran’s disciples and corrects them by quoting his sayings.
T’an-luan: The third master in the tradition of Jodoshinshu; 476-542; the author of the commentary on Vasubandhu’s Discourse on the Pure Land.
Tao-ch’o: The fourth master in the tradition of Jodoshinshu; 562-645; the author of the Collection of Passages Concerning Birth in the Land of Peace and Bliss.
Taoism: The Chinese religious-philosophical system founded by Lao-tze about the 4th century B.C.; later it absorbed various folk religions and mystical beliefs which were alien to Lao-tze’s original thought.
T’ao Hung-ching: A famous Taoist master from whom T’an-luan received some scriptures explaining the art of longevity.
Tathagata: ‘Thus-come (tatha-agata)’ or ‘thus-gone (tatha-gata)'; popularly construed as ‘one who has come from Thusness or Suchness (ultimate reality)'; used as one of the ten epithets of the Buddha.
Tathagata of All-pervasive Unhindered Light: Refers to Amida.
Tathagata of Infinite Life: Refers to Amida.
Tathagata of Unhindered Light: Refers to Amida.
Tathagata of Unhindered Light Shining throughout the Ten Directions: The name of Amida used by Vasubandhu in the Hymn of Aspiration for Birth in the Pure Land.
Tathagatas’ Family: The abode of all Tathagatas; True Suchness.
Teacher of Gods and Men: One of the ten epithets of the Buddha.
Teacher of Omniscience: An epithet of the Buddha.
Ten acts: Ten acts done by the body, speech and mind and distinguished into good or evil.
Ten acts of virtue for purifying the First Stage: Faith, compassion, love, abandonment, perseverance, thorough knowledge of the principles of truth, guiding sentient beings, feeling of shame, making offerings to Buddhas, and firmly abiding by their teachings.
Ten advantages of wearing the prescribed robes 1. the robes exhibit one’s feeling of repentance and shame, 2. they keep the body from heat and cold and keep away mosquitoes, gadflies and poisonous insects; 3. they show the proper manner of a monk, 4. devas and humans pay respect to them just as they worship stupas and temples, 5. they show the mind of detachment, 6. they are in accord with the way of extinction of evil passions, 7. any evil acts can be easily discovered when robes are worn, 8. those wearing the robes do not require any other ornaments, 9. those wearing the robes readily practice the Eightfold Noble Path, and 10. those wearing the robes diligently practice the Way without the impure minds.
Ten benefits: The ten benefits attending the observance of sila: 1. becoming a Cakravartin always, 2. not losing the mind of diligence when he becomes one, 3. becoming a Shakra always, 4. not losing the mind of diligence when he becomes one, 5. seeking the Buddhist Paths always, 6. always holding fast to the teachings of bodhisattvas, 7. not losing unhindered eloquence, 8. always fulfilling the aspiration to plant various roots of merit, 9. being always praised by Buddhas, bodhisattvas and other sages, and 10. quickly attaining all sorts of wisdom.
Ten Bodhisattva-stages: Refers to Nagarjuna’s Commentary on the Chapter Ten Stages of the Garland Sutra; this work contains his explanation of the first two stages. In the ninth chapter, Easy Path, he presents an easy way of reaching the Stage of Non-retrogression.
Ten dark evil acts: Same as the ten evil acts.
Ten directions: The four cardinal points, the four intermediate points, the zenith, and the nadir.
Ten elements of virtue: Same as the ten good acts.
Ten epithets: The ten epithets of the Buddha: 1. Tathagata, ‘Thus-come’, one who has come from Thusness, 2. Arhat, ‘one worthy of alms-giving’, 3. Samyaksambuddha, ‘fully enlightened’, 4. Vidya-carana-sampanna, ‘one having wisdom and practice’, 5. Sugata, ‘well-gone’, one who has attained emancipation, 6. Lokavid, ‘the knower of the world’, 7. Anuttara, ‘the unsurpassed’, 8. Purusa-damya-sarathi’, ‘the tamer of gods and men’, 9. Shasta devamanusyanam, ‘the teacher of gods and men’, and 10. Buddha-lokanatha, ‘the enlightened and world-honored one’.
