Definition of Mahayana in English:


Line breaks: Maha|yana
Pronunciation: /ˌmɑː(h)əˈjɑːnə
, ˌməhɑː-/
(also Mahayana Buddhism)


[mass noun]
One of the two major traditions of Buddhism, now practised especially in China, Tibet, Japan, and Korea. The tradition emerged around the 1st century ad and is typically concerned with personal spiritual practice and the ideal of the bodhisattva. Compare with Theravada.
More example sentences
  • In the United States the dominant form of Buddhism is Mahayana Buddhism, and Theravada Buddhism is confined to a few viharas.
  • Buddhism was an influential religion throughout America by the 1970s, with Theravada Buddhism and Mahayana Buddhism greatly influencing immigrants.
  • The kind of Buddhism we follow - Mahayana Buddhism - has the ideal that you're in the middle of all of the defilement, chaos and unrest, but you're still concentrating.


from Sanskrit, from mahā 'great' + yāna 'vehicle'.

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Word of the day retroflex
Pronunciation: ˈrɛtrə(ʊ)flɛks
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