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Durga, aka: Durgā; 9 Definition(s)


Durga means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. Check out some of the following descriptions and leave a comment if you want to add your own contribution to this article.

In Hinduism

Dharmaśāstra (religious law)

Durga (दुर्ग) refers to “fort”. It is used throughout Dharmaśāstra literature such as the Manusmṛti and the Baudhāyana-dharmasūtra.

Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-śāstra

Durga (दुर्ग):—The setting up of fort is another duty of king. While discussing on the suitable place for royal resident, the concept of fort is introduced. This is very much important for the security of not only the king himself but also the capital itself. There are six kinds of forts.

These are named thus:

  1. Dhānvadurga (surrounded by desert),
  2. Mahīdurga (built with stone or bricks),
  3. Abdurga (surrounded by water),
  4. Vārkṣadurga (surrounded by forest),
  5. Nṛdurga (surrounded by elephants, horses chariots and army)
  6. and Giridurga (on a mountain)

The king is supposed to occupy any kind of these f orts. From the security view point, these forts are very much reliable. If the king reside in any one of these forts enemy cannot assail him.

The Śāntiparva of Mahābhārata recognizes that among these six forts, Nṛdurga is the best because this type of Durga is very tough for enemies to capture.

But Kautilya recognizes only four types of durgas. These are—

  1. Audakdurga (water fort),
  2. Pārvatadurga (mountain fort),
  3. Dhānvadurga (desert fort)
  4. and Vanadurga (forest fort).
Source: Shodhganga: Facts of society in the Manusamhita

about this context:

Dharmaśāstra (धर्मशास्त्र, dharma-shastra) is a category of Hindu literature containing important instructions regarding religious law, ethics, economics, jurisprudence and more. It is categorised as smṛti, an important and authorative selection of books dealing with the Hindu lifestyle.

Śāktism (Śākta philosophy)

Durgā (दुर्गा, “invincible”):—Name of one of the sixty-four mātṛs to be worshipped during Āvaraṇapūjā (“Worship of the Circuit of Goddesses”, or “Durgā’s Retinue”), according to the Durgāpūjātattva. They should be worshipped with either the five upācāras or perfume and flowers.

Her mantra is as follows:

ॐ दुर्गायै नमः
oṃ durgāyai namaḥ.

A similar mantra is mentioned by the same text, prefixed with ह्रीं  (hrīṃ), to be worshipped at the goddess’s right.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śāktism

about this context:

Śākta (शाक्त, shakta) or Śāktism (shaktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devī) is revered and worshipped. Śāka literature includes a range of scriptures, including various tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.


Durgā (दुर्गा).—Name of a river originating from Vindhya, a holy mountains (kulaparvata) in Bhārata, according to the Varāhapurāṇa chapter 85. There are settlements (janapada) where Āryas and Mlecchas dwell who drink water from these rivers.

Bhārata is a region south of Hemādri, once ruled over by Bharata (son of Ṛṣabha), whose ancestral lineage can be traced back to Svāyambhuva Manu, who was created by Brahmā, who was in turn created by Nārāyaṇa, the unknowable all-pervasive primordial being.

The Varāhapurāṇa is categorised as a Mahāpurāṇa, and was originally composed of 24,000 metrical verses, possibly originating from before the 10th century. It is composed of two parts and Sūta is the main narrator.

Source: Wisdom Library: Varāha-purāṇa

A fort or durga is perhaps surrounded by a ditch, always filled with water. There are four kinds of durgas. the first three kinds of durgas are protected by hills and ditches. The fourth kind of durga is called the Kṛtrima, i.e., artificial. It is distinguished by a rampart that runs round it. It has only one gate known as the svastika and has a Kumārīpura in it. The ditch in front of the gate is about 8 x 10 hastas deep and wide (according to some 8 x 9 hastas). River-fort (nadī-durga) is also mentioned.

Source: Google Books: Cultural History from the Vāyu Purāna

1) Durga (दुर्ग).—Fortified places unknown under Pṛthu; six kinds of: Giridurga is the best; described.1 also four kinds of; three natural and one artificial; contain different outways; Kumāripuram, villages, towns surrounded by a moat, also mountains and rivers;2 desert, mountain and water; man left the tree home for this; last was artificial; made by man with ramparts, moats and Kumāripuram;3 of the southern country.4

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 10. 32; 217. 6-87; V. I. 6. 18.
  • 2) Vāyu-purāṇa 8. 98, 108 ff.
  • 3) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 7. 92, 101 ff.
  • 4) Vāyu-purāṇa 45. 128.

