Dictionary.com

nirvana

[ nir-vah-nuh, -van-uh, ner- ]
/ nɪrˈvɑ nə, -ˈvæn ə, nər- /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: nirvana / nirvanic on Thesaurus.com

noun
(often initial capital letter)Pali nibbana. Buddhism. freedom from the endless cycle of personal reincarnations, with their consequent suffering, as a result of the extinction of individual passion, hatred, and delusion: attained by the Arhat as his goal but postponed by the Bodhisattva.
(often initial capital letter)Hinduism. salvation through the union of Atman with Brahma; moksha.
a place or state characterized by freedom from or oblivion to pain, worry, and the external world.

COMPARE MEANINGS

Click for a side-by-side comparison of meanings. Use the word comparison feature to learn the differences between similar and commonly confused words.
QUIZ
WILL YOU SAIL OR STUMBLE ON THESE GRAMMAR QUESTIONS?
Smoothly step over to these common grammar mistakes that trip many people up. Good luck!
Question 1 of 7
Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Origin of nirvana

First recorded in 1830–40, nirvana is from the Sanskrit word nirvāṇa

OTHER WORDS FROM nirvana

nir·va·nic, adjective

Words nearby nirvana

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use nirvana in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for nirvana

nirvana
/ (nɪəˈvɑːnə, nɜː-) /

noun
Buddhism Hinduism final release from the cycle of reincarnation attained by extinction of all desires and individual existence, culminating (in Buddhism) in absolute blessedness, or (in Hinduism) in absorption into Brahman

Derived forms of nirvana

nirvanic, adjective

Word Origin for nirvana

C19: from Sanskrit: extinction, literally: a blowing out, from nir- out + vāti it blows
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

Cultural definitions for nirvana

nirvana
[ (neer-vah-nuh, nur-vah-nuh) ]

In Buddhism, the highest state of consciousness, in which the soul is freed from all desires and attachments. Nirvana is sometimes inaccurately used as a synonym for heaven or paradise.

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.
FEEDBACK