Vehicle

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Vehicle (Skt. yāna; Tib. ཐེག་པ་, tekpa; Wyl. theg pa) — that which carries us along the spiritual path to our final destination.

Alak Zenkar Rinpoche writes:[1]

[...]What is meant by the term ‘vehicle’ or yana[?] It is said in The Condensed Sutra:[2]
This vehicle is the supreme of vehicles for reaching
The vast sky-like palace of happiness and bliss.
Riding in this all beings will reach nirvana.
This refers to the literal meaning of the Sanskrit term yana, a vehicle or means of conveyance, since it is that which carries us along the paths and bhumis, bringing us ever greater enlightened qualities.

Categories of Vehicle

The Buddhist teachings are often classified according to yanas, most commonly into:

The Nyingma tradition also classifies the teachings into nine yanas.

There also exists a five yana classification.

Notes

  1. LotsawaHouse-tag.png A Brief Presentation of the Nine Yanas by Alak Zenkar Rinpoche
  2. i.e., The Condensed Prajnaparamita Sutra