Definition of sutra in English:


(also sutta)


  • 1A rule or aphorism in Sanskrit literature, or a set of these on grammar or Hindu law or philosophy.

    See also Kama Sutra
    • ‘In the yoga sutra of Patanjali, as long as the soul is attached to sense enjoyment, it is called pratyag-atma.’
    • ‘The book consists of 195 sutras (Sutra is a Sanskrit word meaning precise maxim) and is divided into four sections.’
    • ‘Shankara's commentary on the Vedanta sutra is thought of more highly than the original sutra written by Badarayana.’
    • ‘Vedas, shastras and sutras alike decry the killing and eating of animals’
    • ‘The book, which gives the yoga sutras in Sanskrit followed by a translation and commentary by TKV Desikachar, renowned yoga teacher, was released by actress Amala.’
    • ‘According to tradition, recorded by Kshemaraja, the sutras were found, by the sage Yasugupta inscribed on a rock at the foot of Mahadeva mountain, about 12 miles from Srinagar.’
    • ‘A sutra is a code that expresses the essence of all knowledge in a minimum of words.’
    • ‘The third chapter of the Yoga sutras describe the following minor siddhis.’
    • ‘Al-Biruni wrote a note on Patanjali's Yoga sutra, Bhagavad-Gita and Sankhyakarika.’
    • ‘Mr. Haridas says that there are 12 sutras in the Vedas and the method was first propounded by Swamy Brathi Krishna Theertha.’
    • ‘Clearly illustrated in Patanjali's yoga sutras, which states in the eight limbs that before meditation can begin one must possess concentration (Dharana).’
    • ‘Somananda was the disciple of Vasugupta who as per a different version received the sutras, as these exist today, directly from Lord Shiva in his dream.’
    • ‘Traditionally, Vedic mathematics was taught through sutras.’
    • ‘Yadavacharya explained that according to Shankara the sutra says the two eyes of Pundarika are like two lotuses which are red like the nates of a monkey.’
    • ‘It is a philosophy informed by alchemy, hermetica, kabbalah, mythology, gnosticism, taoism, the yoga sutras, I-ching, and many other world systems.’
    • ‘All Vedantic expositions are commentaries by various Acharyas on the Vedanta sutras.’
    • ‘The system of ethics and disciplines found within Patanjali's yoga sutras includes tapas, which means fire and refers to the passionate commitment to practice.’
    • ‘Shukla says that no existing appendix of the Atharva Veda contains the sixteen sutras, and when asked to produce them, Bharati Krishna was unable to.’
    • ‘The bases of Vedic mathematics are the 16 sutras which attribute a set of qualities to a number or a group of numbers.’
    • ‘Brahman that is the source of everything as mentioned in the Vedanta sutras is not jiva is very clear from Lord Siva's prayer.’
  • 2A Buddhist or Jainist scripture.

    • ‘Both versions of the text were sold in front of the Chion'in, a temple in Kyoto, at a bookstore that specialized in Buddhist sutras and commentaries.’
    • ‘Shakyamuni taught the sutras to ordinary disciples, in the form of a Buddha.’
    • ‘The sutras are the teachings, mostly given by the Buddha, in answer to questions or as direction to the community.’
    • ‘He thought of death, and he thought of his mother, and he started to pray, chanting Buddhist sutras.’
    • ‘Now, as knowledge, the Buddha taught many sutras and many tantras, and they are all words - words of advice given by the Buddha, the enlightened one who reached that level.’
    • ‘They hold a ceremony called ‘pot-reciting’ with Buddhist sutras, singing and dancing, receiving the departed spirits and sending away the solitary ghosts.’
    • ‘Other earlier Buddhist sutras mention that the contemplation on a corpse is effective for curbing sensual desires, but they make no reference to the gender or appearance of the corpse.’
    • ‘A Taoist religious ceremony was held at the crash site as monks chanted Buddhist sutras to summon the spirits of the victims.’
    • ‘As it was frequently mentioned in Buddhist sutras, the practice of contemplating on a decaying corpse was adopted widely by monks regardless of their sectarian affiliations.’
    • ‘The scriptures followed by the trainees are the Mahayana sutras, taught by the Buddha and other Buddhist masters.’
    • ‘Hearing the bell, clappers, gong, announcement of the sutras, thinking about when to end or when to strike the big gong-you may think that all this is exotic Zen.’
    • ‘Each morning in the sutra hall he would respond vigorously to the drum and gong accompanying the recitation of the Heart Sutra.’
    • ‘The correspondence is compelling in light of the fact that the companion Buddhist sutras offer no information about the landscape of this bleak scene.’
    • ‘The monks also study various subjects of Buddhist sutra and tantra of both the Ancient and New traditions.’
    • ‘According to the sutra system, this indivisibility of method and wisdom refers to wisdom affected by method and method affected by wisdom.’
    • ‘As the new sutras multiplied, Buddhist teachers began to compose commentaries and treatises setting forth the philosophical basis of Mahayana beliefs.’
    • ‘It's documented in the ancient Hindu epics, the Buddhist sutras, the Bible, and the Koran.’
    • ‘Among the 440 cable radio stations available to condo owners in one section of Osaka are those broadcasting traditional street vendor cries, buzzing cicadas and Buddhist sutras.’
    • ‘Dislocation also occurred when Buddhist sutras and commentaries were cut up, dispersed, and sometimes reformatted in calligraphy model books (tekagami).’
    • ‘Although the nine stages are treated in many Buddhist sutras, no other pictorial examples illustrating the complete sequence of the decaying corpse have survived in other Asian countries.’


From Sanskrit sūtra ‘thread, rule’, from siv ‘sew’.