Dictionary of Key Spiritual Terms

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Wylie | Tibetan


See also clean, Holy Spirit, righteousness
  1. dam pa/ 

    Biblical: holy, sacred: 1) used of Jesus and God: nga ni dam pa yin pa'i phyir du khyod cag kyang dam pa yin par dgos/  be holy, because I am holy (Lev. 11:45), yis ra el gyi dam pa/  the Holy One of Israel (Ps. 71:22), khyed dkon mchog gi dam pa de lags zhus so/  you are the Holy One of God (Mk. 1:24), yab dam pa lags/  holy Father (Jn. 17:11); 2) used of holy people: skyes bu drang po dang dam pa yin par shes te/  knowing him to be a righteous and holy man (Mk. 6:20), lung ston pa dam pa rnams/  holy prophets (Acts 3:21), sku tshab dam pa/  holy apostles (Eph. 3:5), spun dam pa rnams/  holy brothers (Heb. 3:1). Common phrases: gnas dam pa dang dam pa'i dam pa/  the holy place and the Most Holy Place (Ex. 26:33), grong khyer dam pa/  the holy city (Mt. 4:5), dam pa'i pho nya/  holy angels (Mk. 8:38), byin brlabs bden pa dam pa/  holy and sure blessings (Acts 13:34), dam pa'i mdo/  holy Scriptures (Rom. 1:2), dam pa'i 'o/  a holy kiss (Rom. 16:16).

    Buddhist: A person who is dam pa/  is either an enlightened being like the Buddhas or someone famous who has achieved great things. The Chinese could use this of Mao Tse Tung (AMD). 1) ultimate, real, that which goes beyond mere appearances: don dam pa'i bden pa/  ultimate truth (KBT 44), don dam pa'i chos dkon mchog the ultimate dharma jewel (TRC 75), don dam pa dang kun rdzob pa'i dge 'dun dkon mchog ultimate and conventional jewels of the monk body or sangha (TRC 75); 2) worthy, noble, supreme: dam pa'i chos kyi dbu tsam/  the starting point of the noble doctrine (TRC 112), dam pa khyed/  worthy friend (HTE 170); 3) may be used as a term of respect for one who has died: tshe stan phun tshogs dam pa dgongs pa rdzogs so/  Mr. Tsetan Phuntsog died (DPD); 4) material objects such as the Bst. scriptures are considered to be holy; misplacing or inadvertently spoiling one is considered a karmic cause of ignorance (JPG 220).

  2. gtsang ma/ 

    Biblical: pure, clean, holy: lag pa gtsang ma yar btegs te smon lam 'debs par/  lifting up holy hands in prayer (1 Tim. 2:8), gtsang khang /  the Most Holy Place (Heb. 13:11).

    Buddhist: see clean. Without the error of defilement or moral fault; pure (KTM). Also used of outwardly moral people who do not steal, etc. (AMD).

  3. dag pa/  and rnam par dag pa/ 

    Biblical: clean, pure, holy: khong gi drung du dag cing skyon med pa/  holy and blameless in his sight (Eph. 1:4 SV), lag pa dag pa bteg ste smon lam 'debs/  to lift up holy hands in prayer (1 Tim. 2:8 SV); dkon mchog gis nga rnams mi gtsang ba'i phyir du ma bos kyis/,,rnam par dag par 'gyur ba'i phyir bos so/  God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life (1 Thes. 4:7 SV).

    Buddhist: 1) dag pa/  means purity rather than holiness. Bsm. is a path of progressive purification from wrong actions and ideas, and the Buddhas are those who complete this process and become perfectly pure beings. Hence dag pa/  implies purity of thought, purpose, and behavior (KTM). dag pa bzhi/  the four purities of a Buddha: lus dag pa/  a pure body, dmigs pa dag pa/  pure objectives, sems dag pa/  a pure mind, ye shes dag pa/  pure primordial wisdom (TRI 130); btang snyoms yongs su dag pa/  pure equanimity (KBT 105), dran pa yongs su dag pa/  pure mindfulness (KBT 105). dag pa/  can also imply physical cleanliness or purity: mar gtsang zhing spus tshad dag pa/  butter that is clean and of pure quality (SLR 11); 2) rnam par dag pa/  is a specialized sense of dag pa/  which implies the purity of enlightened beings whose only concern is for the well being and peace of all sentient beings, and never for themselves and their own well being. In one well-known story, the Buddha sacrificed his own body for a tigress so that she could gain strength to feed her kittens. This attitude is rnam par dag pa/ : completely true, altruistic, and pure (KTM). drin gzo 'dod kyi bsam pa rnam par dag pa/  the pure thought which wishes to repay kindnesses (TRC 321), rnam par dag pa'i shes rab/  pure wisdom (GSL 30). 3) yang dag pa/  may mean either: 1) real or actual (in the sense of perfectly understood): yang dag kun rdzob/  real conventional truth (TRI 246); 2) correct, right: used of the elements of the Eightfold Path, e.g. yang dag pa'i lta ba/  right view, yang dag pa'i rtog pa/  right thought, etc.; 3) perfect (used of the Buddhas and their attributes: yang dag pa'i ye shes/  perfect wisdom (KBT 45), yang dag pa'i spong ba bzhi/  the four perfect abandonments (KBT 51), yang dag par rig pa/  perfect understanding (KBT 70), ston pa yang dag pa/  the perfect teacher (TRC 73), bla na med pa yang dag par rdzogs pa'i byang chub/  unsurpassed, perfect, and complete enlightenment (HSU 168).

    Cognates: 1) bsam glo dag pa/  pure thought; 2) yi ge dag pa/  clean, crisp, well formed letters, 3) smon lam dag pa/  prayers which are pure (KTM).

  4. byin rlabs dang ldan pa/ 

    [lit. having blessing]

    Biblical: holy: de min khyed cag gi phru gu yang mi gtsang bar 'gyur gyis/,,da ni byin rlabs dang ldan pa yin no/  otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy (1 Cor. 7:14 SV).