Dakshinamurti, aka: Dakṣiṇāmūrti, Dakshina-murti; 10 Definition(s)


Dakshinamurti means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India. 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.

The Sanskrit term Dakṣiṇāmūrti can be transliterated into English as Daksinamurti or Dakshinamurti, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Shilpashastra (iconography)

Dakshinamurti in Shilpashastra glossary... « previous · [D] · next »

Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति) refers to “knowledge aspects”. It is one of the five classes of śivamūrti (‘image of Śiva’).

Dakṣiṇāmūrti refers to an image (mūrti) of an aspect of Śiva. Dakṣiṇā literally means “facing south”. The Pūrva-kāraṇāgama states that the figures of Śiva in the dakṣiṇā-mūrti aspect should not have near them the figure of the Devi. The colour, according to the Kāraṇāgama, of the dakṣiṇā-mūrti aspect of Śiva is to be white.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śilpa-śāstra

1) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is the name of a deity depicted in the Aruṇācaleśvar or Arunachaleswara Temple in Thiruvannamalai (Tiruvaṇṇāmalai) which is one of the Pañcasabhā or “five halls where Śiva is said to have danced”.—Dakṣiṇāmūrti is represented seated on a tiger’s skin in the position called vīrāsana (left leg folded and right leg hanging down below the seat). In the upper right hand he carries the rosary and in the upper left hand he carries the agni (fire). The lower right hand is in upadeśa pose and the lower left hand holds the Vedas or pustaka (book). The hastas held in the upper right hand and the upper left hand are kaṭaka-hasta, and the hasta held in the lower right hand is vyākhyāna-mudrā and the hasta held in the lower left hand is siṃha-karṇa/vismaya. While depicting in Bharatanatyam, Dakṣiṇāmūrti is represented in aindra-maṇḍala or ekapāda in araimandi. The upper right and left hands are in kapittha-hasta and the lower right hand is in haṃsāsya and the lower left hand is in kuvi-patāka or alapadma. Sometimes the lower right hand can also be in kapittha-hasta.

2) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also depicted in the Jambukeswarar Temple in Tiruvānaikoyil (Thiruvanaikaval).—In this sannidhi, [Dakṣiṇāmūrti] is found with the same attributes as mentioned earlier. His plentiful hair falls over his shoulders. As a Guru, he teaches his doctrines to his disciples who are collected round him. The dance postures are also the same as discussed earlier.

Note: Dakṣiṇāmūrti is a form of Śiva. He is called Mahā Yogi (the great ascetic) and is seated on a tiger’s skin.

Source: Shodhganga: The significance of the mūla-beras (śilpa)
Shilpashastra book cover
context information

Shilpashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, śilpaśāstra) represents the ancient Indian science (shastra) of creative arts (shilpa) such as sculpture, iconography and painting. Closely related to Vastushastra (architecture), they often share the same literature.

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Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

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Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति), one of the forms of Shiva is the author of many mantras.

Source: Manblunder: Sri Rudram 2.7-13

Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति):—Sanaka, Sana, Sanatkumāra, and Sanāndana are the four great sages who were initiated by Dakṣiṇāmūrti. There was a huge banyan tree under which was seated young Dakṣiṇāmūrti with his aged disciples mentioned above. The banyan tree is the symbolic manifestation of macrocosm from microcosm. From a tiny seed of banyan, a huge tree of banyan grows. This is compared to the formation of gross from subtle. Initiation takes place without any words being exchanged.

Source: Manblunder: Sri Rudram 2.1-2

1) Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति) or simply Dakṣiṇā refers to one of the twenty-three forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Pūrvakāmikāgama (pratimālakṣaṇavidhi-paṭala): first and foremost among the Mūlāgama. The forms of Śiva (eg., Dakṣiṇā-mūrti) are established through a process known as Sādākhya, described as a five-fold process of creation.

2) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also listed among the twenty-eighth forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Vātulāgama: twenty-eighth among the Siddhāntaśaivāgama.

3) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also listed among the eighteen forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Kāraṇāgama (pratimālakṣaṇavidhi-paṭala): the fourth among the Siddhāntaśaivāgamas.

4) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also listed among the ten forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Ajitāgama (under the Raudrarūpa heading): the fifth among the Siddhāntaśaivāgamas.

5) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also listed among the sixteen forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Dīptāgama: the sixth among the Siddhāntaśaivāgamas.

6) Dakṣiṇāmūrti is also listed among the eighteen forms (mūrti) of Śiva mentioned in the Śilparatna (twenty-second adhyāya): a technical treatise by Śrīkumāra on Śilpaśāstra.

Source: Shodhganga: Iconographical representations of Śiva
Shaivism book cover
context information

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.

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Vastushastra (architecture)

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Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति) is a form of Śiva, which is found invariability in almost all the Śaiva temples of Tamilnadu. Shiva, in this form, is depicted as the “Guru who guides his devotes in the right path (dakṣiṇāmārga)” and hence called by this name. The images generally are housed inside the koṣṭas in the southern wall of the shrine, as per the prescription of the Texts.

In this form, Śiva is represented as seated on a rock in lalitāsana. His right hand is in vyākhyānamudra. Other hands hold sarpa, agni and akṣamāla. The four sages (Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatkumara and Sanatsujata) are represented as seated on the foreground. The height of these images varies from one and a half feet to four feet.

Source: Shodhganga: Temples of Salem region Up to 1336 AD
Vastushastra book cover
context information

Vastushastra (वास्तुशास्त्र, vāstuśāstra) refers to the ancient Indian science (shastra) of architecture (vastu), dealing with topics such architecture, sculpture, town-building, fort building and various other constructions. Vastu also deals with the philosophy of the architectural relation with the cosmic universe.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

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The word “Dakṣiṇāmūrti” is a composite word consisting of 2 parts; it can be understood two-fold:

1. Dakṣiṇā Mūrti - One whose Mūrti (form) is facing South. This is Here Dakṣiṇā means south.

2. Dakshin Amurti - One who is Dakshin and also Amurti (both adjectives). One who is skilful and formless. Here Dakshiṇā means Skilful, Skilful in removing the ignorance.

Source: Red Zambla: Dakshinamurthy Stotram by Shankara-acharya

Dakṣiṇāmūrti is a Śaivite iconographical form which appears in Indian art from the later Pallava period onwards. It was a stereotyped installation on the southern devakoṣṭha in any Śiva temple from the early Cōḻa period. Deviating from this established pattern, some of the Viṣṇu temples, called Navatiruppatis, on both banks of the River Tāmiraparaṇi in the Far South of India have these images installed on the devakoṣṭhas, grīvakoṣṭhas, and talas of the vimānas in Viṣṇu temples.

Source: South Asian Studies: Volume 27, Issue 2, 2011

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Dakshinamurti in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [D] · next »

Dakṣiṇāmūrti (दक्षिणामूर्ति).—m. a Tāntric form of Śiva.

Derivable forms: dakṣiṇāmūrtiḥ (दक्षिणामूर्तिः).

Dakṣiṇāmūrti is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms dakṣiṇā and mūrti (मूर्ति).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
context information

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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