I have gotten interested in an esoteric Buddhist school originating from China and I was wondering what "dari rulai" meant.

I have sort of figured out part of it: "dari" is probably great-day or great-sun. But I cannot figure out "rulai" at all.

  • "Rulai" translates from Sanskrit "Tathāgata," a title of the Bhudda, The Chinese word "如来" literally means "as if arriving" - meaning that the Bhudda is forever, without coming and without leaving. See zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/如来 I suspect your understanding of "大日" is correct.
    – tvk
    Aug 25 '19 at 17:56
  • I think @hinen's answer is really comprehensive and excellent. Butt your question is about a location (literally 'dari rulai temple'). So I suppose the answer to your question should be 'Temple of Mahāvaircana'. Aug 26 '19 at 23:54


Mahāvaircana, the Buddha who is the central teacher and object of veneration in Vajrayāna Buddhism (密宗).

"The Great Sun Buddha, is the transcendent and cosmocratic apotheosis of the historical Buddha, Sakyamuni (釋迦牟尼).
Under the earlier designation Vairocana ("the luminous one"), he represents Buddhism's most profound speculation on the emptiness and interpenetration of all elements in the universe (dharmadhātu, 法界).
As Mahāvairocana he is concretely envisaged as the all-encompassing lord of the cosmos and is the object of worship for a form of Tantric Buddhism (密宗) that spread from India to Sumatra, China, Japan, and Tibet."
(Encyclopedia of Religion, Orzech)

Originally the name referred to the light of the sun, but later on took on connotations of the buddha as fundamental principle of the universe.

He is one of the five buddhas 五佛 depicted in the maṇḍalas of the vajradhātu (金剛界) and garbhadhātu (胎藏界).

The name is transcribed into Chinese as 摩訶毗盧遮那 and 毗盧遮那佛, and is translated variously as 最高顯廣眼藏, 遍照王如來, 光明遍照, 大日遍照, 遍一切處, 遍照尊.

Source: 《 English-Chinese-English Dictionary of Buddhist Terms 》


梵名 Mahāvairocana 。為密教供奉之本尊與最上根本佛。音譯作摩訶毗盧遮那。又作毗盧遮那佛、最高顯廣眼藏、遍照王如來、光明遍照、大日遍照、遍一切處、遍照尊。




Source: 《佛光大辭典》

如來 Tathāgata (तथागत), 多陀阿伽陀.

Tathāgata (怛他揭多) defined as he who comes as do all other Buddhas; or as he who took the 真如 zhenru or absolute way of cause and effect, and attained to perfect wisdom; or as the absolute come; one of the highest titles of a Buddha.

It is the Buddha in his nirmāṇakāya (निर्माणकाय), i. e. his 'transformation' or corporeal manifestation descended on earth. The two kinds of Tathāgata are (1) 在纏 the Tathāgata in bonds, i. e. limited and subject to the delusions and sufferings of life, and (2) 出纏 unlimited and free from them.

There are numerous sutras and śāstras bearing this title of 如來 (rulai).

Source: 《 Soothill-Hodous Dictionary of Chinese Buddhist Terms 》

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