Prajnaparamita, aka: Prajna-paramita, Prajñāpāramitā; 6 Definition(s)

Introduction

Prajnaparamita 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.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

1) Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता) refers to the “virtue of wisdom” and represents one of the six perfections (pāramitā). How does the Bodhisattva fulfill the virtue of wisdom (prajñāpāramitā)? Answer: When his great mind reflects (manasikaroti) and analyses (vibhanakti). Thus the Brahmin Govinda, the great minister (mahāmātya), divided the great earth (mahāpṛthivī) of Jambudvīpa into seven parts; he also divided into seven parts a determined number of large and small cities (nagara), of villages (nigama) and hamlets (antarāpaṇa). Such is the virtue of wisdom.

2) Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता), also called “knowledge of all the aspects” (sarvākārajñāna), is the knowledge of the true nature (dharmatā, dharmadhātu) of things, whose ‘sole characteristic is the absence of characteristics’. All beings (sattva), including the Bodhisattvas and the Buddhas, are empty of ‘me’ and ‘mine’ (ātmātmīyaśūnyatā), all phenomena (dharma) are empty of inherent nature and specific nature and, consequently, without origination or cessation.

The Prajñāpāramitās are of two kinds:

  1. those that are addressed both to the śrāvakas and to the Bodhisattvas and Devas;
  2. those that concern Bodhisattvas possessing the ten bhūmis exclusively.

3) Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता) is said to give birth to the Buddhas according to appendix 9 of the Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter VII).—“All the Tathāgatas depend on the profound Prajñāpāramitā to realize (sākṣātkāra) the true nature (tathatā), the summit (niṣṭhā) of all dharmas and attain anuttara-samyaksaṃbodhi. That is why it is said that the profound Prajñāpāramitā gives birth to the Buddhas, is ‘the Mother of the Buddhas’”.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
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.

General definition (in Buddhism)

Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता) or simply prajñā refers to the “perfection of wisdom” and represents the last of the “six perferctions” (ṣaṭpāramitā) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 17). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., ṣaṣ-pāramitā and prajñā-pāramitā). The work is attributed to Nagarjuna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Prajñāpāramitā forms, besides a part of the “six perferctions” (ṣaṭpāramitā), also a part of the “ten perfections” (daśa-pāramitā).

(Source): Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

The word Prajñāpāramitā combines the Sanskrit words prajñā (wisdom) with pāramitā (perfection). Prajñāpāramitā is a central concept in Mahāyāna Buddhism and its practice and understanding are taken to be indispensable elements of the Bodhisattva Path. The practice of Prajñāpāramitā is elucidated and described in the genre of the Prajñāpāramitā sūtras, which vary widely in length and exhaustiveness. The Perfection of Wisdom Sutras suggest that all things, including oneself, appear as thoughtforms (conceptual constructs). The earliest Mahayana Sutras were of the Prajñāpāramitā type.

Prajñāpāramitā (Sanskrit: प्रज्ञापारमिता) in Buddhism, means "the Perfection of (Transcendent) Wisdom.")

(Source): WikiPedia: Buddhism

Prajñāpāramitā is a Sanskrit term used in Buddhism that translates roughly into English as the "Perfection of Transcendent Wisdom." Prajñāpāramitā is a central concept in Mahāyāna Buddhism and its practice and understanding are taken to be indispensable elements of the Bodhisattva Path. The practice of Prajñāpāramitā is elucidated and described in the genre of the Prajñāpāramitā sūtras, which vary widely in length and exhaustiveness.

Prajñāpāramitā is a generic term for a series of Mahāyāna texts known as the "Perfection of Wisdom" discourses. These texts, the earliest of which date around the 1st century BCE, are among the first known Mahāyāna literature, and are aptly named, due to their special interest in the understanding of the nature of wisdom or prajñā.

Western scholars often consider the earliest sūtra in the Prajñāpāramitā class to be the Aṣṭasāhasrikā Prajñāpāramitā Sūtra or "Perfection of Wisdom in 8,000 Lines", which was probably put in writing in the 1st century BCE.

(Source): wiki100k: Perfection of Wisdom

Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता) or Parṇaśavarī refers to the fifth of “seven days” (saptavāra) classified as a dhāraṇī according to a 17th-century Sanskrit manuscript from Nepal .—This collection associates each dhāraṇī with a specific day of the week, a tradition going back to at least the sixteenth century in Nepal.

(Source): Cambridge Digital Library: Pañcarakṣā, Saptavāra

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता).—one of the transcendent virtues; Buddh.

Prajñāpāramitā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms prajñā and pāramitā (पारमिता).

(Source): DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
context information

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.

Relevant definitions

Search found 153 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Paramita
paramīta (परमीत).—f n Measure, magnitude.
Prajna
Prajñā (प्रज्ञा).—9 U.1) To know, know about, be acquainted with.2) To be aware of, find out.3)...
Danaparamita
Dānapāramitā (दानपारमिता) or simply dāna refers to the “perfection of generosity” and represent...
Kshantiparamita
Kṣāntipāramitā (क्षान्तिपारमिता) or simply kṣānti refers to the “perfection of patience” and re...
Dhyanaparamita
Dhyānapāramitā (ध्यानपारमिता) or simply dhyāna refers to the “perfection of meditation” and rep...
Shilaparamita
Śīlapāramitā (शीलपारमिता) or simply śīla refers to the “perfection of virtue” and represents th...
Viryaparamita
Vīryapāramitā (वीर्यपारमिता) or simply vīrya refers to the “perfection of energy” and represent...
Prajnacakshus
Prajñācakṣus (प्रज्ञाचक्षुस्) or simply Prajñā refers to the ”divine eye“ and represents one th...
Prajnaparamitasutra
Prajñāpāramitā-sūtra also Mahāprajñāpā­ramitā-sūtra, Skt., lit., “[Great] Sūtra of the W...
Dashaparamita
Daśapāramitā (दशपारमिता) refers to the “ten perferctions” as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (se...
Shatparamita
Ṣaṭpāramitā (षट्पारमिता) refers to the “six perferctions” as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (se...
Balaparamita
Balapāramitā (बलपारमिता) or simply bala refers to the “perfection of strength” and represents t...
Bhavanamayiprajna
Bhāvanāmayīprajñā (भावनामयीप्रज्ञा) or simply Bhāvanāmayī refers to “[wisdom gained] by way of ...
Prajnabala
Prajñābala (प्रज्ञाबल) or simply Prajñā refers to the “strength of wisdom” and represents one o...
Shrutamayiprajna
Śrutamayīprajñā (श्रुतमयीप्रज्ञा) or simply Śrutamayī refers to “[wisdom gained] by way of lear...

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