Thai Forest Dhamma

in the tradition of Lungphu Mun Bhuridatto

and his western disciples

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Pali Glossary

The table below gives a list of Pali words used in the talks and documents, together with a brief explanation according to the Thai Forest Dhamma Tradition, so the definition given might differ from other explanations found elsewhere.

Anāgāmi

Non-Returner. A person who has abandoned the five lower fetters and will never again return to this world.

Anatta

The five khandhās (see below) are not-self individually or collectively, nor is there a self-entity to be found anywhere within the heart (citta). It is one of the three universal characteristics of all phenomena. The other two are anicca and dukkha.

Anicca(m)

The unstable, impermanent, transient nature of all things in all realms of existence; in other words all things arise and cease, are subject to change and will become otherwise. Anicca is one of the three universal characteristics of existence.

Appanā

To attain, fix the mind upon. This refers to the deep state of samādhi, also called one-pointedness.

Arahant

A liberated person; an Accomplished One; a person who has abandoned all ten of the fetters (sanyojana) that bind the mind to the cycle of rebirth and who is thus not destined for future rebirth. One who is enlightened; the final stage of the Noble path.

Asubha

That which is unpleasant, loathsome, contrary to what is usually desired.

Atta

Is the opposite of anatta and means “Self”.

Avijjā

Will, intention; not knowing or understanding correctly, but wanting to know and understand; fundamental ignorance; delusion about the nature of the citta. Avijjā is the lack of any knowledge that is higher than the level of mere convention, or lack of insight. It is ignorance so profound that it is self-obscuring, turning everything upside down, it makes us believe that what is wrong is right, what is unimportant is important, what is bad is good. Ignorance here does not indicate a lack of knowledge but rather a lack of knowing, or knowing wrongly. Avijjā is that which must be overcome and transcended to realize enlightenment.

Bhāvanā

Development by means of meditation.

Bhikkhu

A monk, usually in reference to Buddhism. One who lives on donated food.

Buddha

Derived from “supreme knowing”; awake; one who has attained enlightenment on his own, without a proper teaching present.

Buddho

Used as a parikamma (preparatory) word for the recollection of the Buddha.

Citta

Usually translated as the mind or the heart; the pure citta is radiant and bright and is a state of knowingness. The citta of a person who is not an Arahant is under the power of avijjā. As long as there is avijjā there is intention. Intention creates kamma that attaches itself to the citta. Everything originates within this citta first. One can see the citta as the driver or programmer of the body (biological robot). If the citta intends to think or walk, feel, memorize etc., it will do so by using the functions of the body.

Dāna

Giving, making gifts, generosity.

Desanā

A Talk on Dhamma; exposition of the doctrine.

Deva(s)

‘Shining One’ – an inhabitant of the heavens of sensual bliss, which are immediately above the human realm.

Dhamma

Phenomenon; event; reality; the Truth; the way things are in and of themselves; the basic principles which underlie their behaviour. Dhamma is used also to refer to the teachings of the Buddha.

Dhammo

Used as a parikamma (preparatory) word for the recollection of the Teaching (Dhamma).

Dukkha(m)

Disease, discomfort, discontent, suffering and pain; it is the unsatisfactory nature of all phenomena. It is one of the universal characteristics of existence. It is also the first Noble Truth.

Kamma

The law of cause and effect; intentional acts of body, speech and mind which result in becoming and birth. Actions of body, speech or mind that have a content of good, bad or neutral which will bring back a corresponding result.

Khandhā(s)

Heap; group; aggregate; physical and mental components of the personality and of sensory experience in general. Normally it refers to the five khandhās, namely rūpa, vedanā, sañña, saṅkhāra, and viññāṇa.

Kilesa(s)

Fangs or soldiers of avijjā; normally translated as defilement(s). The usual list includes greed, aversion and delusion in their various forms; passion, hypocrisy, arrogance, envy, conceit, vanity, pride, stinginess, worry, stubbornness, complacency, laziness, restlessness, shamelessness, and all sorts of more subtle variations.

