from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Hinduism Any of various aphoristic doctrinal summaries produced for memorization generally between 500 and 200 B.C. and later incorporated into Hindu literature.
- n. Buddhism A scriptural narrative, especially a text traditionally regarded as a discourse of the Buddha.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A rule or thesis in Sanskrit grammar or Hindu law or philosophy.
- n. A scriptural narrative, especially a discourse of the Buddha.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A precept; an aphorism; a brief rule.
- n. A collection of such aphorisms.
- n. A body of Hindoo literature containing aphorisms on grammar, meter, law, and philosophy, and forming a connecting link between the Vedic and later Sanscrit literature.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Sanskrit lit., a body of rules or precepts. ; ;
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a rule or aphorism in Sanskrit literature or a group of aphoristic doctrinal summaries prepared for memorization
The Sanskrit word sutra means a theme of practice.
In basic terms, a sutra is a narrative text generally regarded as a discourse of the Buddha.
Red Pine aptly calls the sutra "Buddhism in a nutshell," and "a work of art as much as religion."
So built into the translation process was a kind of orality that would be uncommon to most formal written Chinese, but that would be part of both the Indian philosophical tradition since a sutra is a lecture and the informal tradition of philosophical discussion and poetry-writing that was an important part of the social lives of Chinese intellectuals.
In tantra guru-yoga, disciples need to see their mentors as Buddhas on all three levels - shravaka sutra, bodhisattva sutra, and highest tantra.
-- Apropos of the magical use of the text, as described in this story, it is worth remarking that the subject of the sutra is the Doctrine of the Emptiness of Forms, -- that is to say, of the unreal character of all phenomena or noumena ...
The second wheel of Dharma teaches us the perfection of wisdom sutra, which is a profound saying paying homage to the holy Perfection of Wisdom!
The term "sutra" refers to literary fragments that have descended from the Buddha.
Indeed, in one particular 'sutra' the Buddha contemns such a belief as deleterious to the development of man's spiritual understanding.
The word "sutra" means "thread" in Sanskrit but came to designate any pithy statement; the Diamond Sutra -- more accurately, the Diamond-Cutter Sutra -- was so called because the sharp facets of its aphorisms slice through the illusions of both mind and senses.