Bodhi is both the Pali and Sanskrit word traditionally translated into English as "enlightenment." The word "buddha" means "one who has achieved bodhi." Bodhi is also frequently (and more accurately) translated as "awakening."
Bodhi is attained when the ten fetters that bind a human being to the wheel of samsara have been dissolved; when the Four Noble Truths have been fully understood and all volitional conditioning has reached cessation (nirodha), giving rise to transcendent peace (nibbana). At this moment, the psychological roots of all greed (lobha), aversion (dosa), delusion (moha), ignorance (avijja), craving (tanha) and ego centered consciousness (atta) are completely uprooted.
Bodhi is the ultimate goal of Buddhist life (brahmacarya). It is achieved by observing the eightfold path, the development of the paramitas (virtues) and profound wisdom into the dependently arisen nature of phenomena.
A Sanskrit term used for enlightenment. The term is generally applied to those individuals who have understood the effectiveness of four noble truths and achieved the results of completing the eightfold path.
(from verbal root budhi, to awaken, to understand): awakenment, enlightenment, supreme knowledge. "(Through Bodhi) one awakens from the slumber or stupor (inflicted upon the mind) by the defilements (kilesa) and comprehends the Four Noble Truths (sacca)" (Com. to M. 10).
The enlightenment of a Buddha is called sammā-sambodhi, 'perfect enlightenment'. The faith (saddhā) of a lay follower of the Buddha is described as "he believes in the enlightenment of the Perfect One" (saddahati Tathāgatassa bodhim: M.53, A.III.2).
As components of the state of enlightenment and contributory factors to its achievement, are mentioned in the texts: the 7 factors of enlightenment (bojjhanga = bodhi-anga) and the 37 'things pertaining to enlightenment' (bodhipakkhiya-dhammā). In one of the later books of the Sutta-Pitaka, the Buddhavamsa, 10 bodhipācana-dhammā are mentioned, i.e. qualities that lead to the ripening of perfect enlightenment; these are the 10 perfections (pāramī).
There is a threefold classification of enlightenment:
- 1. that of a noble disciple (sāvaka-bodhi, q.v.). i.e. of an Arahat,
- 2. of an Independently Enlightened One (pacceka-bodhi, q.v.), and
- 3. of a Perfect Enlightened One (sammā-sambodhi).
This 3-fold division, however, is of later origin, and in this form it neither occurs in the canonical texts nor in the older Sutta commentaries. The closest approximation to it is found in a verse sutta which is probably of a comparatively later period, the Treasure Store Sutta (Nidhikkanda Sutta) of the Khuddakapātha, where the following 3 terms are mentioned in stanza 15: sāvaka-pāramī, pacceka-bodhi, buddha-bhūmi (see Khp. Tr., pp. 247f.).
The commentaries (e.g. to M., Buddhavamsa, Cariyapitaka) generally give a 4-fold explanation of the word bodhi:
- 1. the tree of enlightenment,
- 2. the holy path (ariya-magga),
- 3. Nibbāna,
- 4 omniscience (of the Buddha: sabbaññutā-ñāna).
As to (2), the commentaries quote Cula-Nidesa where bodhi is defined as the knowledge relating to the 4 paths (of Stream-entry, etc.; catūsu maggesu ñāna).
Neither in the canonical texts nor in the old commentaries is it stated that a follower of the Buddha may choose between the three kinds of enlightenment and aspire either to become a Buddha, a Pacceka-Buddha, or an Arahat-disciple. This conception of a choice between three aspirations is, however, frequently found in present-day Theravāda countries, e.g. in Sri Lanka.
bodhi : (f.) supreme knowledge; the tree of wisdom.
1) Bodhi，2 (=bodhi1) the tree of wisdom，the sacred Bo tree，the fig tree （Assattha，Ficus religiosa） under which Gotama Buddha arrived at perfect knowledge．The tree is near the spot where Buddhagāya is now，about 60 miles fr．Patna．It is regarded by pilgrims as the centre of the world （cp．pathavī-nābhi mahā-bodhimaṇḍo Mbvs 79）．It is also spoken of as Mahābodhi （e．g．J．IV，228; Vism．403）．-- Vism．72，299，342; DhA．I，105; ThA．62; VbhA．473． --aṅgaṇa the courtyard in which the Bo tree stands DA．I，191; Vism．188 （°vatta）; VbhA．349．--tala “Bodhifoundation，＂ i．e．the place or ground of the B．tree，otherwise bodhi-maṇḍa J．I，105; Mhbv 9; DhA．I，117．--pakka fruit of the Bo tree J．IV，229．--pādapa the Bodhi tree Mbhv 1．--pūjā veneration of，or offerings to the Bo tree Mhbv 81．--maṇḍa （for °maṇḍala） the ground under the Bodhi tree，hence the spot （or “throne＂），on which the Buddha was seated at the time of attaining highest enlightenment．The term is only found in very late canonical and post-canonical literature．Bu II．65，183; Vism．203; J．IV，228，232; Mhbv 79; SnA 2，30，225，258，281，340，391，441; DhA．I，86; II，69; IV，72; ThA．2．Cp．BSk．bodhimaṇḍa Divy 392．--maha feast in honour of the Bo tree J．IV，229．--mūla the root or foot of the Bo tree SnA 32，391; cp．Bodhiyā mūle Nd1 172，458=Ps．I，174．--rukkha the Bodhi tree Vin．I，1．（Page 491）
