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saṃvṛti-satya


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(Skt.). ‘Relative truth’. In early Buddhism and some forms of Mahāyāna.relative truth was used as an epistemological term to denote the conventional view of the world as constructed by the mind and projected onto ultimate reality (paramārtha-satya). In other forms of Mahāyāna, especially Madhyamaka.it came to be seen in ontological terms as a delusive or deficient dimension of reality. A soteriological problem then arose since this view seemed to suggest that there could be no possible grounds for an unenlightened person to gain access to or achieve enlightenment (bodhi). Various solutions to this problem were suggested, such as the Yogācāra theory of three ontological levels (tri-svabhāva) and the notion of the embryonic Buddha (tathāgata-garbha). See also two truths.

Subjects: Buddhism.


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