Ten evil acts: 1. killing living beings, 2. stealing, 3. committing adultery, 4. telling lies, 5. uttering harsh words, 6. uttering words which cause enmity between two or more persons, 7. engaging in idle talk, 8. being greedy, 9. being angry, and 10. having wrong views.
Ten faults: Same as the ten evil acts.
Ten fears: 1. fear of falling into hell, 2. into the realm of animals, 3. into the realm of hungry spirits, 4. fear of poverty, 5. fear of being abused, rebuked or spoken ill of, 6. fear of being covered by evil passions, 7. fear of falling into the stages of a shravaka and a pratyekabuddha, 8. fear of harassment by devas, humans, dragon gods, and other demi-gods, 9. fear of attack by enemy soldiers, poisonous animals or insects, foods and fire, lions, tigers, wolves, and other people, 10. fear of being confused by wrong views.
Ten good acts: 1. not killing living beings, 2. not stealing, 3. not committing adultery, 4. not telling lies, 5. not uttering harsh words, 6. not uttering words which cause enmity between two or more persons, 7. not engaging in idle talk, 8. not being greedy, 9. not being angry, and 10. not having wrong views.
Ten great vows: The vows to be made by bodhisattvas who dwell in the First Stage: 1. to revere, make offerings to and serve all Buddhas, 2. to protect and uphold their teachings, 3. to praise and make offerings to them as they appear in the world, become Buddhas and preach the Dharma, 4. to teach and guide sentient beings so that they may attain higher spiritual states, 5. to guide all beings ultimately to the Buddha’s Enlightenment, 6. to incorporate all the teachings and dharmas into the non-dual principle of equality, 7. to remove various evils in order to produce a pure land, 8. to do the same acts of merit with other people without a sense of rivalry, 9. to turn the wheel of the Dharma, remove evil passions of all beings and lead them to establish pure faith in the Dharma, and 10. to manifest attainment of Enlightenment in all the worlds.
Ten minds to be cultivated in the Second Stage: 1. sincere and straight mind, 2. fitness to act, 3. a soft and tender mind, 4. a mind to control sense-organs, 5. tranquillity, 6. a truly wonderful mind, 7. avoiding mixing with people, 8. absence of greed, 9. a delightful mind, and 10. a great mind.
Ten powers: The ten powers or abilities attributed to a Buddha: 1. distinguishing right from wrong, 2. knowing the karma of all sentient beings of the past, present and future, and their outcome, 3. knowing all forms of meditation, 4. knowing the superior and inferior capacities of sentient beings, 5. knowing what they desire and think, 6. knowing their different levels of existence, 7. knowing the results of various methods of practice, 8. knowing the transmigratory states of all sentient beings and the courses of karma which they follow, 9. knowing the past lives of all sentient beings and the nirvanic state of non-defilement, and 10. knowing how to destroy all evil passions.
Ten precepts: A Buddhist novice should abstain from the following: (1) killing living beings, (2) stealing, (3) sexual intercourse, (4) telling lies, (5) intoxicating drinks, (6) bodily decoration and perfume, (7) singing and dancing or going to see dances or plays, (8) sleeping in a big bed, (9) eating at wrong times, and (10) keeping money or jewels; cf. precepts for a novice.
Ten ultimate ends: The ten ultimate ends which bodhisattvas should seek to explore by making relevant vows: 1. the ultimate nature of sentient beings, 2. of universe, 3. space, 4. the ultimate Dharma-nature, 5. the ultimate nature of Nirvana, 6. of Buddhas, 7. of Buddhas’ wisdom, 8. of all the objects of mind, 9. of the Buddhas’ spheres of activity and wisdoms, and 10. of the evolution of the sentient world, the Dharma and wisdoms.
Tendai: A Mahayana school transmitted to Japan from China by Saicho, who established its center on Mt. Hiei; see T’ien-t’ai.
Ten titles: The ten titles of the Buddha. These are: (1) Tathagata, ‘thus-come,’ one who has come from Thusness or Suchness; (2) Arhat, ‘one worthy of receiving alms'; (3) Samyaksambuddha, ‘fully enlightened'; (4) Vidya-carana-sampanna, ‘one having wisdom and practice'; (5) Sugata, ‘well-gone,’ one who has attained emancipation; (6) Lokavid, ‘the knower of the world'; (7) Anuttara, ‘the unsurpassed'; (8) Purusa-damya-sarathi, ‘the tamer of men'; (9) Shasta deva-manusyanam, ‘the teacher of gods and men'; (10) Buddha-bhagavat or Buddha-lokanatha, ‘the enlightened and world-honored one.’
