84000 Glossary of Terms

Our trilingual glossary combining entries from all of our publications into one useful resource, giving translations and definitions of thousands of terms, people, places, and texts from the Buddhist canon.

མཁན་པོ། | Glossary of Terms

  • མཁན་པོ།

  • ཧྭ་ཤང་།
  • mkhan po
  • hwa shang
  • upādhyāya
  • Term
Publications: 25

A person’s particular preceptor within the monastic tradition. They must have at least ten years of standing in the saṅgha, and their role is to confer ordination, to tend to the student, and to provide all the necessary requisites, therefore guiding that person for the taking of full vows and the maintenance of conduct and practice. This office was decreed by the Buddha so that aspirants would not have to receive ordination from the Buddha in person, and the Buddha identified two types: those who grant entry into the renunciate order and those who grant full ordination. The Tibetan translation mkhan po has also come to mean “a learned scholar,” the equivalent of a paṇḍita, but that is not the intended meaning in Indic Buddhist literature.