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Samadhi (best English translation?) - Dhamma Wheel

Samadhi (best English translation?)

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retrofuturist
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Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby retrofuturist » Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:53 am

Greetings,

Samadhi, particularly in the context of Samma Samadhi is often translated as "concentration".

Personally, I find that "clarity" is probably a more suitable translation.

Does anyone have any thoughts on either of those translations, or wish to offer up another?

:meditate:

Metta,
Retro. :)
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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:10 am


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby David2 » Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:12 am

This video could be of interest:


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:21 pm

I have seen it also translated as 'tranquility' and also 'one-pointedness of mind'.
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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby daverupa » Sat Oct 22, 2011 6:24 pm


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby Viscid » Sat Oct 22, 2011 6:36 pm

At what point can someone be considered to have Samma-Samadhi? Our personal translations of the word will likely reflect what we believe the state to be..
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby daverupa » Sat Oct 22, 2011 6:52 pm


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:18 pm


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:28 pm




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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby Viscid » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:43 pm

Last edited by Viscid on Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:51 pm

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:52 pm

Samatha is a synonym of samadhi and its definition is usually put as 'tranquility' or 'serenity'.
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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:15 pm

And here is the entry from Monier-Williams' dictionary:



m. setting to rights , adjustment , settlement MBh [Mahabhatra]. 1159

samādhi in it most basic meaning: putting together, joining, combing with MW 1159

The fact that it had a non-meditative usage points to the likelihood that it is a far older word than the Buddha's time, but like a lot of words current at the time, Buddha used it to his own purposes.

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby cooran » Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:27 pm

Hello Paul,

Huge number of multiple meanings depending on context, as per:

Samādhi
'concentration'
http://dsal.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/philol ... li.1819593

Samādhi
http://what-buddha-said.net/library/Bud ... _s.htm#samādhi
(will need to scroll down - link not forming properly)

with metta
Chris
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Mr Man
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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby Mr Man » Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:55 pm

Idealy I don't think that we should translate the word we should introduce "samadhi" in to English. I think "concentration" is okay.

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby rowyourboat » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:33 pm

Today I went to a session by Ajhan Brahm who suggested 'stilling' as the best translation, and that concentration was a very poor translation.

Also this gives some hints as to what it is about:

"As for the individual who has attained insight into phenomena through heightened discernment, but not internal tranquillity of awareness, he should approach an individual who has attained internal tranquillity of awareness... and ask him, 'How should the mind be steadied? How should it be made to settle down? How should it be unified? How should it be concentrated?' The other will answer in line with what he has seen & experienced: 'The mind should be steadied in this way. The mind should be made to settle down in this way. The mind should be unified in this way. The mind should be concentrated in this way.' Then eventually he [the first] will become one who has attained both internal tranquillity of awareness & insight into phenomena through heightened discernment.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html

Also..

"[9] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in sensitive to the mind.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out sensitive to the mind.' [10] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in satisfying the mind.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out satisfying the mind.' [11] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in steadying the mind.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out steadying the mind.' [12] He trains himself, 'I will breathe in releasing the mind.' He trains himself, 'I will breathe out releasing the mind.'[5]

with metta

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby Paññāsikhara » Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:40 am

It may also be possible to derive the term from not "sam-", but "sama".

~~ Huifeng
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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:51 am


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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby Paññāsikhara » Mon Oct 24, 2011 7:09 am

My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: .

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Re: Samadhi (best English translation?)

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Oct 24, 2011 7:15 am

Welcome back Venerable! :group:

I wonder if this ambiguity in Pali compounds is a disadvantage (because the meaning seems unclear) or an advantage (giving a rich set of multiple meanings). :thinking:

:anjali:
Mike


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