Tendai-Pure Land master: One who belongs to the Tendai school but holds Pure Land faith, like Genshin.
The Middle: The Mahayana principle of the Middle; the ultimate truth lies in the negation of the two extreme views: existence and non-existence. Nagarjuna clarified this in his Verses on the Middle.
Theory of universal Voidness: The Madhyamika view that negates all kinds of existence and even negative propositions.
Theravada: ‘The school of the elders'; originally, one of the two major schools of Buddhism in the early period; Sk. Sthaviravada. Later, it came to be used as the general term for the earlier schools which Mahayanists called ‘Hinayana’.
Third Gate: The third of the Five Mindful Practices.
Thirteen contemplations: The thirteen contemplations in the Contemplation Sutra, beginning with that of the setting sun and culminating in clear perception of Amida and his two attendant bodhisattvas.
Thirty-two physical characteristics: The 32 marks of physical excellence of a Buddha. They are: (1) protuberance on the head, (2) hair of the head is blue-black and curling from left to right, (3) even and broad forehead, (4) white tuft of hair between the eyebrows, (5) blue eyes, (6) forty teeth, (7) even and orderly teeth, (8) teeth close together, (9) white teeth, (10) ability of tasting any food as the best, (11) jaw like a lion’s, (12) long and thin tongue, (13) voice like Brahma’s, (14) well-framed shoulders, (15) seven prominent parts (i.e. both hands, both feet, both shoulders, and the back), (16) both shoulders well filled out, (17) fine, golden skin, (18) arms reaching the knees when standing upright, (19) majestic upper part of the body like a lion’s, (20) body like a Nyagrodha tree in circumference, (21) a hair growing from each pore, (22) hair growing upwards and its point bending towards the right, (23) male organ hidden in the foreskin, (24) well-rounded thighs, (25) unprotuberant ankle-bone, (26) soft and tender hands and feet, (27) hands and feet with webs between fingers and toes, (28) long fingers, (29) soles bearing the mark of a thousand-spoked wheel, (30) both feet standing firm, (31) long and broad heels, and (32) calves like the shanks of the king of black antelopes.
Thirty-two rules of conducts: Those who abide by the following rules are worthy of being called bodhisattvas: 1. to seek sincerely peace and happiness for the sake of all sentient beings, 2. to enter the Buddhas’ wisdom, 3. to know whether one can become a Buddha or not, 4. not to bear enmity toward others, 5. to have the steadfast Bodhi-mind, 6. not to make friends with others under false pretense, 7. to become other beings’ friends always until one enters Nirvana, 8. not to discriminate between close friends and strangers, 9. to set one’s heart on doing good acts, 10. not to stop having great mercy for all sentient beings, 11. not to stop having great compassion for all sentient beings, 12. to seek always the Right Dharma untiringly, 13. to make efforts untiringly, 14. to hear much teaching and understand its meaning, 15. to reflect on one’s own faults always, 16. not to criticize others’ faults, 17. to cultivate one’s Bodhi-mind whatever one sees and hears, 18. to give donations without expecting any reward, 19. to observe the precepts without seeking to attain some good state of existence, 20. to have the mind of forbearance with all sentient beings and not to bear enmity toward them, 21. to cultivate all the roots of goodness with diligence, 22. not to seek entry into the meditation of non-form, 23. to attain wisdom of skillful means, 24. to attain the skillful means of the four methods of approaching and embracing beings, 25. to have a compassionate heart equally for both those who observe the precepts and those who have broken them, 26. to listen to the exposition of the Dharma intently, 27. to dwell in the aranya with a serious intention, 28. not to enjoy secular engagements, 29. not to be attached to Hinayana, 30. to recognize Mahayana to be of great benefit, 31. to alienate oneself from bad friends, and 32. to become intimate with good friends.
Those of the middle and lower stages: The two kinds of Hinayana sages, i.e. pratyekabuddhas and shravakas.
Thousand-spoked wheel: One of the 32 physical characteristics of a Buddha; the mark of a wheel on the soles.
