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Prāpti (T. thob pa ཐོབ་པ་; C. de 得) is defined in the Sanskrit Abhidharma tradition as a non-concurrent formation that enables "the possession of that which is obtained within one's mindstream."[1]

The Khenjuk states:

If a quality or attribute in one's being, whether virtuous, unvirtuous or neutral, is obtained anew without being there formerly, this possession being [now] continuously present is called acquisition [prāpti].[2]

Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics states:

Obtainment [prāpti] is explained as a substance enabling the possession of that which is obtained within one’s mindstream. This too is considered to be something separate from the thing obtained, just as, for example, the rope securing a load exists separately from the load.[1]

This formation is identified as:

In the abhidharma tradition of the Vaibhāṣika school, non-concurrent formations are understood as substantially existent entities. In the Sautrantika Abhidharma and in the Higher Abhidharma traditions, these formations are understood as imputations that arise from the mind.

Translations of this term into English

  • obtainment (T. thob pa) (Ian James Coghlan)
  • acquisition (T. thop pa) (Erik Pema Kunsang, Rigpa wiki)
  • possession, aquisition (T. 'thob pa) (Buswell, Princeton Encyclopedia of Buddhism)
  • obtaining (ADS translation)


  1. 1.0 1.1 Thupten Jinpa 2017, s.v. Obtainment.
  2. Mipham Rinpoche 2004, s.v. Aquisition.


External links