From Encyclopedia of Buddhism
Jump to navigation Jump to search

bhāvanāmayīprajñā (P. bhāvanāmayapaññā; T. bsgoms pa las byung ba'i shes rab བསྒོམས་པ་ལས་བྱུང་བའི་ཤེས་རབ་; C. ༷xiuhui 修慧) is translated as the "wisdom of meditation," "wisdom of cultivation," etc. It is the third type of wisdom (prajñā) developed within the threefold training of learning, reflection and meditation; the other two types are the wisdom of listening (śrutamayīprajñā) and the wisdom of contemplation (cintāmayīprajñā).

In this threefold training, after developing wisdom or knowledge through listening and studying (the first type of prajna), one builds on that by reflecting on what was heard or studied. This is followed by the stage of of meditation.

Dzogchen Ponlop states:

In the Buddhist path, we accumulate knowledge in three ways: through study, contemplation, and meditation. First, we gain intellectual knowledge, then we personalize it through reflecting on it, and then we go beyond that to a whole new state of knowing—one that’s free from reliance on reference points. That’s the nature of our journey.[1]

Contemporary writer Andy Karr states:

It is said that studying the dharma without meditating is like trying to scale a rock face with no arms, while practicing meditation without studying is like trying to make a long journey without eyes. Contemplation is the bridge between intellect and insight, study and meditation. To bring all our resources to bear on the journey, we need to join the practices of study, contemplation, and meditation together like three strong locomotives pulling the train of our delusion to the destination of realization.[2]

And also:

Through contemplation we develop certainty in egolessness, but this is still an intellectual understanding. Without meditation, we don't experience egolessness directly. Without direct experience of egolessness, we continue to feel that "I" and "mine" exist, and keep wandering in samsara, fooled by our own projections. As the omniscient Jigme Lingpa said, "Theory is like a patch on a coat - one day it will come apart." That's why we need to meditate within the understanding we have developed through listening and contemplating.[3]

Patrul Rinpoche states:

Through meditation, as you gain practical experience of what you have understood intellectually, the true realization of the natural state develops in you without any mistake. Certainty is born from within. Liberated from confining doubts and hesitations, you see the very face of the natural state.
Having first eliminated all your doubts through hearing and reflection, you come to the practical experience of meditation, and see everything as empty forms without any substantiality, as in the eight similes of illusion.[4]


  1. Dzogchen Ponlop 2010, s.v. "The Three Trainings".
  2. Karr 2007, Preface.
  3. Karr 2007, Chapter One.
  4. Patrul Rinpoche 1998, p. 252.


External links