2) Bodhi，1 （f．） (fr．budh，cp．Vedic bodhin-manas having an attentive mind; RV V，75，5; VIII，82，18) （supreme） knowledge，enlightenment，the knowledge possessed by a Buddha （see also sambodhi & sammā-sambodhi） M．I，356; II，95=D．III，237 （saddho hoti，saddahati Tathāgatassa bodhiṁ）; D．III，159 （anuttaraṁ pappoti bodhiṁ），165 （id．）; S．I，103，196; V，197 sq．; A．II，66; VbhA．310 （def．）．Bodhi consists of 7 elements called bojjhaṅgā or sambojjhaṅgā，and is attained by the accomplishment of the perfections called bodhi-pācanā dhammā （see under cpds．& cp．bodhi-pakkhiya-dhammā）．The Buddha is said to have found the Path followed by former Buddhas，who “catusu satipaṭṭhānesu supatiṭṭhitacittā satta-bojjhaṅge yathābhūtaṁ bhāvetvā anuttaraṁ sammā-sambodhiṁ abhisambujjhiṁsu＂ S．V，160．The moment of supreme enlightenment is the moment when the Four Truths （ariya-saccāni） are grasped S．V，423．Bodhi is used to express the lofty knowledge of an ascetic （Bodhi-paribbājaka Np．J．V，229 sq．），and the stage of enlightenment of the Paccekabuddha （paccekabodhi J．III，348; pacceka-bodhi-ñāṇa J．IV，114; paccekasambodhi SnA 73），as distinguished from sammāsambodhi． --ṭṭhāna the state of Bodhi，state of enlightenment．Dpvs 2．61．--pakkhika=pakkhiya （& pakkhika，e．g．A．III，70=300; Th．1，900; cp．bodha°） belonging to enlightenment，usually referred to as the 37 bodhipakkhiyā dhammā qualities or items constituting or contributing to Bodhi，which are the same as enumd under bojjhaṅga （q．v．）．They are enumd & discussed at Vism．678 sq．and mentioned at many other passages of the Abhidhamma，e．g．Vbh．244，249; Nett 31，197，240，261; and in the Commentaries，e．g．J．I，275; III，290; V，483; DhA．I，230．When they are increased to 43 they include the above with the addition of aniccasaññā; dukkha°，anatta°，pahāna°，virāga°，nirodhasaññā，thus at Nett 112，237．In the older texts we do not find any numbered lists of the b．-p．-dhammā．At A．III，70 only indriyesu guttadvāratā，bhojane mattaññutā and jāgariy’ânuyoga are mentioned in connection with bodhipakkhikā dhammā in general．At S．V，227，239 sq．（so read in Vbh．preface XIV．for 327，337！） the term is applied to the 5 indriyas：saddh’indriyaṁ，viriy°，sati°，samādhi°，paññ°．A more detailed discussion of the bodhi-p-dhammā and their mention in the Piṭakas is found in Mrs．Rh．D．’s preface to the Vbh．edition，pp．xiv．-xvi．Of BSk．passage may be mentioned Divy 350 （saptatriṁśad-bodhi-pakṣān dharmān amukhī -- kṛtya pratyekāṁ bodhiṁ sākṣātkṛtavantah） & 616 （bodhipakṣāṁs tān dharmān Bhagavān saṁprakāśayati sma）．--paripāka the maturing of enlightenment Vism．116．--pācana ripening of knowledge （of a Buddha）; adj．leading to enlightenment Bu II．121 sq．; Cp I．11 （cp．J．I，22）．It is a late term．The b．dhammā are the 10 perfections （pāramiyo），i．e．dāna°，sīla°，nekkhamma°，paññā°，viriya°，khanti°，sacca°，adhiṭṭhāna°，mettā°，upekhā°．--satta （1） a “bodhi-being，＂ i．e．a being destined to attain fullest enlightenment or Buddhaship．A Bodhisatta passes through many existences & many stages of progress before the last birth in which he fulfils his great destiny．The “amhākaṁ Bodhisatto，＂ or “our Bodhisatta＂ of the Buddhist Texts （e．g．Vism．419 （imasmiṁ kappe ayam eva Bhagavā Bodhisatta-bhūto）; DA．I，259） refers to Gotama，whose previous existences are related in the Jātaka collection．These tales illustrate the wisdom & goodness of the future Buddha，whether as an animal，a god，or a human being．In his last existence before attaining Buddhahood he is a man．Reference is made to a Bodhisatta or the B．at very many places throughout the Canon．See e．g．M．I，17，163，240; S．II，5; III，27; IV，233; V，263，281，317; A．II，130; III，240; IV，302，439; Vism．15，116，499; SnA 52 （pacceka°），67，72．-- （2） N．of the author of a Pali grammar，used by Kaccāyana （not extant）：see Windisch，Proceedings of XIVth Or．Congress，Vol．I．290．--sambhāra （pl．） conditions （lit．materials） necessary for the attainment of bodhi J．I，1; VI，595; Mbvs 12．（Page 491）
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