Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible in order to double-check alignment to Theravāda orthodoxy.
Post Reply
newbee
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 12:13 pm

Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by newbee » Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/aut ... wayof.html

..in attending to the phenomena of mind and body summed up in the "four arousings of mindfulness": body, feelings, consciousness, and mental objects.

Earnestness may also be explained, as it has been by some, as the four mental aggregates of feeling, perception, consciousness and formations, proceeding with application of mindfulness and clear comprehension [satisampajaññayogena pavatta cattaro arupino khandha appamado].

This group of materiality is that of the pure octad consisting of the Four Great Primaries [mahabhuta] symbolized by earth, water, fire and air, and the four derived from these: color, smell, taste and nutritive essence [pathavi apo tejo vayo vanna gandha rasa oja].
In the discourses I am reading there are terms or concepts I don't know or don't know the Buddhist meanings/interpretation. These concepts I guess are explained elsewhere and may be it is assumed that the reader of the Suttas already knows them.

I am looking for a book(s)/resources that present definitions and explanations of basic/core/important terms and also theories of Buddhism. Please suggest user-friendly, comprehensive resources on Buddhist (meditation-oriented) philosophy for beginners.

User avatar
Sam Vara
Posts: 4639
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 5:42 pm
Location: Sussex, U.K.

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Oct 27, 2018 7:10 pm

You have linked to Access to Insight, and they provide a basic glossary:

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/glossary.html

as well as introductory articles.

Bhikkhu Bodhi's collections of the suttas published by Wisdom Publications (sorry, they are a bit expensive!) have glossaries, as well as good introductory material summarising themes for each nikaya.

I have also found Wikipedia to be useful for looking up the meaning(s) for particular concepts, providing one treats it with care.

In this section of this site you will also find a lot of resources linked.

User avatar
DooDoot
Posts: 3302
Joined: Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by DooDoot » Sat Oct 27, 2018 8:28 pm

newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
the "four arousings of mindfulness": body, feelings, consciousness, and mental objects.
All Buddhists do not agree on the meaning of the translation highlighted above therefore asking for a "book" won't really help because the various book authors provide different definitions. The four Pali words highlighted above are kaya, vedana, citta and dhamma.

1. "Kaya" means "group" or "collection" (of the five aggregates). It generally emphasizes the collection of elements that comprises of the physical body (such as the breathing and flesh physical body, together called "rupa") but also includes how the mental aggegates interact and operate with the physical body. Because it includes both the physical and mental, it is called "kaya" (however, as I explained, the emphasis is upon the physical aspect).

2. Feelings are straightforward. No book authors disagree here.

3. Citta does not mean "consciousness". It means "mind-heart". Citta is that mentality that generates & is defiled by greed, hatred and delusion (where as consciousness refers to the knowing or cognising of things). Citta definitely does not mean "consciousness", here. "Consciousness" is not "citta" but instead consciousness is something that knows the citta. "Citta" is a sense object while consciousness knows the citta as a sense object.

4. Dhamma can mean "phenomena", "mental objects", "teachings", "law", "truth", "principles (of law, teachings)". Therefore, the authors of books differ in their definition of "dhamma" here.
newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
the four mental aggregates of feeling, perception, consciousness and formations, proceeding with application of mindfulness and clear comprehension [satisampajaññayogena pavatta cattaro arupino khandha appamado].
Definitions of the four mental aggregates can be found in the Pali suttas, such as in MN 43 and SN 22.79.
newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
This group of materiality is that of the pure octad consisting of the Four Great Primaries [mahabhuta] symbolized by earth, water, fire and air, and the four derived from these: color, smell, taste and nutritive essence [pathavi apo tejo vayo vanna gandha rasa oja].
Definitions of the elements of earth, wind, fire and water can be found in the Pali suttas, such as in MN 62.

User avatar
Mkoll
Posts: 6462
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 6:55 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by Mkoll » Sun Oct 28, 2018 8:28 am

The Buddhist Dictionary by Venerable Nyanatiloka is a great resource. You can buy a book and read it online, such as here.

A good structured introduction to the Buddha's teachings in general is In the Buddha's Words by Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi. You can buy the book and read much of it online. There is a thread on it on this forum here.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

newbee
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 12:13 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by newbee » Sun Oct 28, 2018 1:45 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 7:10 pm
You have linked to Access to Insight, and they provide a basic glossary:

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/glossary.html

as well as introductory articles.

Bhikkhu Bodhi's collections of the suttas published by Wisdom Publications (sorry, they are a bit expensive!) have glossaries, as well as good introductory material summarising themes for each nikaya.

I have also found Wikipedia to be useful for looking up the meaning(s) for particular concepts, providing one treats it with care.

In this section of this site you will also find a lot of resources linked.
Thank you Sam Vara. :smile:

newbee
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 12:13 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by newbee » Sun Oct 28, 2018 1:46 pm

DooDoot wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 8:28 pm
newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
the "four arousings of mindfulness": body, feelings, consciousness, and mental objects.
All Buddhists do not agree on the meaning of the translation highlighted above therefore asking for a "book" won't really help because the various book authors provide different definitions. The four Pali words highlighted above are kaya, vedana, citta and dhamma.

