Ahamkara, aka: Ahaṅkāra, Ahaṃkāra, Ahankara, Aham-kara; 12 Definition(s)
Ahamkara means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Buddhism, Pali, Marathi. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.
Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)
Ahaṃkāra (अहंकार, “ego”):—In Hindu iconology, Kālī (‘goddess of time’) holds a
severed head in one of her hands. The head represents the ego (the notion of individuality). The severed head reminds all living beings that there is no escape from time (which is represented as Kālī).
Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.
Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)
Ahamkara: Buddhi generates Ahamkara (the I-doer) or ego, which has the sense of possessiveness. Ahamkara determines whether an object is his or not. Its dominant quality is Rajas.Source: bhagavadgitausa.com: Kashmir Saivism
Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.
Yoga (school of philosophy)
Ahaṃkāra (अहंकार) is a Sanskrit word referring to the “individuality, ego”. It is one of the fourteen Adhyātma (pertaining to the body) mentioned in the Subālopaniṣad (fifth section). The corresponding Ādhibhūta (pertaining to the elements) is called ahaṃkartavya (that which is done by the self) and the corresponding Adhidaivata (presiding deity) is rudra. Accordingly, “the nādis form their bond (or connect them). He who moves in the ego (ahaṃkāra), in ahaṃkartavya, in rudra, in the nādis, in prāṇa, in vijñāna, in ānanda, in the ākāśa of the heart and within all else—That is Ātman. It is that which should be worshipped. It is without old age, death, fear, sorrow or end.”Source: Wisdom Library: Yoga
Yoga is originally considered a branch of Hindu philosophy (astika), but both ancient and modern Yoga combine the physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga teaches various physical techniques also known as āsanas (postures), used for various purposes (eg., meditation, contemplation, relaxation).
Purana and Itihasa (epic history)
Ahaṃkāra (अहंकार) refers to the “cosmic ego”, according to the Śivapurāṇa 2.1.6, while explaining and enumerating the principles (tattvas):—“from Prakṛti came into being the Mahat (cosmic Intellect), from Mahat the three Guṇas. Ahaṃkāra (the cosmic ego) arose therefrom in three forms according to the three Guṇas”.
Note: The Ego (Ahaṃkāra) is threefold according to the qualities of Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. In the present enumeration it is counted as one.Source: archive.org: Siva Purana - English Translation
Ahaṅkāra (अहङ्कार).—One of the tatvas; description of.*
- * Vāyu-purāṇa 103. 38; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 2, 36-46.
The Purana (पुराण, purāṇas) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahapuranas total over 400,000 shlokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.
General definition (in Hinduism)
Ahamkara (अहंकार): A Sanskrit term that refers to the ego of one's self, the identification of one's own ego.Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism
Ahaṅkāra literally means ‘egoism’. Ahaṅkāra is that which produces abhimāna, the sense of I and ‘mine.’ According to Sāṅkhyan metaphysics, a large part of which is accepted by Vedānta, ahaṅkāra is the principle of individuation that arises after mahat or buddhi in the process of evolution from prakṛti (nature). It is regarded as a substance since it is the material cause of other substances like the mind or the sense-organs. Through its action the different puruṣas (individual selves) become endowed each with a separate mental background. These puruṣas identify themselves with the acts of prakṛti through ahaṅkāra.
At the individual level it makes the puruṣa feel that he receives the sensations through the senses and the mind, and decides about appropriate action, through the intellect. At the cosmic level, the five senses of cognition (jñānendriyas), the five organs of action (karmendriyas), the mind (manas) and the five subtle elements like the earth (tanmātras) are produced out of ahaṅkāra.