2a) Durgā (दुर्गा).—One of the names of Yogamāya propitiated by Devakī and others for Kṛṣṇa's safe return from the cave of Jāmbavān;1 worship of;2 a Śakti;3 worshipped in the grahabali Icon of.4

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa X. 2. 11; 56. 35.
  • 2) Ib. XI. 27. 29.
  • 3) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 32. 24, 48 and 59; IV. 19. 81; 39. 57.; 44. 76.
  • 4) Matsya-purāṇa 93. 16; 260. 55-66.

2b) A R. originating from the Vindhya Mountains.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 16. 33; Vāyu-purāṇa 45. 103.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

about this context:

The Purāṇas (पुराण, purana) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahāpurāṇas total over 400,000 ślokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.

General definition (in Hinduism)

Durga (दुर्ग, ‘hard to approach’) occurs in the Rigveda as a neuter substantive only, sometimes in the sense of ‘fort’, ‘stronghold’.

Source: archive.org: Vedic index of Names and Subjects

Durgā’s feminine power contains the combined energies of all the gods. Each of her weapons was given to her by the various gods: Rudra’s trident, Vishnu’s discus, Indra’s thunderbolt, Brahma’s Kamaṇḍalu, etc. etc. According to a narrative in the Devi Māhātmya, Durgā appeared as a warrior goddess to fight an Asura (an anti-god) named Mahiṣāsura or ‘buffalo-demon’.

Source: Red Zambala: Hindu Icons and Symbols | Devi

The Goddess who is known as the ultimate reality is the adi-parashakti, Goddess Durga . In Shaktism, She is, was and will be only owner and source of this universe and all other universes and is regarded as dynamic form of ultimate reality, Param-Brahman. Shaktas consider her dynamic Param Brahman and Param Brahman is considered as Static Adi parashakti. When there is no universe, they both unite from which universe is created and when Universe is created, Adi parashakti manifests herself as dynamic in feminine form like Goddess Parvati, Goddess Durga, Goddess Lakshmi and Goddess Saraswati. She is tridevi - the eternal beloved consort of trimurti (Godhead - the three aspects of God)

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

Relevant definitions

Search found 168 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Giridurga (गिरिदुर्ग).—The best of six hill fortresses.** Matsya-purāṇa 217. 7.
Mahīdurga (महीदुर्ग).—One of six kinds of fortresses.** Matsya-purāṇa 217. 6.
Dhanvadurga (धन्वदुर्ग) is ‘the fortification in the midst of a desert’, called ...
Naradurga (नरदुर्ग).—One of the 6 kinds of fortresses.** Matsya-purāṇa 217. 6.
The autumnal Durgā Pūjā, the ten-lunar-day worship of the goddess Durgā, also known as Caṇḍī...
The Durgāpūjātattva (दुर्गापूजातत्त्व, “The truth concerning the rite of Durgā”)...
Durgābhaktitaraṅgiṇī (दुर्गाभक्तितरङ्गिणी, “A River of Devotion to Durgā”):&mdas...
Viṣṇudurga (विष्णुदुर्ग).—Viṣṇudurga, which are found in good number. This form of Durga is com...
Durgāpūjāviveka (दुर्गापूजाविवेक):—Name of a Sanskrit work written by Śrīnātha Ācāryac...
Nṛdurga (नृदुर्ग) refers to type of “fort”, characterised as being surround by a...
Abdurga (अब्दुर्ग) refers to type of “fort”, characterised as being surround by ...
Vārkṣadurga (वार्क्षदुर्ग) refers to type of “fort”, characterised as being cove...
The Jaladurga (जलदुर्ग) consists of that place which is surrounded by swift, and unfordable ...
The Vanadurga (वनदुर्ग) is a tract of land surrounded by impenetrable forests and trees. (Se...
Baladurga (बलदुर्ग) or Nṛdurga is that line of defence which consists in the dispositions of...

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Search found 279 books containing Durga or Durgā. You can also click to the full overview containing English textual excerpts. Below are direct links for the 20 most relevant articles:

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