1. "Kaya" means "group" or "collection" (of the five aggregates). It generally emphasizes the collection of elements that comprises of the physical body (such as the breathing and flesh physical body, together called "rupa") but also includes how the mental aggegates interact and operate with the physical body. Because it includes both the physical and mental, it is called "kaya" (however, as I explained, the emphasis is upon the physical aspect).

2. Feelings are straightforward. No book authors disagree here.

3. Citta does not mean "consciousness". It means "mind-heart". Citta is that mentality that generates & is defiled by greed, hatred and delusion (where as consciousness refers to the knowing or cognising of things). Citta definitely does not mean "consciousness", here. "Consciousness" is not "citta" but instead consciousness is something that knows the citta. "Citta" is a sense object while consciousness knows the citta as a sense object.

4. Dhamma can mean "phenomena", "mental objects", "teachings", "law", "truth", "principles (of law, teachings)". Therefore, the authors of books differ in their definition of "dhamma" here.
newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
the four mental aggregates of feeling, perception, consciousness and formations, proceeding with application of mindfulness and clear comprehension [satisampajaññayogena pavatta cattaro arupino khandha appamado].
Definitions of the four mental aggregates can be found in the Pali suttas, such as in MN 43 and SN 22.79.
newbee post_490806 wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 5:07 pm
This group of materiality is that of the pure octad consisting of the Four Great Primaries [mahabhuta] symbolized by earth, water, fire and air, and the four derived from these: color, smell, taste and nutritive essence [pathavi apo tejo vayo vanna gandha rasa oja].
Definitions of the elements of earth, wind, fire and water can be found in the Pali suttas, such as in MN 62.
:goodpost:

Thank you very much for explaning these terms.

newbee
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2018 12:13 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by newbee » Sun Oct 28, 2018 1:47 pm

Mkoll wrote:
Sun Oct 28, 2018 8:28 am
The Buddhist Dictionary by Venerable Nyanatiloka is a great resource. You can buy a book and read it online, such as here.

A good structured introduction to the Buddha's teachings in general is In the Buddha's Words by Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi. You can buy the book and read much of it online. There is a thread on it on this forum here.
Mkoll, thank you. :thumbsup:

rightviewftw
Posts: 2219
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:50 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by rightviewftw » Mon Oct 29, 2018 6:11 am

Feeling is defined as twofold mental and bodily, threefold as unpleasant, pleasant and neither pleasant nor unpleasant.

Feeling is associated with contact between Form, Form derived from Form and Consciousness at a particular sense-base, therefore there are six classes of feeling-contact; Feeling born of eye-contact,... ear-contact,... intellect-contact,... nose-contact,... bodily-contact,... tongue-contact

Feeling is that which feels, feels pain, pleasure, neither pleasure nor pain. Consciousness is that which cognizes, cognizes pain, cognizes pleasure, cognizes neither pleasure nor pain. Perception is that which perceives.... These terms are conjoined, that which is felt is perceived, what is perceived is cognized.

So consciousness is also of six classes; eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, intellect consciousness, nose-consciousness, body-consciousness and tongue-consciousness.

Likewise with perception, six classes of perception; perception of sights, perception of sounds, perception of ideas, perception of smell, perception of bodily sensations and perception of tastes.

Formations in the context of the Aggregates are defined as intentions and is also of six classes; intention with regard to form, intention with regard to sound, intention with regard to smell, intention with regard to taste, intention with regard to tactile sensation, intention with regard to ideas.

When the various external and internal forms, intentions, perceptions, consciousnesss and feelings are taken as six groups of past, present and future classes; they are then referred to as Aggregates or Groups

Four Great Primaries;

As i understand the elements refer to properties of form, earth-property, fire-property, air-property and air-property. IE whatever is fiery, fire-like that is the fire element therein.

As far as i know form associated with the landing of consciousness is called form derived from the primaries, ie the ear, the nose etc and is referred to as Internal Sense medium. Whereas the External Sense mediums are blatant forms; ie sound, aroma
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

rightviewftw
Posts: 2219
Joined: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:50 pm

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by rightviewftw » Mon Oct 29, 2018 6:14 am

sources;
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html

One can often find definitions to various terms by using google, ie;
What is discernment Sutta
etc

When one gets quite familiar with the way questions are posed in the Sutta it is quite easy to find the definitions of the various terms.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

SarathW
Posts: 10517
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:49 am

Re: Books/resources on Buddhist Philosophy/Terminology for beginners

Post by SarathW » Mon Oct 29, 2018 7:39 am

Manual of Buddhist Terms and Doctrines,
by NYANATILOKA MAHATHERA

https://www.budsas.org/ebud/bud-dict/dic_idx.htm
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 24 guests