In some works of Vedānta, ahaṅkāra is considered as a function of antahkaraṇa (internal instrument or mind), responsible for ego-sense and possessiveness.Source: Hindupedia: The Hindu Encyclopedia
Languages of India and abroad
ahaṃkāra : (m.) egotism; arrogance.Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary
Ahaṃkāra refers to: selfishness, egotism, arrogance (see also mamaṃkāra) M.III, 18, 32; S.II, 253; III, 80, 136, 169 sq.; IV, 41, 197, 202; A.I, 132 sq.; III, 444; Ud.70; Nett 127, and frequent passim. (Page 91)
Note: ahaṃkāra is a Pali compound consisting of the words ahaṃ and kāra.Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary
Pali is the language of the Tipiṭaka, which is the sacred canon of Theravāda Buddhism and contains much of the Buddha’s speech. Closeley related to Sanskrit, both languages are used interchangeably between religions.
ahaṅkāra (अहंकार).—m (S) Pride, haughtiness, conceit. 2 Conscious feeling or regard; apprehension of self as an existence distinct from the Deity or from the World without; assertion or assurance of personality.Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary
ahaṅkāra (अहंकार).—m Pride; conscious feeling; conceit; assertion of personality.Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
Marathi is an Indo-European language having over 70 million native speakers people in (predominantly) Maharashtra India. Marathi, like many other Indo-Aryan languages, evolved from early forms of Prakrit, which itself is a subset of Sanskrit, one of the most ancient languages of the world.
(-raḥ) 1. Pride. 2. Individuality, sense of self. 3. One of the elements of creation, consciousness, individualization. E. aham 1, and kāra what makes; thinking highly of one’s self.Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary
Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.
Full-text (+39): Ahankaratattva, Sahankara, Mamankara, Abhimana, Kapala, Ahankaravat, Niravadya, Ahankriti, Ahankarin, Ahankrita, Nirahankara, Vikarya, Antahkarana, Caturbhuja, Maminkara, Bhutatanmargasarga, Ashtakarana, Ashtadashatattvani, Nirahamkara, Ahakartavya.
Search found 57 books and stories containing Ahamkara, Ahaṅkāra, Ahaṃkāra, Ahankara, Aham-kara, Ahaṃ-kāra; (plurals include: Ahamkaras, Ahaṅkāras, Ahaṃkāras, Ahankaras, karas, kāras). You can also click to the full overview containing English textual excerpts. Below are direct links for the most relevant articles:
Laghu-yoga-vasistha (by K. Narayanasvami Aiyar)
Part 3 - The Story of Bhīma, Bhāsa and Dṛḍha < [Chapter IV - Sthiti-prakaraṇa]
Part 10 - The Story of Kaca < [Chapter VI - Nirvāṇa-prakaraṇa]
A History of Indian Philosophy Volume 1 (by Surendranath Dasgupta)
Part 13 - Mahat and Ahaṃkāra < [Chapter VII - The Kapila and the Pātañjala Sāṃkhya (yoga)]
Part 11 - Locus and Object of Ajñāna, Ahaṃkāra, and Antaḥkaraṇa < [Chapter X - The Śaṅkara School Of Vedānta]
Part 5 - Sāṃkhya kārikā, Sāṃkhya sūtra, Vācaspati Miśra and Vijñāna Bhiksu < [Chapter VII - The Kapila and the Pātañjala Sāṃkhya (yoga)]
A History of Indian Philosophy Volume 4 (by Surendranath Dasgupta)
Part 8 - Ajñāna and Ego-hood (ahaṃkāra) < [Chapter XXIX-XXX - Controversy Between the Dualists and the Monists]
Part 1 - Ontology < [Chapter XXVII - A General Review of the Philosophy of Madhva]
Part 4 - Kapila’s philosophy in the Bhāgavata-purāṇa < [Chapter XXIV - The Bhāgavata-purāṇa]
Sushruta Samhita, volume 3: Sharirasthana (by Kaviraj Kunja Lal Bhishagratna)
The Garuda Purana (by Manmatha Nath Dutt)
Chapter CXLI - descriptions of kings who came after Janamejaya < [Brihaspati (Nitisara) Samhita]
Chapter XIV - A brief discourse on Yoga < [Agastya Samhita]
Subala Upanishad of Shukla-yajurveda (by K. Narayanasvami Aiyar)