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N Truth (which tunes with reality)


F Faith. Belief in the law of kamma. Confidence towards dhamma.


N Proof.


Interjection of satisfaction being often pronounced thrice at the end of a teaching or to acknowledge the benevolent character of an action being performed to the sake of dhamma.


[The only once returner]. The sakadāgāmi is the one who has experienced the second stage of realisation of the ariyās. At the most, he will be reborn within the sensuous spheres only once.


F [That which is really possessed].


F [Groups of nāmas and rūpas]. Self-inherent existence of mental and physical phenomena.


[Belief that (diṭṭi) the body (kāya) does host a self-inherent reality- an in-itself (sa)].


M / N Point appearing at the edge of a flat surface.


M [Calm, serenity]. Clarity of the mind caused by a sharp concentration that is the fruit of a sustained training.


M Novice. Young man having renounced, who wears a robe and lives in a monastery, being liable to observe only ten precepts and seventy-five sekhiyas.

A bhikkhu alone is entitled to give the ten precepts. Only a sāmaṇera can become bhikkhu. That's why a lay man wishing to integrate the saṃgha must first of all receive the ten precepts of a sāmaṇera.

The 10 precepts of sāmaṇera
In Pali language In English
1 « pānātipātā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from harming the life of others.»
2 « adinnādānā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from stealing the property of others.»
3 « abrahmacariyā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from sexual practices.»
4 « musāvādā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from lying.»
5 « surāmeraya majjapamādaṭṭhānā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from intoxicating drinks and drugs which lead to carelessness.raquo;
6 « vikāla bhojanā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from food between noon and dawn.»
7 « nacca gīta vādita visuka dassanā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from dancing, singing, listening to music, and watching shows »
8 « mālā gandha vilepana dhārana mandana vibhūsanaṭṭhānā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from using perfumes, cosmetics, and also from ornaments (and anything that bears relation to seduction).»
9 « uccāsayana mahāsayana veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from installing myself in places located on a higher level than the noble beings (bhikkhu, bhikkhunī or sāmaṇera, or older than oneself), or reserved for such beings.»
10 « jātarūpa rājata paṭiggahanā veramaṇi sikkhāpadaṃ samādhiyāmi. » «I will refrain from accepting or using gold or silver (metal and notes).»

A bhikkhu gives the ten precepts. Only a sāmaṇera can become a bhikkhu. That's why a lay man wishing to integrate the saṃgha must, prior to doing it, receive the ten precepts of a sāmaṇera.


F Female sāmaṇera (see this word).

Being given that a bhikkhunī is needed to give the precepts of a sāmanerī to a woman, there can no longer exist any nowadays.

Women presently living in countries hosting the theravāda tradition and whom we call "nuns" are in fact persons who choose to lead a community centred life being taking the eight precepts.

See also the word sīladhara


F [Absorption]. Fact to be mentally absorbed, by means of a very high level of concentration, enabling consciousness to be regularly and a long time focused on an object such as nibbāna or a jhāna.


M [Tranquillity, serenity]. Concentration bringing about calm and mental clarity. The practice of samatha lies in focusing one's concentration on a single object so as to lessen the flow of discursive thoughts, which cause hindrances (nīvaranas), in a first stage, and then to experience a jhāna.

The practice of samatha alone does not lead to nibbāna.


M [Beneficial factor of knowledge (magga)]. Factor of awakening.


F [Proprietor, owner].


F Good, right, correct.


M Community of bhikkhus, established by Buddha.

The raison d'être of the saṃgha is to transmit the sāsana and to preserve it. To do so, the mode of functioning of this community is entirely ruled by the vinaya that the Perfect one has established. If such wasn't the case, his teaching would have disappeared since quite long. It could have never, twenty five centuries after Buddha's parinibbāna, been still brought to the acknowledgement of mankind, neither being practised, nor being realised.

Remark: We most often see this word written as "sangha" instead of "saṃgha". It is however a mistake. In accordance with the Pali transcribing or transliteration, the combination "san" does not exist, or then we do obtain "sa + ngha", which calls for a different pronunciation (close to "sana").

See also: saṃgha


M [Community (saṃgha); at its beginning, its middle, and its end (disesa)]. Serious fault entailing a meeting of the saṃgha requiring at the presence of at least twenty bhikkhus and a reading of the kammavācā meant for a reintegration within the saṃgha. The faulty bhikkhu must be set part from the community for a certain duration. There do exist thirteen saṃghādisesas among which the first five concern lustful desires.

See also: The 13 samghādisesas


N [Good, right, convenient (samma); effort, diligence (padhāna)]. Right effort. The four sammappadhānas are the main subject of the sixth point of the Noble eightfold path:

  • Effort to eradicate the already prevailing akusalas.
  • Effort to prevent new akusalas from arising.
  • Effort to acquire new kusalas.
  • Effort to develop the already prevailing kusalas.


M [The one who has a right knowledge].


N [Good spot, favourable place].


F Perplexity, hesitation. Fact to remain undecided whil efacing a situation.


F General opinion, assent. Permission granted to the members of the saṃgha.


F Contemplation of all physical and mental phenomena in order to know them vividly.


F [Pointless idle talk, vain, stupid].