Magga

Path. Usually referring to the eight fold path leading to Nibbāna, that is: Right View, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration. When it is used in the combination of magga, phala and Nibbāna then it refers to the four Noble paths – the path to Stream-entry (Sotāpanna), the path to Once-returning (Sakadāgāmi), the path to Non-returning (Anāgāmi) and the path to Arahantship. The fourth Noble Truth.

Mettā

Friendliness; pure love; loving kindness.

Nibbāna

Lit: ‘Extinguished’; liberation; the unbinding of the mind from mental outflows (asava) and the 10 fetters (sanyojana) which bind it to the round of rebirth. Since this term is used to refer also to the extinguishing of fire, it carries connotations of stilling, cooling and peace. (According to the physics taught at the time of the Buddha, a burning fire seizes or adheres to its fuel; when extinguished, it is unbound). Nibbāna is the ultimate goal of Buddhist training.

Nimitta

A sign. In meditation practice, a mental image which is usually visual, a vision.

Nirodha

It is the cessation of dhukkha. The third Noble Truth.

Pali

The canon of the Buddhist texts or the ancient language in which it is written.

Pañña

Wisdom, discernment; insight; common sense; ingenuity.

Parikamma

Preparatory meditation object, that one puts one’s attention on.

Phala

Fruition; results. Specifically, the fruition of any of the four Noble paths (see magga).

Rāga

Lust, attachment, desire.

Rukkhamūla

Dwelling at the foot of a tree.

Rūpa

Form (visible object); bodily form; all material form both gross and subtle.

Saddhā

Faith, belief, conviction.

Sādhu

Reverential assent, meaning it is well, well said.

Sakadāgāmi

Once-Returner: A person who has abandoned the first three of the fetters (sanyojana) that bind the citta to the cycle of rebirth and has weakened the fetters of sensual passion and malevolence, and who after death is destined to be reborn in this world only once more. It is the second of the four stages culminating in Arahant.

Samādhi

Calm, tranquillity, firmness and stability. Absorbed concentration which has many levels and kinds.

Samatha

Calm, tranquillity.

Saṃsarā

The total sphere of all the realms of existence.

Samudaya

Origin; arising. Samudaya-sacca is the truth of the cause of dukkha. The second Noble Truth.

Sangha

The community of the Buddha’s disciples. On the conventional level, this refers to the Buddhist monastic order. On the ideal level, it refers to those of the Buddha’s followers, whether lay or ordained, who have attained at least the first of the four transcendent paths (see magga) culminating in Arahantship.

Saṅkhāra

Formation; condition. As a blanket term, this refers to all forces which form or condition things in nature and to the formed or conditioned things which result (e.g. it is that which puts together the parts that make up anything). As the fourth khandhā, it refers to thought and imagination.

Sañña

One of the mental components, the third khandhā, which is associated with the function of memory, as for instance interpretation, recognition and association. Sañña both recognises the known and gives the meaning and significance which colours all of one’s personal perceptions.

Sati

Mindfulness, awareness, true objective seeing. A moment of sati is a moment without kilesas.

Sīla

Morality, moral behaviour, moral precepts.

Sotāpanna

Stream-Enterer: a person who has abandoned the first three of the fetters (sanyojana) that bind the citta to the cycle of rebirth and has thus entered the ‘stream’ leading to Nibbāna. This is the first of the four stages culminating in Arahantship.

Taṇhā

Craving – the cause of dukkha – which takes three forms: craving for sensuality, for becoming, and for not becoming.

Upācāra

Access. The name of the second stage of Samādhi

Vedanā

Feeling; the sensation of pleasure, pain, or neither pleasure nor pain.

Vimutti

Freedom, deliverance.

Vinaya

The Bhikkhu’s code of conduct and discipline and the books containing them.

Viññāṇa

Cognisance; consciousness; the act of taking note of sense data, external and internal as they occur.

Vīriya

Energy, it is one of the 7 factors of enlightenment.