Korean MC: samsin
Korean MR: samsin
three bodies [of the Buddha]
- (Skt. trikāya; Tib. sku gsum). The three bodies are: dharmakāya, saṃbhogakāya, nirmāṇakāya.
- The dharma-kāya (法身; Tib. chos sku) is a reference to the transcendence of form and realization of true thusness.
- The saṃbhoga-kāya (報身, 受用身; Tib. longs sku) is the buddha-body that is called "reward body" or "body of enjoyment of the merits attained as a bodhisattva."
- The nirmāṇakāya (化身, 應身; Tib. sprul sku) is the body manifested in response to the need to teach sentient beings.
In the Faxiang 法相 system the three bodies are explained in this way:
- The Buddha body in its self-nature, which is the same as the dharma body.
- The body that he receives for enjoyment 受用身. Within this is the body received for one's own enjoyment is the transformation into the mirrorlike cognitive faculty 大圓鏡智, and the body received for the enjoyment of others in the transformation into the faculty that perceives intrinsic equality 平等性智. The first is experienced only in the Buddha realm, while the second is experienced from the first ground 第一地 of bodhisattva 菩薩 practice and above.
- The transformation body, by which he can appear in any form. This body is manifested according to the arousal of the wisdom which brings the salvation of sentient beings to fulfillment.
From this, Buddha-body theory was expanded from three, to four, and even up to ten Buddha-bodies. Among these, the Mahāyāna theory of the three bodies—the dharma-body, the reward-body, and the response-body is most common. The dharma body 法身 is considered to be the eternal indestructible true principle, the Buddha's original body. The response body 應身 is considered to be the Buddha's manifest body, but in Mahāyāna Buddhism is regarded as the personification body, which from true principle manifests according to the temperaments and abilities of sentient beings in order to save them.
The reward body 報身 is manifested as a combination of the other two, and is therefore not simply eternal true principle, nor simply an impermanent personality. Rather, it is an ideal body possessed by those who have awakened to the true principle based on meritorious practice. It is the living form of the eternal principle, possessing individuality. This is a general explanation, and there have been a large number of interpretations of buddha-body theory offered in the history of Buddhism, among which there are significant differences. [resp. Charles Muller, Achim Bayer; source(s): Nakamura,YBh-Ind, JEBD, Hirakawa, Yokoi]
- While the doctrine of the trikāya is a Mahāyāna concept, it partly results from the Hīnayāna idealization of the earthly Buddha with his thirty-two signs, eighty physical marks, clairvoyance, clairaudience, holiness, purity, wisdom, pity, etc. Mahāyāna, however, proceeded to conceive of Buddha as the Universal, the All, with infinity of forms, yet above all our concepts of unity or diversity. To every Buddha Mahāyāna attributed a three-fold body: that of essential Buddha; that of joy or enjoyment of the fruits of his past saving labors; that of power to transform himself at will to any shape for omnipresent salvation of those who need him. The trinity finds different methods of expression, e.g. Vairocana is entitled 法身, the embodiment of the Dharma, shining everywhere, enlightening all; Locana is 報身; c.f. 三賓, the embodiment of purity and bliss; Śākyamuni is 化身 or Buddha revealed. In the esoteric school they are 法 Vairocana, 報 Amitâbha, and 化 Śākyamuni. The 三賓 are also 法 dharma, 報 saṃgha, 化 buddha. Nevertheless, the three are considered as a trinity, the three being essentially one, each in the other. (1) 法身 Dharmakāya in its earliest conception was that of the body of the dharma, or truth, as preached by Śākyamuni; later it became his mind or soul in contrast with his material body. In Madhyamaka 中道, the dharmakāya was the only reality, i.e. emptiness, or the immaterial, the ground of all phenomena; in other words, the 眞如 the tathāgatagarbha, thusness. According to the Huayan school 華嚴宗 it is the 理 or noumenon, while the other two are 氣 or phenomenal aspects. "For the Vijñānavāda... the body of the law as highest reality is emptiness intelligence, whose infection (saṃkleṣa) results in the process of birth and death, whilst its purification brings about Nirvāṇa, or its restoration to its primitive transparence (Keith). The "body of the law is the true reality of everything." Nevertheless, in Mahāyāna every Buddha has his own 法身; e.g. in the dharmakāya aspect we have the designation Amitâbha, who in his saṃbhogakāya aspect is styled Amitâyus. (2) 報身 Saṃbhogakāya, a Buddha's reward body, or body of enjoyment of the merits he attained as a bodhisattva; in other words, a Buddha in glory in his heaven. This is the form of Buddha as an object of worship. It is defined in two aspects, (a) 自受用身 for his own bliss, and (b) 他受用身 for the sake of others, revealing himself in his glory to bodhisattvas, enlightening and inspiring them. By wisdom a Buddha's dharmakāya is attained, by bodhisattva-merits his saṃbhogakāya. Not only has every Buddha all the three bodies or aspects, but as all men are of the same essence, or nature, as buddhas, they are therefore potential buddhas and are in and of the trikāya. Moreover, trikāya is not divided, for a Buddha in his 化身 is still one with his 法身 and 報身, all three bodies being co-existent. (3) 化身; 應身; 應化身 nirmāṇakāya, a Buddha's transformation, or miraculous body, in which he appears at will and in any form outside his heaven, e.g. as Śākyamuni among men."[resp. Charles Muller; source(s): Soothill]
- des trois corps de buddha [resp. Paul Swanson]
Bukkyō jiten (Ui), 365
Bulgyo sajeon, 410a
Zengaku daijiten (Komazawa U.), 400d
Iwanami bukkyō jiten, 321
A Glossary of Zen Terms (Inagaki), 308
Japanese-English Buddhist Dictionary (Daitō shuppansha), 258b/285
Japanese-English Zen Buddhist Dictionary (Yokoi), 588
Zen Dust (Sasaki), 312
Zengo jiten (Iriya and Koga), 6-P80, 8-P53, 11-P165
Bukkyōgo daijiten (Nakamura), 477c, 478a →, 477a
Fo Guang Dictionary, 555
Buddhist Chinese-Sanskrit Dictionary (Hirakawa), 0022
Bukkyō daijiten (Oda), 1557-3, 628-2
(Soothill's) Dictionary of Chinese Buddhist Terms, 77
Copyright © 2010 -- Charles Muller