[boo-diz-uh m, boo d-iz-]
  1. a religion, originated in India by Buddha (Gautama) and later spreading to China, Burma, Japan, Tibet, and parts of southeast Asia, holding that life is full of suffering caused by desire and that the way to end this suffering is through enlightenment that enables one to halt the endless sequence of births and deaths to which one is otherwise subject.

Origin of Buddhism

Related formsBud·dhist, noun, adjectiveBud·dhis·tic, Bud·dhis·ti·cal, adjectiveBud·dhis·ti·cal·ly, adverbnon-Bud·dhist, noun, adjectivenon-Bud·dhis·tic, adjectivepre-Bud·dhist, adjectivepro-Bud·dhist, noun, adjectivepseu·do-Bud·dhist, adjective, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for buddhist

Contemporary Examples of buddhist

Historical Examples of buddhist

  • No one will deny that the Buddhist, the Mahometan, the Confucianist, have their grasp of truth.

  • They passed by the tower which looks out to sea, a Buddhist temple in the hills.

  • His picture, with drawn sword, may be found at the entrance of every Buddhist temple.

  • For the Buddhist, doubtless, Gautama is permitted to do the same.

    The Golden Fountain

    Lilian Staveley

  • The Buddhist temples of China have a strong affinity to those of India.


    Thomas Roger Smith

British Dictionary definitions for buddhist


  1. a religious teaching propagated by the Buddha and his followers, which declares that by destroying greed, hatred, and delusion, which are the causes of all suffering, man can attain perfect enlightenmentSee nirvana
Derived FormsBuddhist, noun, adjective
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

Word Origin and History for buddhist



1810, from Buddha + -ist. An earlier word in this sense was a direct borrowing of Sanskrit Bauddha "follower of Buddha" (1801 in English), hence early erroneous hybrid compounds such as Boudhist, Bauddhist.



1801, from Buddha + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

buddhist in Culture


[(booh-diz-uhm, bood-iz-uhm)]

A religion, founded by the Buddha, that emphasizes physical and spiritual discipline as a means of liberation from the physical world. The goal for the Buddhist is to attain nirvana, a state of complete peace in which one is free from the distractions of desire and self-consciousness. Buddhists are found in the greatest numbers in eastern Asia.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.