Alms
Alms giving is a religious rite which involves giving materially to another as an act of religious virtue and a symbolic connection to the spiritual and to show humbleness and respect.
Anathapindika
Means, "feeder of the destitutes"; was the chief lay disciple of Gautama Buddha, who erected the famous Jetavanā.
Ascetic
A person who dedicates his or her life to a pursuit of contemplative ideals and practices extreme self-denial or self-mortification for religious reasons.
Atharva-Veda
Sanskrit: अथर्ववेद; a sacred text of Hinduism, and one of the four Vedas, often called the "fourth Veda".
Atman
Sanskrit: आत्मन्; is Self; the terms "soul" or "ego" are also used.
Atonement
Satisfaction or reparation for a wrong or injury; amends.
Banyan Tree
A species of the Sacred Fig under which Buddha is believed to have achieved enlightenment while meditating in Bodhgaya in India. Also known as the Bodhi Tree.
Bast
Bast fibre is plant fibre used to manufacture non-woven mats and carpets.
Being
The Being or One's Being is the mind's concept of the self as a whole entity —including both mind and body —wherein the being is in the mind, and the "body" is all sensory aspects within the being.
Benediction
An utterance of good wishes. The form of blessing briefly pronounced by an officiating minister as at a close of divine service; coming from the Latin verb benedicere (to bless, to speak well of), it is considered something that promotes goodness or well-being.
Bo-Tree
A species of the banyan fig native to the Indian subcontinent. Siddhartha Gautama is said to have attained enlightenment under a Bo-Tree, and hence it is also known as the 'Sacred Fig.'
Brahman
In Hinduism, Brahman (Devanāgarī: ब्रह्मन् bráhman) (not to be confused with the Hindu cast Brahmin) is the eternal, unchanging, infinite, immanent, and transcendent reality which is the Divine Ground of all matter, energy, time, space, being, and everything beyond in this Universe. The nature of Brahman is described as transpersonal, personal, and impersonal by different philosophical schools.
Brahmin
Sanskrit: ब्राह्म; a member of the priestly class in the Indian subcontinent.
Buddha
The title Buddha means Enlightened One or Awakened One.In Buddhism, the Buddha refers to Gautama Buddha.
Buddhism
A religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Gautama Buddha. Buddhism is a path of practice and spiritual development leading to insight into the true nature of life.
Chandogya-Upanishad
This Upanishad is a part of the Samaveda, containing songs (Saman) sung by a singer named, Chandoga.
Compassion
A virtue in which the emotional capacities of empathy and sympathy are regarded as a part of love itself, and a cornerstone of greater social interconnectedness and humanism.
Contemplation
Religious or mystical absorption. The act of holding a thought or object before the mental vision and observing the thought from many perspectives.
Courtesan
Originally a woman courtier, which means a person who attends the court of a monarch or other powerful person
Eightfold Path
One of the principal teachings of the Buddha, who described it as the way leading to the cessation of suffering and the achievement of self-awakening.
Fasting
The act of willingly abstaining from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time.
Gautama Buddha
Siddhārtha Gautama (Sanskrit: सिद्धार्थ गौतम) was a spiritual teacher from ancient India who founded Buddhism. In most Buddhist traditions, he is regarded as the Supreme Buddha.
Gods
Within Hinduism, there are 330 million personal gods, worshipped as deities. These beings are either aspects of the supreme Brahman, avatars of the supreme being, or significantly powerful entities known as devas, thought of as holy, divine, or sacred, held in high regard, and respected by believers.
Gotama
(Gautama) is the surname of the Sakya clan and the name of the historical Buddha by which non-Buddhist contemporaries called him in order to distinguish him from other Buddhas.
Heron
Any of about sixty species of wading birds found throughout the world. They are moderate to large in size and have long, slender necks, legs, toes, and long, straight, dagger-like bills to grasp prey. They also have short btails and long, broad wings.
Hinduism
The predominant and indigenous religious tradition of the Indian subcontinent; formed of diverse traditions and has no single founder.
Holy Ablution
The ritual or sacred washing for the purpose of ritual purification in conjunction with prayer within various religious traditions.
Holy Sacrifice
In Hinduism, sacrifice is the offering of food, objects or the lives of animals or people to the gods as an act of propitiation or worship.
Hypnotize
put in a state of hypnosis (Gr. hypnos -> sleep), a sleeplike state usually induced psychically by another in which the subject loses consciousness but responds, with certain limitations, to the suggestions of the hypnotist.
Illusion
In Hindu Philosophy illusion is used to denote something which is not true and not false (Maya).
