[ boh-duh-suht-vuh ]
/ ˌboʊ dəˈsʌt və /

noun Buddhism.

a person who has attained prajna, or Enlightenment, but who postpones Nirvana in order to help others to attain Enlightenment: individual Bodhisattvas are the subjects of devotion in certain sects and are often represented in painting and sculpture.
Compare Arhat.

Origin of Bodhisattva

1820–30; < Pali, Sanskrit Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for bodhisattva

British Dictionary definitions for bodhisattva

/ (ˌbəʊdɪˈsætvə, -wə, ˌbɒd-, ˌbəʊdiːˈsʌtvə) /


(in Mahayana Buddhism) a divine being worthy of nirvana who remains on the human plane to help men to salvationCompare arhat

Word Origin for Bodhisattva

Sanskrit, literally: one whose essence is enlightenment, from bodhi enlightenment + sattva essence
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012