Dictionary of Key Spiritual Terms

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Wylie | Tibetan


See also atonement, clean, just, perfection
  1. sel ba/ 

    p. bsal/  [lit. to clear, blot out, or remove]

    Biblical: used in compounds to mean complete removal or forgiveness of sins or offenses: sdig pa sel ba/  to forgive sin khyod kyi sdig pa sel ba yin/  your sins are forgiven (Mt. 9:2), sdig pa sel ba'i phyir/,,'gyod tshangs kyi khrus kyi chos bshad/  preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Mk. 1:4), nged kyis gzhan nyes sel ba ltar/,,/nged kyi sdig pa sel bar mdzod/  forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors (Mt. 6:12), sdig pa dang skur pa thams cad sel bar 'gyur/  every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men (Mt. 12:31). Other compounds of sel ba/  indicate clearance or forgiveness of many types of offense: 1) 'khon sel ba/  to forgive grudges su dang 'khon yod na sel zhig if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him (Mk. 11:25); 2) bsam pa sel ba/  evil thoughts: khyod kyi snying gi bsam pa de sel ba/  he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart (Acts 8:22 23); 3) sdig sgrib/  evils, obscurations mis mi rigs par byas pa 'dag cing /,,/sdig sgrib bsal bar mdzad na bde/  blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered (Rom. 4:7 SV); 4) skyon sel ba/  faults ma shi kas khyed kyi skyon bsal ba ltar/  as the Lord forgave you (Col. 3:13 SV); 5) nyes pa sel ba/  transgressions: su yi nyes pa bsal mdzad de/,,/nyes sdig sel ba'i mi rnams bde'o/  blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered (Rom. 4:7).

    Buddhist: 1) sdig pa sel ba/  is to wipe away or remove faults committed through ignorance or imperfect religious practice. The underlying idea is cleaning up or removing stains from something that is fundamentally perfect, as in wiping dirt from a mirror. In Bsm. this is accomplished through religious practice, and it is in this sense that Chenresi or the Dalai Lama are said to remove sins. Prayers for such forgiveness are not unknown (MTB 196). 2) The term is also used of Bst. practice as a means of clearing up or removing suffering: gnod pa dang sdug bsngal thams cad sel bar byed pa/  to clear away all suffering and harm (TRC 330); or clearing away ignorance: gti mug gi mun pa sel ba/  clearing away the darkness of ignorance (TRC 166); 3) sel ba/  is a technical term in Bst. logic, meaning all things except one specified (TRI 287).

    Cognates: 1) nad sel ba/  to cure a disease: nad sel ba'i sman la zhim po med/  medicine which takes away sickness is not tasty (KTM), glog par nang la nad med pa bsal po stan to/  the x-ray was clear of disease (DPD); 2) dka' rnyog sel ba/  to solve problems (DLP 4).

  2. bzod pa/ 

    Biblical: to forgive or pardon offenses at the human, rather than the supernatural, level: 1) normally used of people forgiving offenses committed by others: khyod kyis gzhan la bzod pa byed na/  if you forgive men when they sin against you (Mt. 6:14), snying nas bzod par mi byed na/  if you do not forgive from your heart (Mt. 18:35), bzod pa skyed cig,,khyed la'ang bzod pa skyed par 'gyur/  forgive, and you will be forgiven (Lk. 6:37), khyed tshos su la bzod pa bzhes na/  if you forgive anyone (2 Cor. 2:10), 'gal ba de bzod par gsol/  forgive me this wrong (2 Cor. 12:13), mi mthun pa yod na bzod pa sgoms shig,,/gtso bos khyed tshor bzod pa mdzad pa ltar khyed tshos kyang bzod pa sgoms shig forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you (Col. 3:13); 2) God forgiving human sin: de tsho'i nyes pa bzod bya/  I will forgive their wickedness (Heb. 8:11 12).

    Buddhist: In spoken language can be used of human forgiveness, e.g. a husband forgiving his wife. 1) In Bsm. the most common meaning is endurance: nang chos la gus bkur rgya che zhus pas phrag dog gis mi bzod pa/  could not endure the wide respect and service being paid to the Buddhist doctrine (TRC 114), ye shes 'od thugs kyis ma bzod par/  Yeshe 'Od was unable to endure (TRC 152), sdug bsngal bzod glags med pa/  unendurable misery (TRC 229); 2) patience bzod pa'i pha rol tu phyin pa/  the perfection of patience (KBT 65), bzod pa bsgom pa rgyal sras lag len yin/  meditation on patient endurance is the practice of the sons of the Buddha (GSL 22); 3) forbearance: sdug bsngal la chos shes pa'i bzod pa/  forbearance of suffering (KBT 98).

    Cognates: 1) bzod par gsol/  to request pardon or forbearance with what one has done wrong (KTM); 2) thugs bzod/  an attitude of forbearance.

  3. gshog

    p. bshags/  or gshags/  f. gshag imp. gshog [used mainly in poetry or literature]

    Biblical: to forgive: 1) forgiveness of sins: sdig bshags kyi dmar mchod phul phyir yin/  to offer sacrifices for the forgiveness of sins (Heb. 5:1); 2) atonement: mi sde'i sdig bshags kyi phyir du/  atonement for the sins of the people (Heb. 2:17), khong ni nga tsho'i sdig pa'i sdig bshags yin/,,nga tsho ma zad 'jig rten yongs kyi sdig pa'i sdig bshags yin no/  He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world (1 Jn. 2:2); 3) bshags/  may be used to mean forgiveness generally: khos 'gyod na bshags pa blong /  if he repents, forgive him (Lk. 17:3), 'di tshos ci byed mi shes pas/,,bshags pa mdzod/  since they do not know what they are doing, forgive them (Lk. 23:34).

    Buddhist: see atonement.