Incantation
Latin:cano, meaning I sing, sound, chant; the uttering, singing, or chanting of words, meaningless to outsiders, having to do with magical powers. It is usually associated with magical spells or charms in ceremonies.
Indian Subcontinent
Denotes the region of South Asia, historically forming the whole of greater India or the territories of the British Raj, the region now comprises the countries of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh; it often also includes Nepal, Bhutan, and offshore Sri Lanka. It may also include Afghanistan and the island country of Maldives.
Jackal
Any of several nocturnal wild dogs of the genus canis. They scavenge or hunt in packs. A second meaning is a person who performs dishonest deeds as a follower or accomplice. A third meaning is a person who performs menial or degrading tasks for another.
Jetavana
One of the most famous of the Buddhist monasteries in India, located just outside the old city of Savatthi, where the Buddha resided during the Monsoons and gave many teachings and discourses.
Karma
Actions of body, speech and mind of previous lives that drive the wheel of the cycle of uncontrolled rebirth for each being.
Lakshmi
Sanskrit: लक्ष्मी; is the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity (both material and spiritual), light, wisdom, fortune, fertility, generosity and courage; and the embodiment of beauty, grace and charm.
Lance-bearer
A lance is a light throwing spear, or javelin. A lance-bearer is a person who holds a lance to defend against any harm/attack.
Life
The meaning of life constitutes a philosophical question concerning the purpose and significance of life or existence in general.
Life cycle
Buddhists believe life is not linear (birth-life-death), but cyclical (birth-life-death-rebirth). The whole goal is to attain Nirvana and break free of the cycle of life.
Loincloth
A one-piece male garment that covers the genitals and, at least partially, the buttocks, and is worn for symbolical purposes, e.g. in asceticism to express soberness.
Lotus
A plant of the water lily family; in Buddhism, the lotus is a symbol of the true nature of beings which remains unstained by the mud of the world (samsara and ignorance).
Magadha
The foremost of ancient Indian kingdoms with the capital Pataliputra, a port city on the banks of the river Ganges.
Mara
A Sanskrit word meaning death-bringing or the destroying. It can have two connotations - Mara, the goddess of death according to Hindu mythology, and Mara, a "demon" of the Buddhist cosmology, the personification of Temptation.
Maya
Sanskrit माया; in Indian religions, has multiple meanings, centered around the concept of "illusion". Maya is the principal deity that manifests, perpetuates and governs the illusion and dream of duality in the phenomenal Universe. The goal of enlightenment is to see intuitively that the distinction between the self and the Universe, between consciousness and physical matter, between mind and body, is a fallacy.
Meditation
Refers to any of a family of practices in which the practitioner trains his or her mind or self-induces a mode of consciousness in order to realize some benefit.
Monks
Third of the "Three Jewels" of Buddhism, forming a sangha which is translated as assembly (order). Monks are the followers of the Buddha who leave behind their household and family to become wandering almsmen.
Mortifications of the Flesh
Literally means "putting the flesh to death"; refers to various forms of self-denial or voluntary suffering (commonly referred to as Ascetism). It has been speculated that extreme practices of mortification of the flesh may be used to obtain altered states of consciousness to achieve spiritual experiences or visions.
Mussels
Freshwater clams.
Nirvana
Sanskrit: निर्वाण; the union with the Supreme being through Salvation. Literally means "blowing out" — referring, in the Hindu context, to the supreme state free of suffering and individual existence, and in the Buddhist context, to the blowing out of the fires of greed, hatred, and delusion.
Om
Devanagari ॐ and as ओम्, is a mystical or sacred syllable in the Indian religions. Om is commonly pronounced as a long or over-long nasalized close-mid back rounded vowel, [õːː])
Pike
Any of several large, slender, voracious freshwater game and food fishes of the genus esox lucius, having a long, flat snout and attaining a length of over four feet.
Pomade
A perfumed ointment made from apples; a fragrant hair dressing worn by those displaying wealth who belong to a higher class or caste.
Prajapati
Hindu god personifying a creative force that evolves all things from itself; equivalent to Brahma
Priest
Hindu priests are usually members of the Brahmin caste. There are two types of Hindu priests. A pujari performs rituals in a temple. A purohit on the other hand performs rituals and sacraments outside of the temple. There are special purohits who perform only funeral rites.
Rebirth
Migration of a deceased person's spirit to a newborn body. In traditional Buddhism rebirth can be in any of a large number of life states including the human, any kind of animal and several types of supernatural being.
Rig-Veda
Sanskrit: ऋग्वेद; an ancient Indian sacred collection of Vedic Sanskrit hymns. One of the four canonical sacred texts (śruti) of Hinduism known as the Vedas.
