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The Voice of the Silence – Glossary – F

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The Voice of the Silence

<The Voice of the Silence



Five Hindrances (or ties) – B. [I 43]

Sk.: Samyojana. Of the causes of reincarnation chaining man, Buddhism reports five “lower” bonds: 1) the illusory belief in the personality (Pāli: Sakkāya-ditthi), 2) skepticism, 3) attachment to vain rituals and rules, 4) the craving for sensation, 5) malevolence. He who totally frees himself of these ties is an anāgāmin. Another type of hindrance (the five “higher” ties) causes bondage to the still subtle worlds: to free oneself from these means to become an Arhat.

Five Impediments – B. [I 43]

Sk.: Nīvaraṇa. The inner hindrances of concentration and discernment. Traditionally those are: sensual desires, malevolence, stupor and languor, agitation and restlessness, and sceptical doubts. Their complete control is attained only by the Arhat.

Five Virtues (of the Bodhisattva) – B. [Fragment 3]

In The Voice of the Silence the five virtues probably refer to the first five Pāramitās leading to Enlightenment (Bodhi) and to the highest Wisdom (Prajñā). Cf. Amitābha Sūtra, cited by Edkins, C.B., p. 233.

Flame – Th. [I 40, Fragment 2, III]]

According to H.P.B. the flame always refers to the one Source, the inexhaustible origin of all life, from which are kindled the “Fires,” cosmic hierarchies of entities and powers manifesting themselves and working in the emanation (and reabsorption) of the worlds and beings (cf. S.D. I, 215, 259 fn:†). Similarly the divine prototype of man (see: Planetary Spirit, Dhyāni-Buddha) is for each individual the Flame, of which the human monad is like a “spark” or the “vehicle” (S.D. I, 265); the total reunification with this original Flame (the “Heavenly Father”) of the spiritually perfected Ego takes place in Paranirvāṇā.

Fohat – Th. [I 31]

The essence of cosmic electricity as a universal vital energy in its two forms, constructive and destructive. (T.G .). Cosmic life or vitality; in theosophy, bipolar cosmic vital electricity, equivalent to the light of the Logos, daiviprakriti, erōs, the fiery whirlwind, etc. As the bridge between spirit and matter, Fohat is the collectivity of intelligent forces through which cosmic ideation impresses itself upon substance, thus forming the various worlds of manifestation. In the manifested universe, it is“that Occult, electric, vital power, which, under the Will of the Creative Logos, unites and brings together all forms, giving them the first impulse which becomes in time law. . . . Fohat becomes the propelling force, the active Power which causes the One to become Two and Three . . . then Fohat is transformed into that force which brings together the elemental atoms and makes them aggregate and combine” (S.D. I,109, E.T.G.].

Four Modes of Truth – B. [I 43]

An expression used by Edkins (C.B., p. 23) to indicate the classical Four Noble Truths of Buddhism, and which the author enumerates with the corresponding Chinese names.

(Ibid. p. 23 fn).

Four Noble Truths – B. [I 43]

Sk.: Chatur Āryasatyāṇi – Ch.: szu ti [si ti]. These truths form the basis of all Buddhism. They are: 1) the universal presence of suffering (Sk.: Duḥkha – Ch.: k’u); 2) the accumulation of suffering (Sk.: samudaya – Ch.: chi) having its origin in the thirst for desire (Sk.: Tṛṣṇā – Pāli: Taṇhā); 3) the extinction of suffering (Sk.: Nirodha – Ch.: Mieh) which can be reached through the extinguishing of the cause; 4) the path (Sk.: Mārga – Ch.: Tao traced by the Buddha, who gives the means to reach this liberation.

Fourfold Dhyāna– B. [III 4]

This refers to the four “mental absorptions” (Pāli: jhāna) described in the Buddhist Canon. This progression can be described very approximately as follows: 1) the mind, freed from the stimulations of the senses and the terrestrial concerns, is concentrated attentively on one subject to reflect upon; 2) by stopping the reasoning mind a state of rest is established in which the mind concentrates on one single point: joy and a feeling of well-being are then experienced; 3) equanimity takes the place of the joy, awareness is awake and the well-being persists; 4) only the inner awakening, the mental purity, and an unperturbable equanimity dominate. This inner discipline assumes that the individual at the same time strives to get rid of the five hindrances, of the five impediments, etc. In itself it is only a means and not the goal. It is true that it favors the awakening of the paranormal powers (see: Abhijnā, Siddhi). But this is not enough to reach the state of Arhat. Besides, there are other classifications and subdivisions of the Four Dhyānas. See also Samtan

Fourfold Path – B.

Sk.: Āryamārga; Pāli: Ariya magga (= Noble Path). It comprises four stages (each of which is double, whether the individual effectively finds entrance to it, or completely realizes its fruition. They are: 1) “the entering in the stream” (Sk.: Srotāpatti) leading to Nirvāṇa , while the term Srotāpanna refers to the one who enters it; 2) the stage of the Sakṛdāgāmini.e. “one who shall return only once” to birth; 3) the stage of Anāgāminone who will return no more” in this world; 4) the state of Arhat leading to Nirvāṇa.