Three aspects of Faith: Also Three Minds; the three aspects of Faith of the Other-Power presented in the Eighteenth Vow: Sincere Mind, Joyful Faith and Desire for Birth.
Three aspects of each physical characteristic of the Buddha: 1. the essence of each characteristic, 2. reward of it, and 3. the karma which has produced it.
Three aspects of faith of the Contemplation Sutra: Sincere faith, deep faith, and faith that resolves to be born in the Pure Land.
Three defilements: The three evil passions: greed, anger and stupidity.
Three distinct teachings: The teachings for bodhisattvas, pratyekabuddhas and shravakas; the teachings for bodhisattvas are Mahayana, the Great Vehicle, and those for pratyekabuddhas and shravakas are called Hinayana, the Lesser Vehicle.
Three elements of virtue: Observance of the precept, samadhi and wisdom,
Three evil realms: Hell, the realms of hungry spirits and the realm of animals.
Three faults: 1. hating bodhisattvas, 2. hating their acts, and 3. rejecting Mahayana sutras.
Three gates of emancipation: The states attained by practicing the three samadhis.
Three impediments: Evil passions and various hindrances connected with meditation, and hindrance concerning all things and matters.
Three insights: The three insights into the nature of dharmas: (1) insight into reality through hearing the sacred sounds, (2) insight into reality by being in accord with it, and (3) insight into the non-arising of all dharmas.
Three kinds of defilements: Evils, karma and blind passions.
Three kinds of sages: Shravakas, pratyekabuddhas and bodhisattvas.
Three meritorious actions: Those acts which are conducive to one’s birth in the Pure Land: (1) acts of moral good, (2) observance of the precepts, and (3) acts of Mahayana good.
Three Minds: See three aspects of Faith.
Three minds with which one should practice Dana: 1. Bodhi-mind, because one pities all sentient beings, 2. keeping the Buddha Dharma close to one’s heart, and 3. not seeking any reward.
Three misconducts committed by those who live in the aranya with a false motivation 1. lacking in wisdom if one does not practice diligently, 2. liable to have a sexual intercourse upon meeting a woman and thus face the penalty of expulsion from the Sangha, and 3. liable to break the precepts and return to secular life.
Three objectives with which one should practice Dana: 1. to learn the Buddha Dharma, 2. to expound the Dharma, and 3. to lead all beings to attain the supreme happiness.
Three pains: The three kinds of pain which we experience are: (1) physical and mental pain caused by illness, thirst, hunger, etc., (2) pain of losing something or some living thing one is attached to, and (3) pain caused by vicissitudes of the world.
Three poisons: Three evil passions, i.e., greed, anger and stupidity.
Three realms: The three lowest realms, i.e., hell, the realm of hungry spirits and that of animals.
Three refuges: Taking refuge in the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
Three samadhis: Samadhis of emptiness, non-form and non-desire; in these samadhis one realizes that the dharmas are empty and are not to be grasped as objects of perception and desire.
Three supernatural powers: 1. knowledge of the former lives of oneself and others, 2. ability to know the future destiny of oneself and others, and 3. ability to know all about the miseries of the present life and to remove their root-cause, i.e., evil passions.
Three things one should be mindful of: 1. to be mindful of True Reality when one reads or hears written scriptures, 2. to be mindful of the Bodhisattva Sangha when one sees shravakas, and 3. to be mindful of True Buddha when one sees the Buddha’s image.
Three transcendent knowledges: See transcendent knowledge.
Three Treasures: The Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
Three Vehicles: The teachings for shravakas, pratyekabuddhas and bodhisattvas.
Three vows which one should make when one worships Buddhas: 1. “I shall receive offerings from the eight kinds of Buddhists,” 2. “I shall leave my sharira when I die,” and 3. “I shall make great efforts, attain the highest Bodhi and pass into Parinirvana.”
Three worlds: The three levels of the state of existence in Samsara: (1) the world of desire, which comprises hell, the realms of hungry spirits, animals, humans and some of the heavens; (2) the world of form, which comprises some higher heavens; and (3) the world of non-form, which consists of supernal heavens.
Threefold three thoughts which bodhisattvas should entertain about their wives: 1. think that your wives are impermanent, liable to be lost, and liable to decay; 2. think that they are merely companions to talk and laugh with but not those of the next life, that they are companions to eat with but not those who share your karmic reward, and that they are companions at the time of happiness but not those at the time of misery; and 3. think that they are impure, defiled and detestable.
