A note on language and pronunciationMost of the foreign words in this work are from Pali and Sanskrit, which
are closely related languages of ancient India. Pali is the scriptural, liturgical and scholarly language of Southern Buddhism, one of the three
main cultural traditions of Buddhism. Sanskrit, or rather 'Buddhist
Hybrid Sanskrit', is the language in which many of the scriptures and
scholarly treatises of Mahāyāna Buddhism came to be written in India.
Northern and Eastern Buddhism, where the Mahāyānaformof
Buddhism predominates, generally use the Tibetan or Chinese translations of these texts. Many works on Buddhism give only Sanskrit versions of words, but this is artificial as Sanskrit is no longer used by
Buddhists (except in Nepal), but Pali is still much in use.This work therefore uses Pali versions of terms for most of early
Buddhism, for Southern/Theravāda Buddhism, and when discussing
Buddhism in general. Sanskrit versions are used when particularly discussing Mahāyāna forms of Buddhism, for some early schools which
also came to use Sanskrit, and when discussing Hinduism. Sanskrit is
also used for certain key terms that have come to be known in English: Nirvān$$a (Pali Nibbāna), karma (Pali kamma), Bodhisattva (Pali Bodhisatta) and Stūpa (Pali Thūpa). In many cases, Pali and Sanskrit terms are spelt the
same. Where they are spelt differently, the Pali spelling is the simpler.Both Pali and Sanskrit have more than twenty-six letters, which
means that when they are written in the roman alphabet, the extra letters
need to be represented by the use of diacritical marks. Once the specific
sounds of the letters are known, Pali and Sanskrit words are then pronounced as they are written, unlike English ones. It is therefore worth
taking account of the diacritical marks, as they give a clear guide to pronunciation. The letters are pronounced as follows:
|a is short and flat, like the u in 'hut' or 'utter'|
|i is short, like i in 'bit'|
|u is like u in 'put', or oo in 'foot'|
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: An Introduction to Buddhist Ethics: Foundations, Values, and Issues.
Contributors: Peter Harvey - Author.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press.
Place of publication: Cambridge, England.
Publication year: 2000.
Page number: xix.
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