Mahacitta, Mahācitta, Maha-citta: 4 definitions


Mahacitta means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

Alternative spellings of this word include Mahachitta.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

[«previous next»] — Mahacitta in Mahayana glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra

Mahācitta (महाचित्त) refers to the “great mind”, according to Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter 39).—Accordingly, “[The knowledge of the retribution of actions (karmavipāka-jñānabala)].—[...] [How can the mind at death, which lasts only a short time, prevail over the power of actions that extend over an entire lifetime?]—Although this mind may be very short, its power is intense. It is like fire or poison that, although small, can accomplish great things. The mind at death is so determinate and so strong that it prevails over the power of action extending over a century. This last mind is called ‘the great mind’ (mahācitta) for it has, as its urgent task, the abandoning of the body (svadeha-parityāga) and the organs Thus the man in battle (raṇa), who does not spare his life, is called a hero (śūra), and the Arhat, who gives up attachment to life, attains Arhat-hood [...]”.

Mahayana book cover
context information

Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Mahacitta in Sanskrit glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

1) Mahācitta (महाचित्त):—[=mahā-citta] [from mahā > mah] [gana] sutaṃgamādi

2) Mahācittā (महाचित्ता):—[=mahā-cittā] [from mahā-citta > mahā > mah] f. Name of an Apsaras, [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

[Sanskrit to German]

Mahacitta in German

context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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