Bhikkhu

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Debating bhikkhu in Tibet

A bhikkhu (male) or bhikkhuni (female) is a fully ordained Buddhist monk. (Pāli; Sanskrit: bhikṣu, bhikṣunī.)

Originating in the Pali language, the word literally translates to "one who begs," but it also has several other meanings, one of which is "one who discerns the fears of the round of rebirths." Despite the "he who begs" definition, bhikkus do not beg. They live solely on what others freely give them.

By taking vows a bhikkhu has entered the community of Sangha (Buddhist monastic community) and is expected to obey rules of conduct (typically around 253 for a male) known as the Vinaya, although there are considerable local variations in the interpretations of these rules. A novice monk or nun in the Tibetan tradition takes 36 vows of conduct. Minimum age to take bhikkhu vows is 21 years.


ja:和尚 zh:和尚 de:bhikkhu nl:bhikkhu

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