Manjushri, aka: Manju-shri, Manjusri, Mañjuśrī; 6 Definition(s)
Manjushri 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.
The Sanskrit term Mañjuśrī can be transliterated into English as Manjusri or Manjushri, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).
Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)
1) Mañjuśrī (मञ्जुश्री) is one of the pravrajita (monastic) Bodhisattvas accompanying the Buddha at Rājagṛha on the Gṛdhrakūṭaparvata, mentioned in a list of twenty-two in to Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter 13.—They were at the head of countless thousands of koṭinayuta of Bodhisattva-mahāsattvas who were all still awaiting succession and will still accede to Buddhahood. He is also known as Wen chou che li or Miao tö .
2) Mañjuśrī (मञ्जुश्री) is the name of a Bodhisattva of the Padmāvatī universe according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter XV). Accordingly, “The universe Houa tsi (Padmāvati) has been mentioned which belongs to the Buddha P’ou houa (Samantakusuma), where the Bodhisattva Miao tö (Mañjuśrī), the Bodhisattva Chan tchou yi (Susthitamati) and other very powerful Bodhisattvas dwell”.(Source): Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
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.
(Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)
Mañjuśrī (मञ्जुश्री) is one of the sixteen bodhisattvas appearing in the Vajradhātu-mahāmaṇḍala, according to the Nāmamantrārthāvalokinī v5.38-41. The Nāmamantrārthāvalokinī (literally, ‘an explanation of the nāma-mantras’) is a commentary (ṭīkā) on the Mañjuśrīnāmasaṃgīti.
Mañjuśrī is a name of Mañjuśrī (the embodiement of non-dual knowledge) and, together with other names, forms the core essence of the Mañjuśrīnāmasaṃgīti. The Nāmamantrārthāvalokinī provides the practitioner a sādhana (‘meditative practice’) to turn these names into mantras. These mantras are chanted for the benefit of all beings, and then placed and contemplated in the Vajradhātu-mahāmaṇḍala, which is an extended version of the Vajradhātu-maṇḍala.
The Mañjuśrīnāmasaṃgīti (lit. ‘chanting of the names of Mañjuśrī’) is a short but influential Buddhist tantra, containing the essence of the teachings of Śākyamuni (the historical Buddha). It was composed by Vilāsavajra in the 8th century and contains 3000 verses in the anuṣṭubh meter.(Source): Wisdom Library: Mañjuśrīnāmasaṃgīti
Tibetan Buddhism includes schools such as Nyingma, Kadampa, Kagyu and Gelug. Their primary canon of literature is divided in two broad categories: The Kangyur, which consists of Buddha’s words, and the Tengyur, which includes commentaries from various sources. Esotericism and tantra techniques (vajrayāna) are collected indepently.
General definition (in Buddhism)
Mañjuśrī (मञ्जुश्री) refers to the fifth of the “eight Bodhisattvas” (aṣṭabodhisattva) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 12). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., aṣṭa-bodhisattva and Mañjuśrī). The work is attributed to Nagarguna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.(Source): Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgrahaManjusri (Chinese: Wen shu; Japanese: Monju), Bodhisattva of Wisdom, believed to have been a disciple of Shakyamuni. With Samantabhadra, he represents the two elemental aspects of Buddhism: Wisdom and Compassio n. He is often depicted holding a sword and/or a lotus, and seated on a lion.(Source): The Art of Asia: Who is Who in Heaven
Mañjushrī Skt. (Jap., Monju), lit., “He Who Is Noble and Gentle”; the bodhisattva of wisdom, one of the most important figures of the Buddhist pantheon. He first appears in the Ārya-mañjushrī-mūlakalpa, a work dating from before the 4th century. Usually Mañjushrī is iconographically depicted with two lotus blossoms at the level of his head, on which his attributes—a sword and a book of the prajñāpāramitā literature—are placed. These attributes stand for the wisdom embodied by Mañjushrī, which dispels the darkness of ignorance.(Source): Shambala Publications: General
Languages of India and abroad
Mañjuśrī (मञ्जुश्री).—Name of a बोधिसत्त्व (bodhisattva).
Derivable forms: mañjuśrīḥ (मञ्जुश्रीः).
Mañjuśrī is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms mañju and śrī (श्री).(Source): DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. 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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Search found 30 books and stories containing Manjushri, Manju-shri, Manjusri or Mañjuśrī. You can also click to the full overview containing English textual excerpts. Below are direct links for the most relevant articles:
The gods of northern Buddhism (by Alice Getty)
Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra (by Vimalakirti)
The Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra (by Vimalakirti)
The Indian Buddhist Iconography (by Benoytosh Bhattachacharyya)
Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra (by Gelongma Karma Migme Chödrön)
Appendix 1 - The legend of Mañjuśrī < [Chapter XLVII - Praises made by the Buddhas]
The story of the gift of Mañjuśrī < [Part 14 - Generosity and the other virtues]
II. The Bodhisattva is able to create for himself a body endowed with the marks < [Part 3 - Possessing a body endowed with the marks]