T’ien-t’ai: The name of the Mahayana school founded by Chih-i (538-597), who was himself called Master T’ien-t’ai; it was transmitted to Japan by Saicho.
Tranquil and extinct: Said of the Nirvanic state where there is no arising and perishing of existences.
Transformed body: One of the three bodies of the Buddha; Nirmanakaya.
Transformed Land: The land inhabited by a transformed Buddha; those who seek birth in the Pure Land but fail to perceive Amida’s Compassion and Power are born in the Transformed Land. In accordance with different degrees of understanding and merit, they see different manifestations of the land and the Buddha. Those who follow the 19th and 20th Vows are led to the Transformed Land, where they are unable to see the true Buddha, Dharma or Sangha for a long time.
Transcendent knowledge: The three kinds of transcendent knowledge attained by a Buddha, bodhisattva or arhat: (1) knowledge of the former lives of oneself and others, (2) ability to know the future destiny of oneself and others, and (3) ability to know all the miseries of the present life and to remove their root-cause, i.e. evil passions.
Tripitaka Three collections of writings; the three divisions of the Buddhist scriptures: (1) sutras, the Buddha’s teachings, (2) precepts, and (3) commentaries or discourses on the Buddha’s teachings.
Tripitaka master: A master well-versed in the Buddhist scriptures; used in China as a title of respect for a monk with an extensive knowledge of Buddhism. ‘Tripitaka’ means ‘three baskets,’ or the three collections of Buddhist scriptures: sutras, rules of conduct and discourses.
Triple-thousand great-thousand worlds: A thousand worlds make a small one-thousand world; a thousand of these make a medium one-thousand world; and a thousand of these make a great one-thousand world. This is said to be the region which comes under the care of one Buddha and its extent is as large as the Fourth Meditation Heaven.
Trisna Desire for pleasure; the eighth of the twelve causations.
True Aspect: A synonym of True Suchness or Dharma-nature; the ultimate reality.
True Enlightenment: The title of the fourth chapter of the Kyogyoshinsho.
True Pure Land Way: The true teaching of attaining birth in the Pure Land and realizing Enlightenment; the teaching of Jodoshinshu.
True Suchness: The ultimate reality.
True Teaching: The true, i.e., not provisional, teaching of the Buddha, which, according to Shinran, is the Larger Sutra.
True Way: Same as True Pure Land Way.
True entrusting Heart: Refers to shinjin, or Faith of the Other-Power.
Ts’ao-Wei dynasty: The Chinese kingdom of Wei founded by Ts’ao Ts’ao.
Turn the wheel of the Dharma: To preach the Dharma.
Tusita Heaven: The fourth of the six heavens in the world of desire; in this heaven the future Buddha Maitreya is expounding the Dharma.
Twelve Adorations: A hymn in praise of Amida composed by Nagarjuna.
Twelve Lights: Amida’s Light is distinguished into twelve according to its different qualities and functions.
Twelve causations: One of the basic teachings of Buddhism; the 12 links of causes and effect which explain the samsaric state of birth-and-death.
Twelve dhuta practices: See dhuta rules.
Twelve distinctions to be made to show how a good or an evil act arises, and so on 1. from what it arises, 2. to whom it arises, 3. by what cause it arises, 4. with whom it becomes the cause, 5. what is the condition, 6. for whom it becomes the cause, 7. what is its object, 8. for whom it functions as the condition, 9. what increases by it, 10. with whom it increases, 11. what loss it brings about, and 12. what effect it brings about.
Twelve divisions of the scriptures: The 12 kinds of Buddhist scriptures distinguished according to different styles of exposition: (1) the Buddha’s exposition of the Dharma in prose (sutra), (2) verses which repeat the ideas already expressed in prose (geya), (3) verses containing ideas not expressed in prose (gatha), (4) narratives in the past which explain a person’s present state (nidana), (5) narratives of past lives of the Buddha’s disciples (itivrittaka), (6) narratives of past lives of the Buddha (jataka), (7) accounts of miracles performed by the Buddha or a deva (adbhuta-dharma), (8) an exposition of the Dharma through allegories (avadana), (9) discussions of doctrine (upadesha), (10) an exposition of the Dharma by the Buddha without awaiting questions or requests from his disciples (udana), (11) an extensive and detailed exposition of principles of truth (vaipulya), and (12) prophecies by the Buddha regarding his disciples’ attainment of Buddhahood (vyakarana).
