Glossary of Buddhist Terms

Full multilingual glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T U V Y Z

  1. Nature Body

    The void nature of the omniscient mind of a Buddha.


  2. Nirmanakaya

    The network of grosser forms in which a Buddha appears in order to teach ordinary beings.


  3. Nyaya

    A school of non-Buddhist Indian philosophy that asserts a static, partless, independently existing atman (self) that lacks any consciousness by itself and which emphasizes logic.


  4. Nyingma

    The Old Translation Period tradition of Tibetan Buddhism deriving from Guru Rinpoche, Padmasambhava.


  5. Nyingmapa

    A follower of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.


  6. naivety

    The unawareness (ignorance) of behavioral cause and effect or of reality that accompanies only destructive states of mind or behavior.


  7. name

    A combination of sounds that are assigned a meaning.


  8. negation

    An item, or a truth about an item, defined in terms of the exclusion of something else.


  9. negative potential

    The type of karmic potential associated with a destructive action and which ripens intermittently into unhappiness and the suffering of problems and pain.


  10. ngondro

    Preliminary practices done to build up a store of positive potential and cleanse oneself of negative potential in preparation for tantric practice.


  11. nirvana

    A state of release (liberation) from uncontrollably recurring rebirth (samsara).


  12. noble one

    Someone who has attained nonconceptual cognition of the four noble truths.


  13. non-returner

    A shravaka or pratyekabuddha arya that will attain liberation as an arhat in this lifetime without returning once more for samsaric rebirth.


  14. nondual

    The absence (the voidness) of a consciousness and its object as each having truly established existence, independently of each other.


  15. nonstatic

    Impermanent in the sense of changing from moment to moment, under the influence of causes and conditions.


  16. nonstatic phenomenon

    Phenomena that are affected and supported by causes and circumstances and, consequently, change from moment to moment, and which produce effects.


  17. nonvirtuous

    States of mind, or physical, verbal or mental actions motivated by them, that ripen into unhappiness or the suffering of problems or pain, to be experienced by the person on whose mental continuum they occur.


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