Answers to more questions are in the Frequently Asked Questions page.

About the NTI Reader

The Nan Tien Institute (NTI) Buddhist Text Reader (NTI Reader) is a free, open source project for use in reading and analyzing Chinese Buddhist texts. For more a more detailed description of the NTI Reader, see the page Description of the NTI Reader. To find out what has changed recently, see the page What's New or subscribe to the group ntireader-announce, a low volume group for announcements.


The goals the project are

  1. Create an online dictionary that is easy to use for everybody interested in Buddhism, including lay people reading Buddhist texts, students, translators, and academics. If you are looking at a large chunk of Chinese Buddhist text but not sure what it means then this is for you. See notes on the Casual use for a private translation workflow on ways that you can use the web site for this purpose.
  2. Create electronic tools that are useful for lingustic analysis of Buddhist texts, including identification of specialist Buddhist terms and comparison of Chinese and Sanskrit texts. If your goal is to translate the Mahāyāna Tripiṭaka, then this website and GitHub project is especially for you. See the workflow described in the section Project team member for a publicly available translation.
  3. Share the source code and content with the general public. If you want to reuse source code or contribute source code or data then the GitHub project is built for you.

Sources, Reuse, and Development

This site and content is copyright of Nan Tien Institute, Australia. Assets may be copied, and re-used from the buddhist-dictionary GitHub project at under the terms and conditions listed here.

The Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License (CCASE 3.0). applies to the content in the word and character dictionaries this site. The primary source for the word and character dictionaries is the CC-CEDICT Chinese - English dictionary, which also uses the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License. That license applies to the content in the word and character dictionaries this site as well, including the additional content in the dictionaries that does not derive from cc-cedict. Additional vocabulary was derived from the Corpus listed on this web site and from consultation with the references listed in the References page.

The source code for this site is site is licensed under the Apache 2.0 license.

The materials provided on this site are provided in a best of effort manner. There is no guarantee that they site will work bug free. The information provided has not been reviewed by experts but, rather contributed as an open source effort. There is no official endorsement of the web site or information provided on it.

The linguistic artifacts for the NTI Reader are kept in the NTI Buddhist Text Reader public GitHub project. The dictionary and software can be used for other, non-Buddhist texts as well. The non-Buddhist corpus content has been separated into the sibling web site and related GitHub project.


The NTI Reader was built by the NTI Reader project contributors as a series of experiments beginning in 2013 for the purposes of self education, as a tool to help in Buddhist study and Fo Guang Shan translation activities, and for anybody in general. For more detail about the NTI Reader see Publications.

Chrome Plugins

You might also enjoy the NTI Reader Buddhist Dictionary Chrome Plugin and the Mahāvyutpatti Buddhist Dictionary Chrome Plugin.

Integrating with the NTI Reader

You can lookup words with a link constructed like this:[Text to lookup]


Thank you to the contributors who did not submit directly via GitHub:

  1. Venerable You Zai
  2. Michael Murphy - translation phrases from Studies on Humanistic Buddhism
  3. Fo Guang Shan Institute of Humanistic Buddhism - Glosary of Humanistic Buddhism