Chinese term for Theravada?

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Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby BudSas » Wed Nov 25, 2009 5:42 am

Hi Ven Pannasikhara and other Chinese reader friends,

While reading the other thread on "Hinayana" (see: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=2742), I have a question which I hope you would help to answer:

- What is the Chinese translation of the term "Theravada" in the present context (ie. popularly used in our present time)?

a) 原 始 (yuan2 shi3): Original Buddhism
b) 南 宗 (nan2 zong1): Southern School
c) 南 傳 (nan2 chuan2): Southern Transmission
d) 小 乘 (xiao3 cheng2): Small Vehicle
e) any other terms .... ?

[I hope the Chinese characters would appear correctly in this message]

Thanks
BDS
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby BudSas » Wed Nov 25, 2009 8:49 am

BudSas wrote:Hi Ven Pannasikhara and other Chinese reader friends,

While reading the other thread on "Hinayana" (see: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=2742), I have a question which I hope you would help to answer:

- What is the Chinese translation of the term "Theravada" in the present context (ie. popularly used in our present time)?

a) 原 始 (yuan2 shi3): Original Buddhism
b) 南 宗 (nan2 zong1): Southern School
c) 南 傳 (nan2 chuan2): Southern Transmission
d) 小 乘 (xiao3 cheng2): Small Vehicle
e) any other terms .... ?


Perhaps I should add an old term here:

f) 上坐部 (shang4 zuo4 bu4): School of the Elders.

BDS
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:10 am

onlythe last one is a translation of Theravada
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby BudSas » Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:13 am

Manapa wrote:onlythe last one is a translation of Theravada


I agree. Although the term "School of the Elders" for Theravada is literally correct, I believe the term "Southern School" or "Southern Transmission" are more commonly used.

BDS
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby Paññāsikhara » Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:40 am

Depends who you ask. Hopefully somebody who knows what is what!

Probably 南傳 which is the more common term. Especially for the living tradition.

上座部 (not 上坐部) includes all the Sthavira / Thera groups, including Sarvastivada.
It thus tends to have more of an historical sense, viz the 大眾部, for instance.
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby BudSas » Thu Nov 26, 2009 6:54 am

*
Thanks. Much appreciated.

BDS
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby shjohnk » Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:44 am

In the Chinese Dharma talks I've heard, the term '小 乘' is used most often.
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby Paññāsikhara » Thu Nov 26, 2009 9:53 am

shjohnk wrote:In the Chinese Dharma talks I've heard, the term '小 乘' is used most often.


But are they referring to Theravada, or to Hinayana as per general Mahayana usage?
There is definitely a difference, from what I see.
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby BudSas » Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:48 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:
上座部 (not 上坐部) includes all the Sthavira / Thera groups, including Sarvastivada.
It thus tends to have more of an historical sense, viz the 大眾部, for instance.


Thanks for the correction. I'd also like to know the Chinese term for "Thera": 上 座 or 長 老 (zhang3 lao3), or both?

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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby salmon » Wed Dec 16, 2009 8:01 am

Both 小乘 and 南传 are equally common translations of Theravada in Chinese. Some people take offense to the use of "smaller" in 小乘, so will choose to use 南传 instead.

Personally, I use 小乘 in situations when talking informally about the religion and 南传 when talking formally. I don't know why I do it, though...perhaps coz the word 南传 sounds more proper? :shrug:
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Re: Chinese term for Theravada?

Postby Paññāsikhara » Wed Dec 16, 2009 8:23 am

BudSas wrote:
Paññāsikhara wrote:
上座部 (not 上坐部) includes all the Sthavira / Thera groups, including Sarvastivada.
It thus tends to have more of an historical sense, viz the 大眾部, for instance.


Thanks for the correction. I'd also like to know the Chinese term for "Thera": 上 座 or 長 老 (zhang3 lao3), or both?

BDS


If one is just talking about "Thera so-and-so", then the term to use is 長老 in a very Buddhist way, but slightly more colloquial is just something like 老法師 老和尚 or the like. It is, after all, just "Elder". Even to the point of just 老人!! Of course, in Chinese, this is still kind of an honorific.
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