What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

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arkaprava
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What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by arkaprava »

What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro? I probably once heard Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu himself saying born on a wednesday or something like that, which I cannot recall at the moment. Thanks in advance
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Sam Vara
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by Sam Vara »

arkaprava wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 5:54 pm What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro? I probably once heard Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu himself saying born on a wednesday or something like that, which I cannot recall at the moment. Thanks in advance
I think monks in certain lineages are named according to which day their ordination or birth is on, but I don't think the name itself actually means that. My Pali is distinctly shaky, but "issara" means lord, master, or one with authority; and the "Thān" bit means, I think, basis, foundation, etc. So it might mean something like "Foundation for mastery/lordship".

Someone far better than me will hopefully be along to correct me!
perkele
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by perkele »

Sam Vara wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 6:08 pm
arkaprava wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 5:54 pm What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro? I probably once heard Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu himself saying born on a wednesday or something like that, which I cannot recall at the moment. Thanks in advance
I think monks in certain lineages are named according to which day their ordination or birth is on, but I don't think the name itself actually means that. My Pali is distinctly shaky, but "issara" means lord, master, or one with authority; and the "Thān" bit means, I think, basis, foundation, etc. So it might mean something like "Foundation for mastery/lordship".

Someone far better than me will hopefully be along to correct me!
Interesting.
I don't know any Pali, but am, of course, far better than you, or anyone else (except maybe Ana Kasparian). :jumping:
I think, with the vocuabulary you provided, it would make more sense combined "the other way around", i.e. Thanissaro might mean something like "master of the basics" (which actually seems like a very fitting name, considering his extensive informative and instructive writings on the groundwork of Dhamma practice). And of course mastering the basics is then also the "foundation for mastery" of everything else, so I guess it makes sense both ways then after all.

Just speculating intuition, without knowing Pali grammar.
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Sam Vara
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by Sam Vara »

perkele wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 6:48 pm
Sam Vara wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 6:08 pm
arkaprava wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 5:54 pm What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro? I probably once heard Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu himself saying born on a wednesday or something like that, which I cannot recall at the moment. Thanks in advance
I think monks in certain lineages are named according to which day their ordination or birth is on, but I don't think the name itself actually means that. My Pali is distinctly shaky, but "issara" means lord, master, or one with authority; and the "Thān" bit means, I think, basis, foundation, etc. So it might mean something like "Foundation for mastery/lordship".

Someone far better than me will hopefully be along to correct me!
Interesting.
I don't know any Pali, but am, of course, far better than you, or anyone else (except maybe Ana Kasparian). :jumping:
I think, with the vocuabulary you provided, it would make more sense combined "the other way around", i.e. Thanissaro might mean something like "master of the basics" (which actually seems like a very fitting name, considering his extensive informative and instructive writings on the groundwork of Dhamma practice). And of course mastering the basics is then also the "foundation for mastery" of everything else, so I guess it makes sense both ways then after all.

Just speculating intuition, without knowing Pali grammar.
Sounds better to me! :thumbsup:

(Now wait for one of the experts to turn up and put us right... :toilet: )
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Dhammanando
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by Dhammanando »

arkaprava wrote: Wed Oct 07, 2020 5:54 pm What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro? I probably once heard Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu himself saying born on a wednesday or something like that, which I cannot recall at the moment.
Anybody born on a Wednesday in the daytime who ordains as a bhikkhu in Thailand, Laos or Cambodia will be given a Pali name beginning with a retroflex consonant. If he's born on a Wednesday night then he'll get a name beginning with one of the first four vagga consonants. If he's born on a Sunday it will begin with a vowel, etc., etc. In short, each day of the week has a set of letters associated with it and so if you know a Thai-ordained bhikkhu's name you can always tell which day of the week he was born on:

Sunday: a, ā, i, u, o
Monday: k, kh, g, gh
Tuesday: c, ch, j, jh, ñ
Wednesday daytime: ṭh
Wednesday nighttime: y, r, l, v
Thursday: p, ph, b, bh, m
Friday: s, h
Saturday: t, th, d, dh, n

As for the meaning of "Ṭhānissaro", this is a bit uncertain. The word doesn't occur even as a common noun, let alone a person's name, in any canonical or commentarial Pali texts. In Sanskrit it occurs as Sthāneśvara, a genitive tappurisa compound which can mean either a regional governor (lit. "Lord of the Place") or a place name ("God's Place") - a region of the Punjab that was once a stronghold of the largest Pudgalavādin school.

In Pali, however, its meaning is uncertain because (1) the Thai publishers of dictionaries of monastic names differ in how they analyse and translate the compound and (2) none of them translate the ṭhāna part - they just import it; unfortunately ฐานะ / ṭhāna has much the same range of meanings in Thai as it does in Pali, so one can't know for sure which is the intended one.

A couple of examples:

One online dictionary treats it as an instrumental dependent-determinative (tatiyā-tappurisa) compound:

ผู้เป็นใหญ่ด้วยฐานะ
"Chief/lord by way of ṭhāna".

And another as a locative dependent-determinative (sattamī-tappurisa):

ผู้เป็นใหญ่ในฐานะ
"Chief/lord in/in ṭhāna (or with regard to ṭhāna)".

And yet another as:

ผู้มีฐานะอันยิ่งใหญ่
"One who has a truly great ṭhāna."
Svākkhātaṃ brahmacariyaṃ, sandiṭṭhikam’akālikaṃ,
Yattha amoghā pabbajjā, appamattassa sikkhato.


“The holy life is well proclaimed,
directly visible, immediate,
Where not in vain is the going forth
of one who trains heedfully.”
— Sela Sutta
arkaprava
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by arkaprava »

Thank you Bhante
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Sabbe_Dhamma_Anatta
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Re: What is the meaning of Ṭhānissaro ?

Post by Sabbe_Dhamma_Anatta »

  • Day Letters
    Monday (တနင်္လာ) က (ka), ခ (hka), ဂ (ga), ဃ (ga), င (nga)
    Tuesday (အင်္ဂါ) စ (sa), ဆ (sa), ဇ (za), ဈ (za), ည (nya)
    Wednesday morning (ဗုဒ္ဓဟူး) လ (la), ဝ (wa)
    Wednesday afternoon (ရာဟု) ယ (ya), ရ (ya, ra)
    Thursday (ကြာသာပတေး) ပ (pa), ဖ (hpa), ဗ (ba), ဘ (ba), မ (ma)
    Friday (သောကြာ) သ (tha), ဟ (ha)
    Saturday (စနေ) တ (ta), ထ (hta), ဒ (da), ဓ (da), န (na)
    Sunday (တနင်္ဂနွေ) အ (a)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burmese_names

Similar here in Myanmar, the naming system is not limited to monks and, consequently, not limited to pali names.

However, the names, imo, are based on how it is pronounced in Burmese.

For example:
Pali 'sa' is transliterated in Burmese as 'tha'
Mahasi Sayadaw (Sobana): pronounced as Thawbana (or) ? Thobana ? in Burmese.
So, it can be implied that he was born on a friday (29 Jul 1904) ... first consonant is 'tha'.

:heart:
.


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  • "an entirely and perfectly foolish idea" :D ~ MN22
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