"Seed", A metaphor for the origin or cause of things, used in the teachings of the Yogacara school. In Hinduism and Buddhism, the Sanskrit term Bīja, literally seed, is used as a metaphor for the origin or cause of things and cognate with bindu. The Om bija in Esoteric Buddhism.
The metaphor is considerably extended in the Consciousness-only teachings of the Yogacara school of Buddhism. According to this theory, all experiences and actions produce bīja as impressions, stored in the alaya (storehouse) consciousness. The external world is produced when the seeds "perfume" this consciousness. This view of bīja has been equated to memes, with the theory itself positing an extreme form of memetics (i.e. reality and existence consist purely of memes).
In Vajrayana Buddhism and Hinduism, the term bīja is used for mystical "seed syllables" contained within mantras. These seeds do not have precise meanings, but are thought to carry connections to spiritual principles. The best-known bīja syllable is Om, first found in the Hindu scriptures the Upanishads.