Tirthika, aka: Tīrthika; 3 Definition(s)

Introduction

Tirthika 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 Hinduism

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Tīrthika (तीर्थिक).—Another group of Siddhas that existed during the 10th and 11th centuries was known as Tīrthika Siddhas. They became celebrated for their extraordinary knowledge; fond of debates and display of their knowledge among the public or in the royal courts.

The tīrthikas were distinguished by certain symbols like umbrellas. It is said that once a tīrthika-paṇḍita from the South India was honoured with five umbrellas for challenging Dipaṅkara (C.E. 982-1054), who was celebrated for his scholarship not only among the contemporary Buddhists and others.

(Source): DSpace at Pondicherry: Siddha Cult in Tamilnadu (shaivism)
Shaivism book cover
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Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Tīrthika (तीर्थिक).—The Sanskrit word tīrthika is often translated as ‘heretic’, but tīrthika in fact refers to someone who is on a path other than the Buddhist one.

According to Khenpo Chöga’s Oral Explanations on text section 163: “The Buddha has surpassed all the paths of the tīrthikas. Even when the tīrthikas reach the peak of worldly existence, they can never go beyond the confines of worldly existence [srid pa]. The great masters of the tīrthika systems can reach saṃsāra’s peak but never go beyond that point because they have not realized the wisdom of egolessness. Tīrthika masters can temporarily overcome gross afflictions, but they never attain the wisdom of egolessness. Tīrthika meditation masters at best take rebrith in the subtle spheres of the realms of formlessness [gzugs med khams].”

(Source): Kunpal: Shantideva's Bodhisattva-charyavatara
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.

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Tīrthika (तीर्थिक).—

1) A pilgrim, an ascetic Brāhmaṇa (visiting holy places).

2) An adherent or head of any other than one's own creed; Buddha, Jaina.

Derivable forms: tīrthikaḥ (तीर्थिकः).

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