Upasaka, aka: Upāsaka; 12 Definition(s)


Upasaka means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India, Marathi. 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

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

A male/female lay follower of the Buddha. Compare parisa.Source: Access to Insight: A Glossary of Pali and Buddhist Terms

M Person who supports and respects the "triple gem": Buddha, dhamma and sangha.

Source: Dhamma Dana: Pali English Glossary

lit. 'sitting close by', i.e. a 'lay adherent', is any lay follower who is filled with faith and has taken refuge in the Buddha, his doctrine and his community of noble disciples (A.VIII.25).

His virtue is regarded as pure if he observes the 5 Precepts (pañca-sīla; s. sikkhāpada).

He should avoid the following wrong ways of livelihood:

  • trading in arms,

  • trading in living beings,

  • trading in meat,

  • trading in alcohol

  • trading in poison (A.V.177).

See also A.VIII.75.

-- or --

'female adherent'; s. upāsaka.

Source: Pali Kanon: Manual of Buddhist Terms and Doctrines
context information

Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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General definition (in Buddhism)

Upasaka was a man who has gone to the Three Refuges is called in Pali an upasaka, and a woman an upasika. Being an upasaka or upasika amounts to doing a good deed that will send you to the deva worlds.

Source: Wisdom Library: Buddhism

India history and geogprahy

Upāsaka.—(EI 3, 8, 27; CII 3), a Buddhist lay worshipper; a lay follower of the Buddha; cf. Upāsikā. (SII 13), a temple servant. Note: upāsaka is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary
India history book cover
context information

The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

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Languages of India and abroad

Pali-English dictionary

Upasaka in Pali glossary... « previous · [U] · next »

upāsaka : (m.) a lay devotee; one who comes near.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

Upāsaka, (fr. upa + ās, cp. upāsati) a devout or faithful layman, a lay devotee Vin. I, 4, 16 (tevāciko u.), 37, 139, 195 sq.; II, 125; III, 6, 92; IV, 14, 109; D. I, 85; II, 105, 113; III, 134, 148, 153, 168, 172 sq. , 264; M. I, 29, 467, 490; S. V, 395, 410; A. I, 56 sq.; II, 132 (°parisā); III 206 (°caṇḍāla, °ratana); IV, 220 sq. (kittāvatā hoti); Sn. 376, 384; J. I, 83; Pv I 104; Vbh. 248 (°sikkhā); DA. I, 234; PvA. 36, 38, 54, 61, 207.—f. upāsikā Vin. I, 18, 141, 216; III, 39; IV, 21, 79; D. III, 124, 148, 172, 264; M. I, 29, 467, 491; S. II, 235 sq.; A. I, 88; II, 132; V, 287 sq.; Miln. 383; PvA. 151, 160. (Page 150)

Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary
Pali book cover
context information

Pali is the language of the Tipiṭaka, which is the sacred canon of Theravāda Buddhism and contains much of the Buddha’s speech. Closeley related to Sanskrit, both languages are used interchangeably between religions.

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Marathi-English dictionary

Upasaka in Marathi glossary... « previous · [U] · next »

upāsaka (उपासक).—a (S) That serves, honors, worships.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

upāsaka (उपासक).—a That serves, honours, worships.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
context information

Marathi is an Indo-European language having over 70 million native speakers people in (predominantly) Maharashtra India. Marathi, like many other Indo-Aryan languages, evolved from early forms of Prakrit, which itself is a subset of Sanskrit, one of the most ancient languages of the world.

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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Upāsaka (उपासक).—

1) One who waits upon, a worshipper.

2) A servant, follower.

3) A Śūdra, a low fellow.

4) A worshipper of Buddha as distinguished from the Bhikṣu.

Derivable forms: upāsakaḥ (उपासकः).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Upāsaka (उपासक).—m., °sikā, once °sikī, f., lay-disciple (of the Buddha), passim: m. Mvy 8724; Divy 618.13, 17; Av i.338.4 ff., and often; in Mv iii.268.13, description of Rāhula's ordination, acceptance of the first five śikṣāpada makes him an upāsaka, and the further requirements for making him a monk are then stated; f. °sikā Mvy 8725; Divy 618.13; Bhīk 9a.2; °sikī Divy 618.18 (no v.l.).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary

Upāsaka (उपासक).—mfn.

(-kaḥ-kā-kaṃ) 1. Worshipping, a worshipper. 2. Serving, a servant. 3. A Sudra. E. upa before as to be, vun aff.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara 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.

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