M [Fact to be continuous, to be produced many and more times, since times without beginning]. Everlasting cycle of rebirths among the four compound worlds that are divided between thirty one spheres of existence.

nibbāna is the unique experience enabling one to get emancipated from it.


F [Constitution].


T Cause of dukkha (attachment).


N Thought, reflection.


F/T Mental formations. Conditioned phenomena.


M Characteristic of mental formations.


M World of conditioned phenomena.


F Feeling of equanimity towards mental formations.


N [Conversation].


F [Characteristic (lakkhaṇā) of the conversation (saṅkhata)].


F [Perception].


M Fact to recognize.


M [Burn].


M [Peace]. Serenity, perfect tranquillity.


F Satisfaction.


N [Good person]. Fair, upright, honest and recommendable individual.


N [Teaching, discourse, message]. Buddha's teaching.

Generally, the term designates everthing that is related to Buddha's teaching, its propagation, its study and its putting into practice. We also say buddha sāsana.

sāsana also designates the period during which Buddha's teaching is made known to beings and practised.


[Eternity, permanence].


[Attention]. Mindfulness.


N [Attention (sati); fact to be sustained (paṭṭhāna)]. Establishment of the attention.

Training consisting in focusing, in a sustained manner, the attention to a set of phenomena, at time of their appearance. The four satipaṭṭhānas:

  • (kāyānupassanā satipaṭṭhāna)
    Establishment of the attention focused on the body.
  • (vedanānupassanā satipaṭṭhāna)
    Establishment of the attention focused on sensations.
  • (cittānupassanā satipaṭṭhāna)
    Establishment of the attention focused on consciousness.
  • (dhammānupassanā satipaṭṭhāna)
    Establishment of the attention focused on mental and physical phenomena.

See also: satipaṭṭhāna


M The whole of beings.


M [The whole of beings (satta); universe (loka)]. Universe where do live the whole of beings.


F Fact to know how to choose that which is beneficial by means of a preliminary reflection.


M arahanta who is still living (before his/her entrance into parinibbāna).


F Seventh category of rules of the pātimokkha. Point of training into the conduct.

There are 75 sekhiyas. They concern behaviour, discipline, self-restraint and dignity.

See also: The 75 sekhiyas


sāmaṇerī undergoing a period of training – with a view to becoming a bhikkhunī.

This training does have a year duration during which the first six precepts must be scrupulously observed. The status of a sikkhamāna is found in-between the one of a sāmaṇerī and the one of a bhikkhunī.


N Morality, virtue, conduct, good behaviour, attitude.

Main foundation of all kinds of practices of dhamma. Without training into sīla, it is not possible to progress on this path.


M Rituals. Ritual practices, ceremonies, recitations.


M [conduct (sīla); observance of a practice (vata); error (para); to examine, to consider (āmāsa)]. Fact to consider that the putting into practice of animal manners and behaviours (such as the ones of a cow, a dog) enables one to free himself/herself from saṃsarā.


N [Rituals (sīlabbata); Eagerness (upādāna)]. Eager indulging into rituals and ritual practices.


F Woman or girl who chooses to observe The eight precepts, by pursuing life in the community. Having renounced family life and worldly pleasures, they wear the robe (ochre, pink, orange or brown depending on the region) and shave their head. They are generally designated by the name "nun".

See also: Nun's discipline


M/N The one whom mind, speech and conduct are completely rooted into virtue, into ethical virtue.


F Building compound found within a monastery and which is designed spot for the performance of certain duties, such as the integration of a new bhikkhu into the saṃgha or the reading of the rules of the pātimokkha, which is made twice a month.


F [Cemetery, mass grave].


N [Sense of hearing].


T [Stream (sota); the one who has reached (āpanna)]. The one who has entered into the stream of dhamma. Being who has totally eradicated the basic kilesās (mental impurities) such as beliefs in the existence of a self-inherent entity and the efficacy of rituals.

The sotāpanna is the one who has realised the first of the four stages that correspond to the four kinds of ariyās. Consequently, he can no longer be reborn into lower worlds and will go through, at the most, seven more lives among the sensuous spheres before experiencing parinibbāna.


M Fact to reach (for the first and only time) the first stage of realisation of the magga kind (sotāpana), owing to the experience of nibbāna.


N Fact to experience nibbāna, for a sotāpana.


N Pleasant, rejoicing.


M [Purity].


N [Happiness, joy, pleasure, well being, fortune, prosperity].


N Emptiness. That which is empty.


F Fact to dwell in a cemetery, in a mass grave.


M/N Knowledge obtained through audition, vision, reading.


N [Thread, Word that explains the meaning]. Word of the Buddha reported by the Venerable Ānandā and presented in the form of discourses dealing with the various aspects of this teaching.

The suttas often come into a metaphoric shape and answer all questions regarding life and the way to live it.


N [Words explaining the meaning (sutta); portion, part (anta)]. Second part of the tipiṭaka into which are grouped and explained all the points regarding the practice, by means of stories. These stories are real and often partake of a metaphorical character.

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Author: Monk Dhamma Sāmi

Date: 2001

Translator: Thierry Lambrou

Update: 2005, June the 20th