Wisdom Library Logo

Vishnu, aka: Viṣṇu, Visnu; 10 Definition(s)

Vishnu means something in Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism Check out some of the following descriptions and leave a comment if you want to add your own contribution to this article:

10 Definition(s) from various sources:

Viṣṇu (विष्णु) is a Sanskrit word referring to a deity. Acording to the Nāṭyaśāstra 1.88-93, when Brahmā, Indra and all other gods went to inspect the playhouse (nāṭyamaṇḍapa) designed by Viśvakarmā, he assigned different deities for the protection of the playhouse itself, as well as for the objects relating to dramatic performance (prayoga).

As such, Brahmā assigned Viṣṇu to the third section (joint/knot, parva) of the Jarjara (Indra’s banner staf). The protection of the playhouse was enacted because of the the jealous Vighnas (malevolent spirits), who began to create terror for the actors. The term nāṭyaśāstra is the name of the ancient Indian tradition of performing arts, (e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects.

Added: 18.Jan.2017 | Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra
Rating: -

Viṣṇu is the name given to the cohesive or centripetal tendency of the universe — the Sattva Guṇa. It pervades all existence and is therefore known as "Viṣṇu".  The name can be derived from the roots viṣviṣṇāti — to spread. viṣviṣati — to enter into or from viṣti viveṣṭi — to surround = all these are expressions of pervasion.

In terms of consciousness Viṣṇu is identified with the dream-state (svapna) where things are conceived of as archetypes or prototypes prior to their manifestation. He is the abstract concept of all things whereas Brahmā is their realization in perishable materials.

Viṣṇu is the inner cause, the unseen power by which all things exist. Brahma is concerned with the outer material manifestation of all things, but Viṣṇu is their inner essence. Viṣṇu is the principle of duration and the power that holds the cosmos together. He is therefore the goal of all spiritual and religious paths.

Rating: -

Viṣṇu (विष्णु, “All-pervading”):—One of the twenty-four forms of Viṣṇu through which Nārāyaṇa manifests himself. He is accompanied by a counterpart emanation of Lakṣmī who is named Dhṛti.

Rating: -

Viṣṇu (विष्णु):—One of the male offspring from Mahāsarasvatī (sattva-form of Mahādevī). Also known as Kṛṣṇa, Hṛṣīkeśa, Vāsudeva and Janārdana. Mahāsarasvatī is one of the three primary forms of Devī, the other two being Mahālakṣmī and Mahākālī. Not to be confused with Sarasvatī, she is a more powerful cosmic aspect (vyaṣṭi) of Devi and represents the guṇa (universal energy) named sattva. Also see the Devī Māhātmya, a Sanskrit work from the 5th century, incorporated into the Mārkaṇḍeya-Purāṇa.

Added: 15.Oct.2015 | Wisdom Library: Shaktism
Rating: -

One of the hands that indicate the forms which accord with the character and actions of Brahmā and other Devas.—Viṣṇu: Tripatāka with both hands.

Rating: -

Vishnu is the all-pervading and awe-inspiring ruler of matter and spirit. He is the God of all gods. For fear of the Lord, the sun shines; the wind blows; the fire burns; the rains pour; the stars twinkle; and the sun, the moon, the stars, and the earth move and hold their relative positions in the firmament. Such is the power of His Rta, the cosmic law, which He wrote. He remains unseen, unknown and beyond comprehension but is felt everywhere. His signature is seen in chaos, cosmos, and creation. He holds in Him Time, Death and māyā.

Rating: -

("pervader"). Major deity and member of Hindu trinity with Brahma and Shiva. Seen as the preserver of the universe and embodiment of goodness and mercy. To Vaisnavites, Vishnu is the supreme deity (Isvara) who becomes incarnate in times of crisis and declining dharma. Vishnu is usually depicted standing, holding weapons, or reclining on a serpent.

-- or --

Vishnu (विष्‍णु): A form of God, to whom many Hindus pray. For Vaishnavas, He is the only Ultimate Reality or God. In Trimurti belief, He is the second aspect of God in the Trimurti (also called the Hindu Trinity), along with Brahma and Shiva. Known as the Preserver, He is most famously identified with His Avatars, especially Krishna and Rama.