Twelve epithets (Amida’s): The twelve epithets of Amida corresponding to his Twelve Lights.
Twelve links of causations: Same as twelve causations.
Twelve names (Amida’s): Same as twelve epithets of Amida.
Twelve sense-fields: The six sense-organs and their corresponding objects.
twenty headings under which each of the path of good and evil acts is distinguished: 1. whether a certain act is good or evil, 2. to which of the three world it belongs, 3. whether it is defiled or not, 4. whether it is a mental function or not, 5. whether it is a mental act or not, 6. whether it arises in conformity with the mind or not, 7. whether it takes place simultaneously with the mind or not, 8. whether it is a bodily act or not, 9. whether it is a manifest act or not, 10. whether it takes something as its object or not, 11. whether it is a karmic act or not, 12. whether it a karma-related act or not, 13. whether it is an act following some karmic act or not, 14. whether it is an act of common karma or not, 15. whether it is an effective karmic act or a causal karmic act, 16. whether it is to be done or not, 17. whether it should be known well or not, 18. whether it is verified by intellect or by the body, 19. whether it is to be severed or not, and 20. whether it is to be known or not.
Twenty wrong views concerning the existence of self There are four wrong views concerning the relationship between the physical body and self: 1. the body is the self, 2. the self has the body, 3. the self is in the body, and 4. the body is in the self. There are four similar wrong views concerning the relationship between the self and the rest of the five aggregates, i.e., perception, conception, volition and consciousness.
Twenty-five states of Samsara: See Rite for the Samadhi for (Transcending) Twenty-five (States of Samsara).
Twenty-nine aspects of the Pure Land, etc: Vasubandhu in his Discourse on the Pure Land distinguished 17 aspects of the Pure Land, 8 aspects of the Buddha and 4 aspects of bodhisattvas.
Two bindings: 1. being bound to various wrong views and 2. being bound to fame and profit.
Two burnings: 1. wearing the Buddhist robe with impure mind and 2. receiving services from those who observe the pure precepts.
Two defilements: 1. enjoying various evil passions and 2. seeking to be known to many donors.
Two elements of virtue: Diligence and wisdom,
Two faults: Falling into the stages of a shravaka and a pratyekabuddha.
Two hindrances: 1. associating with laypeople and 2. dissociating oneself from good people.
Two illnesses: 1. arrogance and 2. discouraging those who seek Mahayana.
Two kinds of benefit: Worldly and supraworldly benefits.
Two kinds of pure acts of Dana: One should perform either of the following two acts: 1. both the donor and the recipient are pure and 2. the donor is pure but the recipient is impure.
Two kinds of robe: 1. robes donated by laypeople and 2. robes made from discarded rags, with pieces of cloth patched together.
Two objectives with which one should practice Dana 1. to acquire great wealth and 2. to accomplish the Dana Paramita.
Two pits: 1. abusing and destroying the Right Dharma and 2. receiving offerings even though one has broken the precepts.
Two Rivers of Greed and Anger: Shan-tao’s famous parable which illustrates how one awakens Faith in the midst of evil passions.
Two tumors: 1. finding others’ faults and 2. hiding one’s own faults.
Two vain attachments: 1. to cling to the scriptures, such as the Lokayata sutra, and 2. to decorate one’s begging bowl and clothes.
Two Vehicles: The teachings for two kinds of Hinayana sages, namely, shravakas and pratyekabuddhas.
Twofold reality: When Faith is awakened in us, we realize that we are full of evil passions, karma-bound and incapable of salvation with our own power and that Amida with boundless saving power embraces and never forsakes us.
Udumbara: The tree Ficus Glomerata; the tree said to bloom only once in 3,000 years.
Udumbara tree: the Bodhi-tree under which Kanakamuni became a Buddha.
Ultimate Teaching of Great Compassion: Refers to the teaching of salvation by the Other-Power.
Unconditioned Dharmakaya: a synonym of True Suchness.
Unconditioned Nirvana: Nirvana free of all conditionings; the ultimate reality and non-activity.
Unequaled Light: One of the twelve lights of Amida.
