Diksa, aka: Dīkṣā, Diksha; 13 Definition(s)


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

The Sanskrit term Dīkṣā can be transliterated into English as Diksa or Diksha, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Dīkṣā (काम्य, “दीक्षा”) refers to the Śaiva “initiation rite”.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śaivism

Diksa: In Kashmir Saivism Diksa means to give spiritual knowledge and destroy the fetters of Pasa-hood. Guru initiation is lighting the Divine flame in the spiritual heart of the disciple.

Source: bhagavadgitausa.com: Kashmir Saivism

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा, “initiation”) is performed by a healthy Ādiśaiva as part of his essential priestly duties in the Śiva temple.—Dīkṣā is popularly understood as “dīyate kṣīyate iti dīkṣā”—“that which grants mokṣa, while destroying the karma of the initiate”. The process of dīkṣā burns the good and bad karma of the initiate with the fire of jñāna. Dīkṣā is a process of spiritual progress that was offered to all the four varṇa. The Ādiśaiva dīkṣā is considered in detail here, with an end note on the other varṇas. Dīkṣā can also be understood as a process of cleansing and energy transfer.

Dīkṣā is performed in many ways by a qualified Guru and classified into many categories:

  1. Cākṣuṣī-dīkṣā
  2. Sparṣa-dīkṣā
  3. Vācikī-dīkṣā
  4. Mānasī-dīkṣā
  5. Śāstrī-dīkṣā
  6. Yoga-dīkṣā
  7. Hautrī-dīkṣā

The Ācāryābhiṣekavidhipaṭala of Kāmikāgama states that the Ādiśaiva Guru is the most superior in dīkṣā for everyone and in rituals of pratiṣṭhā, utsava, snapana, prāyaścitta, abhiṣeka, vyākhyāna and in both ātmārthapūjā and parārthapūjā. In dīkṣā, a Brāhmaṇa can initiate the other three varṇas, a Kṣatriya can initiate Vaiśyas and Śūdras, and a Vaiśya can initiate a Śūdra. They can also initiate those from their own jāti. In case of sthāpana of a calaliṅga (for ātmārthapūjā), all three varṇas, starting from Brāhmaṇas, are qualified. Śudras can also undergo śūdra-dīkṣā and establish their own calaliṅga for ātmārtha worship. Naiṣṭhikas can also establish bāṇaliṅga and kṣaṇikaliṅga.

Source: Shodhganga: Temple management in the Āgamas
Shaivism book cover
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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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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा):—The consort of Ugra (aspect of Śiva, as in, one of the eight names of Rudra) according to the Pādma-purāṇa. (according to the Viṣṇu-purāṇa she is called Vikesī)

Source: Wisdom Library: Elements of Hindu Iconograpy
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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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—Dīkṣā is the vrata that expels sin and increases Jñāna (wisdom). Those who are to be blessed fall into three categories. The person who belongs to the first category is called Vijñānakala; the second is Pralayakala; and the third is Sakala. Vijñānakala is free from sin alone. Pralayakala is free from sins and Karmans. Sakala has everything from Kalā to the earth. The Dīkṣās to be practised by the three classes of persons are of different kinds. Dīkṣā is classified into two: "Nirādhāra and Sādhāra.

Nirādhāra Dīkṣā is performed for the sake of Vijñānakala and Pralayakala. Sādhāra Dīkṣā is prescribed for the third class of people, the Sakalas.

Source: archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia

1a) Dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—Wife of Ugra, (Dīkṣita) son Santāna.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 10. 83; Vāyu-purāṇa 27. 55.

1b) In connection with Lalitā's worship; Śāmbhavī Dīkṣā is the knowledge that comes at once by the Guru's look, speech or touch; Mānasi Dīkṣā where the disciple is initiated by the Guru in secret being pleased with his conduct; first was Kriyā Dīkṣā which consists of purificatory bath and recital of devīsūkta and puruṣasūkta with 16 upacāras; offering of the puṣpāñjali with sahasrākṣara vidya; samādhi; the poor and disabled worship with bhāvanadravyas (i.e.) meditation in mind as if doing all of them; place of meditation or japasthāna; thinking of Bhaitrarī, then the ŚaṢa-Sa group of 42 letters, Pañcākṣara, Caturakṣara, etc.; contemplate on Varamūrtis and then Svaraśaktis and Varṇaśaktis; installation of Cakreśvarī and of Ananga Kusumadevī in the heart seeing the Mudrā; meditation of Manujapam pleases Devī.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 43 (whole) and 44, 1 to 151.

1c) As consort of a Brahmana Soma.*

  • * Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 8. 8.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
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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.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा) is one of the most important rituals of the Śāktas. It is described in detail in Śāradātilaka-tantra, chapters III-V, Prapañcasāra-tantra V-VI, and Śrītattva-cintāmaṇi II-V. The ceremony includes some preliminary rites. Dīkṣā is so called because it imparts divine knowledge and destroys evil. The Tāntrikas derive the word dīkṣā from √dā ‘give’ and √kṣi ‘destroy’ for which cp. Prapañcasāra V. 2.

Dīkṣā is of four kinds:

  1. kriyāvatī,
  2. varṇamayī,
  3. kalātma or kalāvatī,
  4. vedhamayī.
Source: JSTOR: Tāntric Dīkṣā by Surya Kanta
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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.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा)—One of the eleven wives of Rudra, called a Rudrāṇī.

Source: Wisdom Library: Hinduism

India history and geogprahy

Dīkṣā.—(HA), initiation as a monk or recluse; initiation into any doctrine. Note: dīkṣā is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—f (S) A course of austerities or of the rites and ceremonies of some religious vow. v ghē. 2 fig. Conduct, practice, a course of proceeding. v dhara. 3 fig. Engagement in or entrance upon a great undertaking gen. v ghē. 4 fig. Initiation in the mysteries of any art or sect. v kara, hō.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—f A course of austerities or of the rites and ceremonies of some religious vow. v ghē. Engagement in or entrance upon a great undertaking gen. v ghē.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
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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.

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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—[dīkṣ-bhāve-a]

1) (a) Consecration for a religious ceremony, initiation in general; अजस्रदीक्षाप्रयतस्य मद्गुरोः क्रियाविघाताय कथं प्रवर्तसे (ajasradīkṣāprayatasya madguroḥ kriyāvighātāya kathaṃ pravartase) R.3.44,65. (b) Receiving the initiatory mantra.

2) A ceremony preliminary to a sacrifice; Bhāg.3.13.37.

3) A ceremony or religious rite in general; विवाहदीक्षाम् (vivāhadīkṣām), R.3.33; Ku.7.1,8, 24.

4) Investiture with the sacred thread.

5) Dedicating oneself to a particular object, self-devotion; विश्व- त्राणैकदीक्षाः (viśva- trāṇaikadīkṣāḥ); विष्णुपादादिकेशान्तवर्णनस्तोत्रम् (viṣṇupādādikeśāntavarṇanastotram) 33.

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Dīkṣā (दीक्षा).—f.

(-kṣā) 1. Sacrificing, offering oblations. 2. Worshipping in general. 3. Engaging in a course of austerities. 4. Certain ceremonies preliminary to a cacrifice. 5. Receiving the initiatory Mantra or incantation. E. to give, (knowledge,) and kṣi to destroy, (sin;) deriv. irr. or dīkṣ to initiate, &c. affixes a and ṭāp .

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary
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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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