Rating: -

Vishnu is the protective aspect of the supreme trinity. He is the entity that is most often involved in mortal affairs. Some say he was created by Shiva, others say that he arose out of the cosmic void. Laxmi is his consort. His abode is Vaikunta. He is usually depicted as resting on a giant snake, Adisesha, which is itself floating in an ocean of milk.

He has undertaken ten avatars(incarnations), each to achieve a specific purpose, to avert a specific calamity facing either mankind or the Devas. There are more than ten incarnations attributed to him, but only ten of them are considered major. The list of such avatars varies a bit in different sources. For more about his incarnations, see 'Incarnations of Vishnu'.

He is called the 'brother of Indra', since he was born as a son of Aditi in his Vamana avatar. He is described as being ever desirous of helping the Devas, and an enemy of their half-brothers, the Asuras. He is dark-colored, with mega-varnam (cloud-hued), being one of his epithets. He is generally depicted as having four arms, holding a Sudharshana Chakra (discus), conch, lotus and a mace respectively.

His consort is Laxmi, who is said to have arisen from the ocean of milk in Vaikunta, when it was churned by the Devas and Asuras to obtain Amrit. His followers are known as Vaishnavaite, and many of them wear the 'namam' on their forehead.

Added: 24.Jun.2012 | Apam Napat: Indian Mythology
Rating: -

One of the 108 names of Krishna; Meaning: "All Prevailing Lord"

Rating: -

The Hindu god Vishnu is a preserver and maintainer of order in the universe. In times of spiritual and political decline, Vishnu descends on earth in an incarnation. In the great flood Vishnu took the form of a fish (Matsya) to save primeval man and the sacred Vedas.

Added: 13.Oct.2011 | Lessing Photo Archive: Hinduism
Rating: -

Look for other relevant definitions:

Search found 393 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Viṣṇu-muhūrta
Viṣṇu-muhūrta (विष्णु-मुहूर्त):—Name for a specific portion or phase of the day, used ...
Viṣṇupura
Viṣṇupura (विष्णुपुर):—The abode of the Dūtīs, or the ninety-one female deities of the...
Viṣṇuśakti
Viṣṇuśakti (विष्णुशक्ति), ‘the energy of Kṛṣṇa’ is threefold: parāśakti,...
Viṣṇudūta
Viṣṇudūta (विष्णुदूत).—The messengers of Lord Viṣṇu who come to take perfected devotee...
Viṣṇuloka
Viṣṇuloka (विष्णुलोक) is a Sanskrit word referring to the abode of Lord Viṣṇu.
Dīrgha-viṣṇu
Dīrgha-viṣṇu (दीर्घ-विष्णु)—A holy place on the bank of the Yamunā which Śrī Caitanya ...
Viṣṇubhakti
Viṣṇubhakti (विष्णुभक्ति).—Devotional service to Lord Viṣṇu.
Viṣṇukhaṇḍa
Viṣṇukhaṇḍa (विष्णुखण्ड):—The Viṣṇu-khaṇḍa of the Skandapurāṇa consists of nine sectio...
Viṣṇuvallabhā
Viṣṇuvallabhā (विष्णुवल्लभा) is another name for Tulasī, which is a Sanskrit word referring ...
Viṣṇucchanda
Viṣṇucchanda (विष्णुच्छन्द):—The Sanskrit name for a classification of a ‘temple...
Viṣṇumūrti
Viṣṇumūrti (विष्णुमूर्ति).—The Deity form of the Lord worshiped in the temple.
Viṣṇu Purāṇa
The Viṣṇupurāṇa is eminently Vaiṣṇava and considers Viṣṇu as the supreme being, Suprime Brah...
Maha Vishnu
Maha Vishnu is superior to Vishnu and is equal to Sadasiva, the revealer of Grace and the th...
Vishnu Mudra
Vishnu Mudra (hand gesture of Lord Vishnu) This is one of the hand gestures used to alternat...
Sri Vishnu Bhattopadhyaya
Sri Vishnu Bhattopadhyaya was the disciple of Swamindra Pujyapada. His full name is Sarvajna...

Search through other sources:

Search found 2212 books containing Vishnu, Viṣṇu or Visnu. You can also click to the full overview containing English textual excerpts. Below are direct links for the 20 most relevant articles:


» Click here to see all 2212 search results in a detailed overview.

- Was this explanation helpufll? Leave a comment:

Make this page a better place for research and define the term yourself in your own words.

You have to be a member in order to post comments. Click here to login or click here to become a member.