NIRVÁNA, s. Skt. nirvana. The literal meaning of this word is simply ‘blown out,’ like a candle. It is the technical term in the philosophy of the Buddhists for the condition to which they aspire as the crown and goal of virtue, viz. the cessation of sentient existence. On the exact meaning of the term see Childer’s Pali Dictionary, s.v. nibbana, an article from which we quote a few sentences below, but which covers ten double-column pages. The word has become common in Europe along with the growing interest in Buddhism, and partly from its use by Schopenhauer. But it is often employed very inaccurately, of which an instance occurs in the quotation below from Dr. Draper. The oldest European occurrence of which we are aware is in Purchas, who had met with it in the Pali form common in Burma, &c., nibban.

1626.—“After death they (the Talapoys) beleeve three Places, one of Pleasure Scuum (perhaps sukham) like the Mahumitane Paradise ; another of Torment Naxac (read Nurac) ; the third of Annihilation which they call Niba.”—Purchas, Pilgrimage, 506.

c. 1815.—“…the state of Niban, which is the most perfect of all states. This consists in an almost perpetual extacy, in which those who attain it are not only free from troubles and miseries of life, from death, illness and old age, but are abstracted from all sensation ; they have no longer either a thought or a desire.”—Sangermano, Burmese Empire, p. 6.

1858.—“…Transience, Pain, and Unreality…these are the characters of all existence, and the only true good is exemption from these in the attainment of nirwana, whether that be, as in the view of the Brahmin or the theistic Buddhist, absorption into the supreme essence ; or whether it be, as many have thought, absolute nothingness ; or whether it be, as Mr. Hodgson quaintly phrases it, the ubi or the modus in which the infinitely attenuated elements of all things exist, in this last and highest state of abstraction from all particular modifications such as our senses and understandings are cognisant of.”—Yule, Mission to Ava, 236.

„ “When from between the sál trees at Kusinára he passed into nirwána, he (Buddha) ceased, as the extinguished fire ceases.”—Ibid. 239.

1869.—“What Bishop Bigandet and others represent as the popular view of the Nirvâna, in contradistinction to that of the Buddhist divines, was, in my opinion, the conception of Buddha and his disciples. It represented the entrance of the soul into rest, a subduing of all wishes and desires, indifference to joy and pain, to good and evil, an absorption of the soul into itself, and a freedom from the circle of existences from birth to death, and from death to a new birth. This is still the meaning which educated people attach to it, whilst Nirvâna suggests rather a kind of Mohammedan Paradise or of blissful Elysian fields to the minds of the larger masses.”—Prof. Max Müller, Lecture on Buddhistic Nihilism, in Trübner’s Or. Record, Oct. 16.

1875.—“Nibbanam. Extinction ; destruction ; annihilation ; annihilation of being, Nirvana ; annihilation of human passion, Arhatship or final sanctification.…In Trübner’s Record for July, 1870, I first propounded a theory which meets all the difficulties of the question, namely, that the word Nirvana is used to designate two different things, the state of blissful sanctification called Arhatship, and the annihilation of existence in which Arhatship ends.”—Childers. Pali Dictionary, pp. 265–266.

„ “But at length reunion with the universal intellect takes place ; Nirwana is reached, oblivion is attained…the state in which we were before we were born.”—Draper, Conflict, &c., 122.


“And how—in fulness of the times—it fell
That Buddha died…
And how a thousand thousand crores since then
Have trod the Path which leads whither he went
Unto Nirvâna where the Silence lives.”

Sir E. Arnold, Light of Asia, 237.

NIZAM, THE, n.p. The hereditary style of the reigning prince of the Hyderabad Territories ; ‘His Highness the Nizám,’ in English official phraseology. This in its full form, Nizam-ul-Mulk, w a s the title of Asaf Jah, the founder of the dynasty, a very able soldier and minister of the Court of Aurangzib, who became Subadar (see SOUBADAR) of the Deccan in 1713. The title is therefore the same that had pertained to the founder of the Ahmednagar dynasty more than two centuries earlier, which the Portuguese called that of Nizamaluco. And the circumstances originating the Hyderabad dynasty were parallel. At the death of Asaf Jah (in 1748) he was independent sovereign of a large territory in the Deccan, with his residence at Hyderabad, and with dominions in a general way corresponding to those still held by his descendant.

NIZAMALUCO, n.p. Izam Maluco is the form often found in Correa. One of the names which constantly occur in the early Portuguese writers on India. It represents Nizam-ul-Mulk (see NIZAM). This was the title of one of the chiefs at the c

  By PanEris using Melati.

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