Bodhisattva

Definition - What does Bodhisattva mean?

Bodhisattva refers to any individual who has attained bodhicitta, or the will to live a life centered on serving others and assisting them in reaching enlightenment. The term is derived from the Sanskrit, bodhi, which means “enlightenment” or "awakening,” and sattva, which means “essence” or “goodness."

Yoga can be a means of reaching this honored status as an individual.

Yogapedia explains Bodhisattva

In early Buddhist practices, the term, bodhisattva, specifically referred to the former lives of the Buddha. Today, the term is most often used in Mahayana Buddhist yoga to refer to anyone who is devoted to achieving enlightenment through the vehicles of empathy and compassion, for the benefit of others. In Mahayana Buddhism, being a bodhisattva is the goal of a practitioner’s spiritual journey.

Within a spiritual or Buddhist yoga practice, it is understood that mudras (yogic gestures) represent the qualities of a bodhisattva and can help express or ignite those qualities when included in meditation or asanas.

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