Ask-A-Godo: What does ordination as a bodhisattva mean and how does it effect zen practice? 28 December, 2012 by Taiun Jean-Pierre Faure Read Online Download PDF The ideal of Mahayana Buddhism is the bodhisattva. Bodhi means awakening while sattva means existence. The bodhisattva is therefore an awakening being, awakening existence. Awakening is at the heart of all existence.