Unhindered Light: One of the twelve lights of Amida.
Unhindered Light Shining throughout the Ten Directions: See Tathagata of Unhindered Light …
Universal equality: Name of the samadhi in which one can see innumerable Buddhas.
Universal Light: Amida’s Light which reaches everywhere universally.
Universal Vow: Amida’s Vow of salvation which aims at delivering all beings from Samsara.
Universe of a thousand million worlds: Literally, ‘triple thousand great one-thousand world.’ A thousand worlds make a small one-thousand world; a thousand of these make a medium one-thousand world; a thousand of these make a great one-thousand world. The universe of a great one-thousand world, i.e. a thousand million worlds, comes under the care of one Buddha.
Unsurpassed: One of the ten epithets of the Buddha.
Unsurpassed Great Path: The supreme Enlightenment; Buddhahood; also, the path leading to it, namely, Mahayana teaching.
Unsurpassed Nirvana: A synonym of True Suchness.
Unsurpassed Way: The highest, perfect Enlightenment.
Upadana: An act of grasping what one desires; the ninth of the twelve causations.
Upaya: Skillful means.
Upaya-dharmakaya: A reconstructed Sanskrit word for the Chinese phrase ‘hoben hosshin’, which means ‘Dharma-body of Expediency’, one of the two kinds of Dharma-body distinguished by T’an-luan.
Urabe: Genshin’s family name.
Uruma: Honen’s family name.
Uruvilva-kashyapa: ‘Kashyapa of Uruvilva'; the eldest of the three brothers of the Kashyapa family; originally a brahmin engaged in fire worship; converted to Buddhism along with his 500 disciples.
Vaidehi: The wife of King Bimbisara of Magadha in the time of the Buddha; in her later years, she was imprisoned by her son Ajatashatru. As she requested the Buddha to teach her the way of salvation, he preached the Contemplation Sutra.
Vajra god: A kind of deva with enormous physical power; a pair of such gods are often placed at the entrance of a temple; cf. Narayana.
Vairocana The central Buddha in the Garland Sutra.
Vajra: The most precious substance and the hardest material; adamant or diamond.
Various other good acts: They come under the following four headings: 1. not to show an abnormal behavior when practicing in a quiet place, 2. to practice the four methods of winning people over without expecting any reward, 3. to protect the Right Dharma even at the sacrifice of one’s life, and 4. to place the Bodhi-mind above any other good acts.
Vasubandhu: The second of the seven masters in the tradition of Jodoshinshu, who thrived about 320 to 400; the founder of the Consciousness-Only school.
Vedana: Sensations; the seventh of the twelve causations.
Vedic discourse: The four Vedas are well-known: Rig, Yajur, Atharva and Sama; the reference mentioned in the Contemplation Sutra is not identified.
Verses on the Middle: The fundamental text of the Madhyamika philosophy composed by Nagarjuna; it negates all kinds of affirmative or negative propositions and clarifies the truth of the Middle.
Verses on the Visits of Bodhisattvas to the Pure Land: The verses contained in the second fascicle of the Larger Sutra.
Vijnana: Consciousness; the third of the twelve causations.
Vikramaditya (King): A contemporary of Vasubandhu and his patron.
Vilincivatsa: Vasubandhu’s younger brother, who is said to have reached Arhatship.
Vimalakirti Sutra: A popular Mahayana sutra which contains anecdotes of the lay-bodhisattva, Vimalakirti.
Vipashyana: A practice of contemplation.
Vipashyin: The first of the eight Buddhas of the past and future.
virtues of Mahasattva Samantabhadra: See virtues of Samantabhadra.
Virtue of Samantabhadra: Since Samantabhadra represents the bodhisattva practice, all bodhisattvas follow his virtue to accomplish the Buddhist practices.
Vishvabhu: The third of the eight Buddhas of the past and future.
Voidness: Shunyata in Sanskrit; that there is nothing in the world which has some permanently unchanging substance is a basic principle of Buddhism; all existences are temporary phenomena arising from causes and conditions.
Vow of Sincere Mind and Joyful Faith: One of the names for the Eighteenth Vow.
Vow of Three Minds: Another name for the Eighteenth Vow.
Vow of Universal Salvation: Refers to the Eighteenth Vow.
