Sunday, November 27, 2005

Simple Words - SEMS


Sanskrit and Tibetan has many words for mind, sems is one, yid is another one. It's interesting how our culture has very few words describing mind or the mental functions.

sems, mind, in sanskrit is citta, and it's present in words such as Cittamatra, mind-only school. Note that you need to think of the context when translating this word, it could mean the cognitive act itself, thoughts, consciousness, and so forth.

As an interesting other word, sems can means sentient being. can is used to describe something that has a quality, so sems can is someone with a mind, that's the definition of a sentient being. This includes animals as well, as they have a mind.

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