Alakananda, aka: Alakanandā, Alaka-nanda; 5 Definition(s)
Alakananda means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. 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.
Purana and Itihasa (epic history)
Alakanandā (अलकनन्दा).—One of the four rivers originating from the “river of the sky”, according to the Varāhapurāṇa chapter 82. This ‘river of the sky’ starts at the ‘ocean of the sky’ and, being agitated by the elephant of Indra, falls at the top of mount Meru, where at the bottom it forms into these four rivers. Meru is one of the seven mountains located in Jambūdvīpa, which is ruled over by Āgnīdhra, a grandson of Svāyambhuva Manu, who was created by Brahmā, who was in turn created by Nārāyaṇa, the unknowable all-pervasive primordial being.Source: Wisdom Library: Varāha-purāṇa
Alakanandā (अलकनन्दा).—River Gaṅgā of devaloka. The river gaṅgā of the earth when it flows through devaloka is called Alakanandā and is called Vaitaraṇī when it flows through Pitṛloka (nether world). Kṛṣṇadvaipāyana (Vyāsa) declares that Deva Gaṅgā with crystal pure water flowing in devaloka under the name Alakanandā and Vaitaraṇī of the nether world, a terror to sinners, are the same as the Gaṅgā of the earth. (Ślokas 21 and 22, Chapter 170, Bhāṣā Bhārata, A.P.).
Starting from Viṣṇupāda Alakanandā flows through Devayāna which blazes with the splendour of a crore of beautiful many-storeyed buildings. Flowing from there to Candramaṇḍala (moon) and flooding it completely flows down to Brahmaloka. From there it divides into four rivulets and flows to the four different sides with the names Sītā, Cakṣus, Alakanandā and Bhadrā. Of these Sītā falls on the thickly wooded mountain tops of Mahāmeru and flowing from there through Gandhamādana by the side of Bhadrāśvavarṣa falls down in the eastern ocean. Cakṣus falls on the top of Mālyavān mountain and flowing through Ketumāla falls down in the western ocean. The most sacred of the group, Alakanandā, falls on the mountain of Hemakūṭa and from there flows through Bhāratavarṣa and falls down in the southern ocean. The fourth, Bhadrā, falling on the top of the Mountain, Sṛṅgavān flows to the northern ocean. Of these the most sacred is Alakanandā which flows through Bhāratavarṣa and it is believed that even those who think of taking a bath in that will acquire the benefit of performing yāgas like Aśvamedha and Rājasūya. (Eighth Skandha of Śrī Mahādevībhāgavata).Source: archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia
Alakanandā (अलकनन्दा).—The R. in Kailāsa: a branch of Gaṅgā issuing out of the city of Brahmā descends the southern slopes of Meru. Her course can be traced from the Gandhamādana. Traversing the Hemakūṭa and Himalayas as also the continent of Bharata and dividing itself into seven branches it enters the sea on the south. A bath in this stream is equal to performing aśvamedhas and other sacrifices. A mahānadī: borne by Śiva on his head for more than a hundred years: Elevated Sagara's sons to heaven.*
- * Bhāgavata-purāṇa IV. 6. 24; V. 17. 5 and 9; IX. 29. 42; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 41. 21; 56. 12; Viṣṇu-purāṇa II. 2. 34, 36; 8. 113-20; Vāyu-purāṇa 41. 18. 42. 25-35; 108. 80.
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)
Of many rivers of India, Gaṅgā (Ganges) stands unparalleled and supreme with regard to holiness and the number of places of pilgrimage associated with it. Alakanandā is one of its important tributaries which joins it at an early stage. Taking its birth on the Indo-Tibetan border of Uttar Pradesh, it is joined by four rivers at four different places:
- Nandākinī at Nandaprayāga
- Piṇḍar at Karṇaprayāga
- Mandākinī at Rudraprayāga
- Bhāgīrathī at Devaprayāga
Here-after the rivers merged together go by the name Gaṅgā. The famous Viṣṇu temple at Badarīnātha is situated on the bank of Alakanandā.Source: Hindupedia: The Hindu Encyclopedia
Languages of India and abroad
1) Name of the Gaṅgā, or a river falling into it. ईक्षयालकनन्दाया विधूताशेष- कल्मषः (īkṣayālakanandāyā vidhūtāśeṣa- kalmaṣaḥ) Bhāg.11.29.42.
2) a girl from eight to ten years of age.
Alakanandā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms alaka and nandā (नन्दा).Source: DDSA: The practical 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.
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Search found 12 books and stories containing Alakananda, Alakanandā or Alaka-nanda. You can also click to the full overview containing English textual excerpts. Below are direct links for the most relevant articles:
The Devi Bhagavata Purana (by Swami Vijñanananda)
Chapter 7 - On the Ganges and the Varṣas < [Book 8]
Chapter 12 - On the origin of Gaṅgā < [Book 9]
The Shiva Purana (by J. L. Shastri)
Chapter 40 - Journey to Kailāsa and the vision of Śiva < [Section 2.2 - Rudra-saṃhitā (2): Satī-khaṇḍa]
Chapter 17 - Description of the Jambūdvīpa (jambū-dvīpa) < [Section 5 - Umā-Saṃhitā]
The Padma Purana (by N.A. Deshpande)
Chapter 2 - Nārāyaṇa Grants Boons to Rudra < [Section 6 - Uttara-Khaṇḍa (Concluding Section)]
Chapter 240 - Viṣṇu Incarnates as Vāmana < [Section 6 - Uttara-Khaṇḍa (Concluding Section)]
Chapter 21 - The Greatness of Haridvāra < [Section 6 - Uttara-Khaṇḍa (Concluding Section)]
The Bhagavata Purana (by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada)
Chapter 17 - The Descent of the River Ganges < [Canto V - The Creative Impetus]
Chapter 6 - Brahma Satisfies Lord Siva < [Canto IV - The Creation of the Fourth Order]
Chapter 29 - Bhakti-yoga < [Canto XI - General History]
The Brahma Purana (by G. P. Bhatt)