Nirvana in Buddhism is a compound concept which describes the state in which an individual becomes free from the sufferings in the world and realizes his connection with the universe. Nirvana is the ultimate goal in Buddhism. When the thirst of all desires is completed an individual gets transformed into some other state which is the highest state one can achieve in life. It is also known as “Nibbana” in Pali.
Meaning of nirvana in Buddhism?
Nirvana Means “Blown Out”
but this stage cannot be easily related to an individual’s spiritual life.
Nirvana is not a place but a stage of life. Nirvana cannot be explained completely it can only be experienced. Buddha also while giving his teachings explained Nirvana but never asked to follow the method blindly.It is above time and space, it cannot be achieved easily. Nirvana is not limited to only male but also female. It can be experienced by any individual who wishes to experience it.
There are two types of Nirvana namely:
- Nirvana with Remainder
- Nirvana without Remainder
The two types of Nirvana can be explained with the incidences that occurred when Buddha was meditating under the Bodhi Tree located at Bodhgaya to gain enlightenment. According to Buddhist culture it is believed that Mara had sent his daughters for tempting Buddha but were not able to do so. After this failure Mara had sent groups of demons with weapons to attack Buddha but were not able to do anything to harm Buddha. Buddha faced all the attempts made by Mara to stop him from getting enlightenment and overcame all the reaming feelings like hatred, anger, desires. Finally, Buddha achieved enlightenment that is “Nirvana with Remainder”. Here Buddha obtained Nirvana along with Remainder because his physical body was still present. When Buddha passed away in Kushinagar, the type of Nirvana he gained was “Nirvana without Remainder” because his physical body also went away with him leaving behind all attachments that he had.
Traditional viewing in Buddhism states that there are various states obtained in nirvana. Attaining Nirvana is not easy only few can attain it. Many Buddhist followers do not believe in attaining nirvana state instead they aim at helping people and making world a better place.
The Mahayana Buddhism believes in being dedicated to enlightenment of everyone by choosing existence in world rather than obtaining Nirvana without Remainder. In many schools which follow the Mahayana Buddhism do not even consider Nirvana. Nirvana and Samsara are believed to be same rather than being opposite. Nirvana can be considered as the “truth nature” of Samsara.
But before achieving Nirvana one needs to cultivate the good qualities and overcome the bad qualities. Because a positive mindset brings out a positive behavior in an individual and thus brings well-being’s in the world.