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Glossary

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Tantra

Also called Tantrayana (path of Tantra) or Vajrayana (path of Diamond) or Mantrayana (path of Mantra). It includes methods such as mantras and visualizations to work on ones subtle energies directly. Tantrayana is considered an abrupt path to the Enlightenment. It is an alternative to the safer, but longer Sutrayana path.

Tantrayana

Also called Tantrayana (path of Tantra) or Vajrayana (path of Diamond) or Mantrayana (path of Mantra). It includes methods such as mantras and visualizations to work on ones subtle energies directly. Tantrayana is considered an abrupt path to the Enlightenment. It is an alternative to the safer, but longer Sutrayana path.

Tathagata

(skt.: tathagata; tib.: de shin sheg pa) An epithet for a Buddha, translated usually as thus gone one. This title indicates that a Buddha embodies the fundamental truth of all phenomena and has grasped the law of causality spanning past, present, and future. 

Ten bhumis
1. Perfect Joy / Supreme Joy
2. Immaculate / Stainless
3. Luminous / Illuminating
4. Radiant / Bhumi of Blazing Wisdom
5. Hard to Keep / Very Difficult to Train For / The Unconquerable
6. Clearly Manifest / Appearance Stage
7. Far Progressed / Gone-Afa
8. Immovable / Unwavering
9. Perfect Intellect / The Wholesome Wisdom
10. Cloud of Dharma
Ten non virtuous actions
(tib.: mi ge wa chu) These are the negative actions described in Buddhist scriptures as some of the most harmful. They are divided in:
- three negative actions commited with body: killing, stealing, sexual misconduct
- four negative actions commited verbally: lying, divisive speech, harsh speech, idle talk
- three negative actions commited with mind: covetousness, ill will, wrong views
Tengyur

(tib.: ten gyur) It is a large collection of texts, over 3500 books written mostly by Indian masters in Sanskrit from approximately 200 AD to 1000 AD and were later translated into Tibetan. These books are meant to explain Kangyur collection, but also include other subjects such as poetry, grammar, science, architecture, painting and medicine. It is one of the two (or three, if one includes Sungbum) parts of the Tibetan buddhist canon.

Thangka

(tib.: thangka) The Thangka is a Tibetan silk painting with embroidery, usually depicting portraits of Buddhas, deities, stories from the lives of saints and great masters, mandalas, ... It consists of a picture panel which is painted or embroidered, over which a textile is mounted, and then over which is laid a cover, usually silk. Thangkas are usually rectangular in shape. They vary in size, ranging from a little over a few square centimeters to several square meters. A large thangka often takes large team of artists months, even years, to make. Thangkas can be easily rolled up and transported.

Theravada

(tib.: ne ten ma wa) The Doctrine of the Elders. It is the only one of the early schools of Hinayana Buddhism to have survived into the present; currently the dominant form of Buddhism in Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Burma. Today Theravada Buddhists number over 100 million worldwide. The main focus of Theravada teachings is on the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path with the main aim to reach Nirvana for oneself.

Three baskets

(tib.: de no sum) The three baskets. It refers to the collection of primarliy Pali language texts which form the doctrinal foundation of Theravada Buddhism. Most of it has already been translated in English and it contains several thousand printed pages.

Three jewels

(skt.: triratna; tib.: kon chog sum) Sometimes also translated as triple gem. The object of refuge for a Buddhist. They are so named because they are supremely valuable and rarley found. Each of the jewels has apparent and ultimate level.

Three poisons
(tib: duk sum) These three are the source of all passions and delusions. In The Treatise on the Great Perfection of Wisdom (skt.: Mahaprajnaparamita shastra), the three poisons are regarded as the source of all illusions and earthly desires. The three poisons are so called because they prevent people turning their hearts and minds to goodness. They are:
1. (tib: du chag) attachment, desire or greed
2. (tib: zhe dang) hatred or anger
3. (tib: ti mug) ignorance
Tibetan medicine

Tibetan medicine works on the subtle levels of existence in order to remove the causes for gross symptoms of diseases.

Tonglen

(tib.: tong len) Literally it means giving (tib. tong) and receiving (tib. len), so in English it is often called taking-and-giving meditation. This meditation is one of the methods to develop Bodhicitta. It involves your taking other beings suffering and its causes onto yourself when inhaling, destroying your ego, and giving your body, happiness, merit and all the good to other sentient beings when exhaling.

Torma

(tib.: torma) An offering cake used in tantric rituals. In Tibet, tormas were usually made of tsampa, but they can be made also of other edibles such as biscuits and so forth.

Transmission

(tib.: lung) Transmission is usually translation for lung. Although lung has also different meanings, in this case, it refers to oral transmission of mantra or text given to a student by a lineage holder, which is a preliminary to doing the practice. Another meaning of lung is a ritual reading or recitation of the Vajrayana text. The mere hearing of the syllables transmits their inner meaning.

Language

Words of Wisdom

"I hope that you understand what the word 'spiritual' really means. It means to search for – to investigate – the true nature of the mind."
- Lama Yeshe

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