Vulture Peak: The mountain near Rajagriha, capital of Magadha in the time of the Buddha; the present Rajgir.
water of eight excellent qualities: The seven oceans surrounding Mt. Sumeru are also filled with such water. According to the Abhidharmakosha, the eight qualities are as follows: (1) sweet; (2) cool; (3) soft; (4) light; (5) pure; (6) without smell; (7) when one drinks it, it does not harm the throat; and (8) after one has drunk it, it does not harm the stomach.
water-element: One of the five elements.
Way: The Buddhist Way; Enlightenment.
Way of the Nembutsu-Faith: The way of salvation through the Nembutsu-Faith.
webs between the fingers and toes: One of the thirty-two physical characteristics of the Buddha.
welcome (Amida’s): Amida’s coming to welcome a dying person.
Well-Gone: ‘Sugata’ in Skt.; a Blessed One; an epithet for a Buddha.
Wheel of the wonderful Dharma: The Buddha Dharma keeps moving endlessly like a wheel; also, like the Cakravartin’s wheel treasure which crushes enemies, it destroys wrong views.
Wheel-turning monarch: The ideal king conceived in India, who rules the world with a special kind of wheel that flies in the air and destroys the enemy.
Wheel with a thousand spokes: See thousand-spoked wheel; one of the thirty-two physical characteristics of a Buddha.
White curl of hair between the eyebrows: One of the thirty-two physical characteristics of a Buddha.
White Lotus Society: The group of more than a hundred twenty men formed by Hui-yuan to practice meditation on Amida.
White hindrance: A slight hindrance to successful visualization of the setting sun.
White lotus: Pundarika in Sanskrit; a person of Nembutsu is compared to a white lotus.
White path: a symbolic illustration of Faith which is awakened in the midst of evil passions.
White twist of hair between the eye-brows: one of the thirty-two physical characteristics of the Buddha.
Wind-element: One of the five elements.
Words on the Dharma at Yokawa: A short but pithy exposition of the way of birth in the Pure Land by Genshin; cf. Yokawa-hogo.
World of Brahma The Brahma Heaven in the world of form.
World of Lotus-store: Originally Vairocana’s land; used for Amida’s Pure Land.
World of form: One of the three worlds of Samsara.
World of Lotus-store: Originally the land of the Buddha Vairocana, but Vasubandhu and Shinran identified it with Amida’s Pure Land.
World of non-form: The state of existence above the world of form.
World-Honored One: ‘Bhagavat’ in Skt.;an epithet of the Buddha.
World-Sovereign-King: The literal meaning of ‘Lokeshvararaja,’ Amida’s teacher when he was a bodhisattva.
Worldly path: Ordinary courses of action in the secular world which are the cause of transmigration of Samsara.
Wrong views on ‘existence’ and ‘non-existence': The two extreme views which Nagarjuna rejected.
Wu-chen Temple: The temple on Mt. Chung-nan where Shan-tao lived for several years.
Wu-ti: The king of Liang who venerated T’an-luan.
Yama: ‘Well regulated'; the third of the six heavens in the world of desire.
Yao-Ch’in dynasty: The Later Ch’in dynasty ruled by the Yao family, 384-417.
Yellow hindrance: The second of the three hindrances which appear when one practices visualization of the setting sun.
Yogacara: One of the two major Mahayana schools in India, the other being Madhyamika. This school, founded by Maitreya and developed by Asanga and Vasubandhu, emphasizes meditation on conceivable objects which represent the reality-principle.
Yogacara-Pure Land practice: The system of Pure Land practice devised on the basis of the Yogacara practice; specifically refers to Vasubandhu’s Five Mindful Practices.
Yojana: A unit of distance in India, said to be equal to 7 miles, or 9 miles; also the distance which the royal army could march in a day.
Yokawa precinct: One of the three centers of Tendai practice on Mt. Hiei; first founded by Ennin (794-864), who lived in Shuryogon’in Hall; Genshin lived in Eshin’in Hall there.
zenjushonin: Previous Head Priest.
Zensho: Was a disciple of the Buddha. He destroyed the passions belonging to the world of desire, and attained the fourth meditation in the world of form. But by the influence of a wicked friend, he held a wrong view and abused the Buddha. As a result of that, he fell into Avici hell while alive.
zenzenju shonin: Previous-Previous Head Priest.