Kaka, aka: Kāka, Kākā; 9 Definition(s)


Kaka means something in Buddhism, Pali, 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.

In Hinduism

Ayurveda (science of life)

Kāka (काक)—Sanskrit word for a bird corresponding to “crow”. This animal is from the group called Prasaha (‘carnivorous birds’). Prasaha itself is a sub-group of the group of animals known as Jāṅghala (living in high ground and in a jungle).

(Source): archive.org: Sushruta samhita, Volume I
Ayurveda book cover
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.


1a) Kāka (काक).—(Mt.) a hill touching the sea.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 18. 76.

1b) A bird; a vāhana of Sūcīmukha.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 7. 455; IV. 24. 44.
(Source): Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
Purāṇa book cover
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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.

Vāstuśāstra (architecture)

Kākā (काका, “female crow”) refers to the seventh of eight yoni (womb), according to the Mānasāra. Yoni is the fourth of the āyādiṣaḍvarga, or “six principles” that constitute the “horoscope” of an architectural or iconographic object. Their application is intended to “verify” the measurements of the architectural and iconographic object against the dictates of astrology that lay out the conditions of auspiciousness.

The particular yoni (eg., kākā) of all architectural and iconographic objects (settlement, building, image) must be calculated and ascertained. This process is based on the principle of the remainder. An arithmetical formula to be used in each case is stipulated, which engages one of the basic dimensions of the object (breadth, length, or perimeter/circumference). The first, third, fifth and seventh yonis are considered auspicious and therefore to be preferred, and the rest, inauspicious and to be avoided.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Vāstu-śāstra
Vāstuśāstra book cover
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Vāstuśāstra (वास्तुशास्त्र, vastu-shastra) refers to the knowledge of architecture. It is a branch of ancient Indian science dealing with topics such architecture, construction, sculpture and their relation with the cosmic universe.

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

Slave of King Canda Pajjota.

His father was non human, and he himself could travel sixty leagues a day. When Pajjota discovered that Jivaka had fled, after administering to him some medicine containing ghee, he sent Kaka to overtake Jivaka and bring him back, giving Kaka strict injunctions not to eat anything offered by Jivaka.

Kaka came upon the physician at Kosambi having his breakfast. Jivaka invited him to eat, but he refused. In the end, however, he consented to eat half a myrobalan, which he thought would be harmless, but into which Jivaka had introduced some drug hidden in his finger nail. Kaka purged violently and was very alarmed. Jivaka told him that all he desired was for him to be slightly delayed and left him, after having handed over to him the elephant Bhaddavatika, which he had used in his flight. Vin.i.277f; DhA.i.196.

(Source): Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
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Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).


kāka : (m.) a crow.

(Source): BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

Kāka, (onomat. , cp. Sk. kāka; for other onomat. relatives see note on gala) the crow; freq. in similes: S. I, 124= Sn. 448; J. I, 164. Its thievish ways are described at DhA. III, 352; said to have ten bad qualities A. V, 149; J. I, 342; III, 126; kākā vā kulalā vā Vin. IV, 40.—As bird (of the dead) frequenting places of interment and cremation, often with other carcass-eating animals (sigāla, gijjha) Sn. 201; PvA. 198 (=dhaṅka); cp. kākoḷa.—In cpds. often used derisively.—f. kākī J. II, 39, 150; III, 431.

—āmasaka “touching as much as a crow, ” attr. of a person not enjoying his meals DhA. IV, 16; DhsA. 404; —uṭṭepaka a crow-scarer, a boy under fifteen, employed as such in the monastery grounds Vin. I, 79 cp. 371. —opamā the simile of the crow DhA. II, 75. —orava “crow-cawing, ” appld to angry and confused words Vin. I, 239, cp. IV. 82; —ôlūka crows and owls J. II, 351; DhA. I, 50; Mhbv 15; —guyha (tall) enough to hide a crow (of young corn, yava) J. II, 174; cp. J. trsl. II. 122; —nīḷa a crow’s nest J. II, 365; —paññā “crow-wisdom, ” i.e. foolishness which leads to ruin through greed J. V, 255, 258; cp. VI, 358; —paṭṭanaka a deserted village, inhabited only by crows J. VI, 456; —pāda crow’s foot or footmark Vism. 179 (as pattern); —peyya “(so full) that a crow can easily drink of it, ” full to the brim, overflowing, of a pond: samatittika k° “with even banks and drinkable for crows” (i.e. with the water on a level with the land) D. I, 244; S. II, 134 (do.); D. II, 89; M. I, 435; A. III, 27; J. II, 174; Ud. 90; cp. note to J. trsl. II. 122; PvA. 202. See also peyya. —bhatta “a crow’s meal, ” i.e. remnants left from a meal thrown out for the crows J. II, 149; —vaṇṇa “crow-coloured” N. of a king Mhvs 2211; —vassa the cry of a crow Vin. II, 17; —sīsa the head of a crow J. II, 351; as adj. : having a crow’s head, appld to a fabulous flying horse D. II, 174; cp. J. II, 129; —sūra a “crow-hero, ” appl. to a shameless, unconscientious fellow Dh. 244; DhA. III, 352; —ssaraka (having a voice) sounding like a crow Vin. I, 115. (Page 202)

(Source): Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary
Pali book cover
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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.

India history and geogprahy

Kāka (काक) is the name of a tribe mentioned in the Gupta inscriptions. The Gupta empire (r. 3rd-century CE), founded by Śrī Gupta, covered much of ancient India and embraced the Dharmic religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. We know of the Kākas, an autonomous community mentioned in the Allahabad Inscription of Samudragupta. In Eastern Malwa we have two ancient place-names connected with the Kākas. One is the hill now called Sāñcī hill (the ancient) Kākanāda. The other is an ancient village called Kāka-pura, some 20 miles north of Bhilsa, and full of ancient monuments. Also see Kākanāda: the name of a locality mentioned in the Gupta inscription No. 5.

(Source): archive.org: Personal and geographical names in the Gupta inscriptions
India history book cover
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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.

Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

kāka (काक).—m (S) A crow.

--- OR ---

kākā (काका).—m ( H) A paternal uncle. This meaning is rather that of the Hindustani word . In Marathi kākā is generally used as a respectful com- pellation for a paternal uncle, an elderly cousin, or other elderly male person. See vyāvahārika nāva. kākā māmā karaṇēṃ To address flatteringly or persuasively.

(Source): DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary
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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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