Sage
Wise through reflection and experience; a mature or venerable man of sound judgment distinguished by wisdom; a person looked up to because of their possession of wisdom and knowledge.
Sakya
Sanskrit:शाक्य; an ancient realm of India at the foothills of the Himālayas, in the 1st millennium BCE. The Śākyas are mentioned as a Kshatriya (warrior) clan. The Śākyas formed an independent kingdom . The Śākya capital was Kapilavastu, currently situated in Nepal. The most famous Śākya was Gautama Buddha.
Sakyamuni
Sage ofthe Sakya clan.
Sallow wood
Of sal trees, a willowlike shrub growing about 8 feet high with narrow leaves that are silvery on the underside.
Salvation
In Hinduism, salvation is the Atman's liberation from the cycle of death and rebirth and attainment of the highest spiritual state. It is the ultimate goal of Hinduism, where even hell and heaven are temporary.
Samana
Samana, Samaṇa, or Shramana, the name for certain wandering ascetics from India, one of whom was Gautama Buddha
Samaveda
Wisdom of chants is basically a collection of samans or chants, derived from the eighth and ninth books of the Rig-Veda.
Sansara
The world; in Hindu philosophy ignorance of the True Self that leads to ego-consciousness of the body and the phenomenal world.
Satyam
Nominative: satyam; is a Sanskrit word that loosely translates into English as Truth
Savathi
A city of ancient India, was one of the six largest cities in India during Gautama Buddha's lifetime. The city was located in the fertile Gangetic plains. Jetavana monastery was a famous monastery close to Savatthi.
Sedan chair
a portable enclosed seat for one person, carried on poles by two or four bearers. It was popular in Europe in the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries, having been used in the Far East for milennia.
Self
The self is an individual person as the object of his or her own reflective consciousness.
Self-Denial
The denial or sacrifice of one's own desires.
Sickle
A curved blade mounted on a handle, for cutting grass.
Siddhartha
Siddhartha or Siddharta is the birth name of the founder of Buddhism, Gautama Buddha. In the novel, Siddhartha is a fictional character.
Soul
Incorporeal essence of a person or living thing, which in some religions, is believed to exit the body and live on after a person’s death.
Suffering
Suffering, or pain in a broad sense, is an individual's basic affective experience of unpleasantness and aversion associated with harm or threat of harm; can be physical or mental.
Tarry
To remain or stay, as in a place; to delay or be tardy in acting, starting, or coming.
The Absolute
The concept of an unconditional reality which transcends limited, conditional, everyday existence. It is sometimes used as an alternate term for a "God" or "the Divine."
The Divine
A title referring to the qualities of individuals who are considered to have some special access or relationship to the divine.
Transitionary
Shortlived, fleeting, ephemeral; the river in "Siddhartha" is the symbol of both the transitory and the timeless.
Upanishad
The term Upanishad is derived from upa (near), ni (down) and s(h)ad (to sit), i.e., sitting down near; groups of pupils sit near the teacher to learn the secret doctrine, and mystic teaching.
Upanishads of the Samaveda
The Upanishads have come into existence from four Vedas: the Rig Veda, the Sama Veda, the Yajur Veda, and the Atharva Veda. The Upanishads (Sanskrit: उपनिषद्) are philosophical texts considered to be an early source of Hindu religion. More than 200 are known, of which the first dozen or so are the oldest and most important.
Vedas
Sanskrit वेद véda, "knowledge"; a large body of texts originating in ancient India that constitute the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. The four canonical Vedas are: the Rigveda, containing hymns to be recited by the vedic priesthood; the Yajurveda, containing formulas to be recited by the officiating priest; the Samaveda, containing formulas to be sung by the chanter of hymns, and the fourth is the Atharvaveda, a collection of spells and incantations, charms and speculative hymns.
Veneration
The feeling of awe, respect, and reverence felt for someone held in high esteem. Govinda feels this regard for Siddhartha when he realizes he is the one and true Buddha, and he bows low and swallows his tears.
Vishnu
Sanskrit: विष्णु; is a Hindu God; the creator and destroyer of all existences, one who supports, sustains and governs the Universe and originates and develops all elements within.
Wheel of life
The pictorial representation of the cycle of samsara where all walks of life are represented in a continuous path.
Wisdom
A deep understanding and realizing of people, things, events or situations, resulting in the ability to choose or act to consistently produce the optimum results with a minimum of time and energy.
Yoga
Traditional physical and mental disciplines and meditative practices that originated in the Indian subcontinent. Sanskrit word yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root "yuj," meaning "to control," "to yoke" or "to unite.