The Meaning of the Term Zen The designation of this school of the Buddha-Way as Zen, which means sitting meditation, is derived from a transliteration of the Chinese word Chán. Because the Chinese term is in turn a transliteration of the Sanskrit term dhyāna, however, Zen owes its historical origin to early Indian Buddhism, where a deepened state of meditation, called samādhi, was singled out as one of the three components of study a Buddhist was required to master, the other two being an observation of ethical precepts (sīla) and an embodiment of nondiscriminatory wisdom (prajñā).
The reason that meditation was singled out for the designation of this school is based on the fact that the historical Buddha achieved enlightenment (nirvāna) through the practice of meditation. 2. Tibetan Buddhism Archives. The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying. In his foreword to the book, the 14th Dalai Lama says: In this timely book, Sogyal Rinpoche focuses on how to understand the true meaning of life, how to accept death, and how to help the dying, and the dead...Death and dying provide a meeting point between the Tibetan Buddhist and modern scientific traditions.