Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

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Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby Benjamin » Tue Dec 03, 2013 2:12 am

This is for fun more than anything, but has anyone ever found it interesting that the Arabic word for heaven (Jannah) sounds just like the "Jhana" of the Pali Canon? Considering the spread of Buddhism stretched out as far as Afghanistan, I've always wondered if the nearly same sound was purely coincidental or not. It wouldn't seem totally far-fetched that the word Jhana evolved over time and space to mean a heavenly "place" rather than a heavenly "state" (yes, I know that my translations are crude here).

Seeing as neither Arabic or Pali were written down in a latin alphabet, the spelling (or transliteration, more accurately) is irrelevant - but the pronunciation is practically identical.

I know this is nothing but pure (and more than likely wrong) speculation, but has anyone else thought about this?



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Re: Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby Kenshou » Tue Dec 03, 2013 5:52 am

This kind of thing happens by coincidence all the time in language. The verbal root for "cut" in Japanese and the Australian language Lardil are both something like "kir" but that doesn't actually indicate anything. There are only so many possible combinations of the frequent human speech sounds and it isn't very hard to find unrelated near-homophones.
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Re: Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:48 am

Not for nothing but I don't think the two words are pronounced the same. See (or hear) here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juFqPKzl_Ys. Interesting nonetheless and I have also noticed that the words are similar but am sure it is just coincidence. Be well!
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Re: Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby Pondera » Wed Dec 04, 2013 2:36 am

In Polish, "żona" is pronounced almost exactly the same. It means "wife".
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Re: Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby daverupa » Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:55 am

There was a play on this once with books that took the character of Winnie the Pooh and used him to express Taoist ideas, since the Chinese character pŭ means 'simple' (iirc).
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: Any relation between Jannah and Jhana?

Postby Benjamin » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:43 pm

daverupa wrote:There was a play on this once with books that took the character of Winnie the Pooh and used him to express Taoist ideas, since the Chinese character pŭ means 'simple' (iirc).


The Tao of Pooh? I quite enjoyed that book.
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