the word dhamma usually refers to the Buddha's teachings, one of Tiratana - Triple Gems: Buddha, Dhamma, Sangha. For general use, the word can means several things, including truth, doctrine and nature.
23 meanings of dhammo (compiled by Jim Anderson):
gu.no, desanaa, pariyatti/paavacana.m, nissatta.m/nissattataa/nijjiivataa, sacca.m, sabhaavo, samaadhi, pa~n~naa, pakati, pu~n~na.m, aapatti, ~neyya.m, pa~n~natti, vikaaro, hetu/paccayo, paccayuppanna.m, yutti, visayo, nibbaana.m, maggo, jaati, mana.m (mano),
- tattha gu.ne desanaaya.m pariyattiya.m nissatte ti evamaadisu dhammasaddo vattati. (Sv I 99, Dhp-a I 22)
- evamaadisuuti ettha aadisaddena saccasabhaavasamaadhipa~n~naa-pakati-pu~n~naapatti~neyyaadisu. (Sv-p.t I 171)
- dhammasaddo panaaya.m pariyattihetugu.nanissattanijjiivataadisu dissati. (Sv-abhin.t I 106, As 38, As-m.t 21, Moh 5, Sadd 560)
- atha vaa dhammasaddo pariyattisaccasamaadhipa~n~naapakatipu~n~na-aapatti~neyyaadisu atthesu di.t.thappayogo. (Ps I 17, It-a 37, Nett-a41, Nett-.t 53, Sadd 561)
- atha vaa dhammasaddo sabhaavapa~n~naapu~n~napa~n~nattiaapatti-pariyattinissattanijjiivataa-vikaaragu.napaccayapaccayuppannaadisu dissati. (Pa.tis-a 18, Sadd 560)
- keci pana dhammasaddassa pavattivisayaana.m dasadhaa va pariccheda.m vadanti:
~neyye magge ca nibbaane sabhaave atha jaatiya.m mane visaya-pu~n~nesu bhaave paavacane pi ca, imesu dasv atthesu dhammasaddo pavattati. (Sadd 562)
Dhammaa is the plural nominative case for dhamma.
Manopubba'ngamaa dhammaa, manose.t.thaa manomayaa;
preceded by mind / mental qualities / headed by mind / shaped by mind
Preceded by the mind are all mental qualities, headed and shaped by the mind.
- manas (m.) mind. [See Warder Lesson 20: Declension of nouns in -as]
- pubba (adj.) before, former.
- -gama (adj.) going.
- pubba'ngama (adj.) preceding; going at the head.
- dhamma (n.) mental quality.
* Refers to greed, aversion, compassion, equanimity, etc.
* Older translations often use mental state.
[ See comments by Dimitry Ivakhnenko:
- manopubba'ngamaa = mano+pubba'ngammaa : preceded by the mind, going before the mind.
- se.t.tha (adj.) foremost, excellent. [Derived from pasattha, praised. (Kaccaayanavyaakara.na)]
- mano-se.t.tha = mind is foremost; headed by the mind.
- maya (adj.) shaped by, made of, consisting of.
- mano-maya = shaped by the mind.
manasaa ce padu.t.thena, bhaasati vaa karoti vaa;
with mind / if / wicked / speaks / or / acts / or
If with a wicked mind, (one) speaks or acts,
- ce (ind. enclitic) if.
- padu.t.tha (adj.) wicked, corrupt.
- bhaasati (v.) speaks.
- vaa (ind.) or.
- karoti (v.) acts.
tato na.m dukkham-anveti, cakka.m-va vahato pada.m.
then / him / suffering-follows / wheel-like / bearer's / foot
then suffering follows him like the wheel (follows) the foot of the bearing
animal (drawing a loaded cart).
- tato (ind.) then, from there.
- na.m (dem. pronoun, acc. sing.) him.
- dukkha (n.) suffering.
- anveti (v.) follows.
- cakka (n.) wheel.
- va (enclitic, from eva.m) like, as if.
- vahant (m.) one who carries, bears.
* often translated literally as an ox pulling a cart.
- pada (m.) foot.
Harvard Oriental Series:
Thought is of all things first,
thought is of all things foremost,
of thought are all things made.
If with thought corrupt a man speak or act,
suffering follows him,
even as a wheel follows the hoof of the beast of burden.
All mental phenomena are preceded by mind,
Mind is their master, they are produced by mind.
If somebody speaks or acts
With a corrupted mind,
Hence suffering follows him,
Like the wheel the foot of the bearing animal.
Ven Acharya Buddharakkhita:
Mind precedes all mental states.
Mind is their chief
they are all mind-wrought.
If with an impure mind
a person speaks or acts,
suffering follows him like the wheel
that follows the foot of the ox.
Phenomena are preceded by the heart,
ruled by the heart,
made of the heart.
If you speak or act
with a corrupted heart,
then suffering follows you --
as the wheel of the cart,
the track of the ox
that pulls it.
Mind foreruns (all evil) conditions, mind is chief, mind-made are they;
if one speaks or acts with wicked mind, because of that,
pain pursues him, even as the wheel follows the hoof of the draught-ox.
Daw Mya Tin (The Dhammapada Stories):
All mental phenomena have mind as their forerunner;
they have mind as their chief; they are mind-made.
If one speaks or acts with an evil mind,
'dukkha' follows him just as the wheel follows the hoofprint of the ox that
draws the cart.
Mind precedes its objects. They are mind-governed and mind-made.
To speak or act with a defiled mind is to draw pain after oneself,
like a wheel behind the feet of the animal drawing it.
All the phenomena of existence have mind as their precursor,
mind as their supreme leader, and of mind are they made.
If with an impure mind one speaks or acts,
suffering follows him in the same way as the
wheel follows the foot of the drawer (of the chariot).
All that we are is the result of what we have thought:
it is founded on our thoughts, it is made up of our thoughts.
If a man speaks or acts with an evil thought, pain follows him,
as the wheel follows the foot of the ox that draws the carriage.
We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
Speak or act with an impure mind
And trouble will follow you
As the wheel follows the ox that draws the cart.
Word List 1:
01. ca | na
| ti | pe
| vaa | kho
| bhikkhave | hoti
| dhammo | so
11. uppajjati | paccayo
| tattha | pa.ticca |
ta.m | dhammaa |
dhamma.m | te |
eva.m | pana
21. tassa | no |
eka.m | bhikkhu |
tii.ni | tesa.m |
me | bhagavaa |
31. aya.m | atha |
tena | ya.m |
hetupaccayaa | nava | atthi | yo | ye |
41. bhikkhuu | aamantaa | citta.m | khandhaa | yassa | ruupa.m | pańca |
viharati | aavuso | vuccati