Kalacakra, aka: Kālacakra, Kala-cakra; 14 Definition(s)

Introduction

Kalacakra means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit, 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.

Alternative spellings of this word include Kalachakra.

In Hinduism

Dhanurveda (science of warfare)

Kalacakra in Dhanurveda glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kālacakra (कालचक्र) refers to a weapon (“wheel of time”, “cycle”). It is a Sanskrit word defined in the Dhanurveda-saṃhitā, which contains a list of no less than 117 weapons. The Dhanurveda-saṃhitā is said to have been composed by the sage Vasiṣṭha, who in turn transmitted it trough a tradition of sages, which can eventually be traced to Śiva and Brahmā.

Source: Wisdom Library: Dhanurveda
Dhanurveda book cover
context information

Dhanurveda (धनुर्वेद) refers to the “knowledge of warfare” and, as an upaveda, is associated with the Ṛgveda. It contains instructions on warfare, archery and ancient Indian martial arts, dating back to the 2nd-3rd millennium BCE.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Dhanurveda from relevant books on Exotic India

Purana

Kalacakra in Purana glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

1a) Kālacakra (कालचक्र).—A chief Vānara.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 7. 235.

1b) Is the solar system: relativity of its movement is illustrated by the Potter's wheel. The sun stands in relation to kālacakra, midway between the Earth and Heaven. Placed on the right side of Meru, the twentyeight nakṣatras including abhijit are fixed on this cakra.1 The seat of mahākāla.2

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa V. 22. 2-11; 23. 3; Matsya-purāṇa 162, 1, 19; Viṣṇu-purāṇa II. 8. 4.
  • 2) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 32. 7. 18-20.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
Purana book cover
context information

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.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Purana from relevant books on Exotic India

Katha (narrative stories)

Kalacakra in Katha glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kālacakra (कालचक्र) was a leader of warriors and transcendent warriors (rathātiratha) in Sunītha and Sūryaprabha’s army, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 47. Accordingly, as the Asura Maya explained the arrangement of warriors in Sunītha’s army: “... and [Kālacakra], are leaders of warriors and transcendent warriors”.

The story of Kālacakra was narrated by the Vidyādhara king Vajraprabha to prince Naravāhanadatta in order to relate how “Sūryaprabha, being a man, obtain of old time the sovereignty over the Vidyādharas”.

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Kālacakra, is a famous Sanskrit epic story revolving around prince Naravāhanadatta and his quest to become the emperor of the vidyādharas (celestial beings). The work is said to have been an adaptation of Guṇāḍhya’s Bṛhatkathā consisting of 100,000 verses, which in turn is part of a larger work containing 700,000 verses.

Source: Wisdom Library: Kathāsaritsāgara
Katha book cover
context information

Katha (कथा, kathā) refers to narrative Sanskrit literature often inspired from epic legendry (itihasa) and poetry (mahākāvya). Some Kathas reflect socio-political instructions for the King while others remind the reader of important historical event and exploits of the Gods, Heroes and Sages.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Katha from relevant books on Exotic India

General definition (in Hinduism)

Kalacakra in Hinduism glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

According to Sekoddeśa-tīkā, a commentary on Kāla-cakra-tantra’s Sekoddeśa, the deity Kālacakra is the same as Vajra-Sattva, the godhead of the Vajra-yāna. Kāla is here defined as immutable and unchanging and is itself the realization of this transcendental principle. Thus, the Kālacakra is the emblem of the unity of Prajñā and Upāya.

Further, it is said that all the letters and syllables of Kālacakra imply certain mystic meanings; ka is the bīja-mantra of effect Brahma (kārya Brahma). Thus Kālacakra stands for the merger of unit consciousness into the original cause-potency, which is Śūnyatā, i.e. the Pure Consciousness, the Supreme Subjectivity. Like the Vajra-yāna, Kālacakrayāna aims at the attainment of spiritual salvation, for the individual as well as the mankind. Thus, it is a cult of collective welfare like Hindu Tantra which can be summarized in one sentence: Ātma mokṣārtaṃ jagathitāyaca.

Source: Google Books: Tantra, Its Mystic and Scientific Basis

In Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Kālacakra (कालचक्र).—The principal deity Kālacakra (of the Kālacakramaṇḍala) besides having his numerous companions has three circles of deities one after another. They are called the Kāyamaṇḍala, Vāṅmaṇḍala and Cittamaṇḍala. It is in the Vāṅmaṇḍala and the Kāyamaṇḍala that Hindu deities are placed.

Source: Google Books: India antiqua (tibetan buddhism)

The Kalachakra is a term used in Vajrayana Buddhism that means wheel of time or "time-cycles". The word Kālacakra is usually used to refer to a very complex teaching and practice in Tibetan Buddhism. Although the teaching is very advanced and esoteric, there is a tradition of offering it to large public audiences.

The Kālacakra tradition revolves around the concept of time (kāla) and cycles (chakra): from the cycles of the planets, to the cycles of human breathing, it teaches the practice of working with the most subtle energies within one's body on the path to enlightenment.

The Kālacakra deity represents a buddhahood and thus omniscience. Since Kālacakra is time and everything is under the influence of time, Kālacakra knows all. Kālacakri, his spiritual consort and complement, is aware of everything that is timeless, not time-bound or out of the realm of time.

Source: WikiPedia: Tibetan Buddhism
Tibetan Buddhism book cover
context information

Tibetan Buddhism includes schools such as Nyingma, Kadampa, Kagyu and Gelug. Their primary canon of literature is divided in two broad categories: The Kangyur, which consists of Buddha’s words, and the Tengyur, which includes commentaries from various sources. Esotericism and tantra techniques (vajrayāna) are collected indepently.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Tibetan Buddhism from relevant books on Exotic India

General definition (in Buddhism)

Kalacakra in Buddhism glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kālacakra is an ideo-realistic monism. Bodhicitta is a transcendental reality but its true being remains concealed by impurities and defilements. Kālacakra is a supreme godhead. He is the supreme subjectivity and hence, he cannot be the object of thought. He stands supreme. All the deities of Buddhis tāntric pantheon are merely of the nature of Bodhicitta dependent on Kālacakra to carry out their dispositions. He alone is the source from which the cosmos is vitalized throughout the course of creation, preservation and involution.

According to Kālacakra a practitioner enters into maṇḍala (mystic diagram) after getting proper initiation (abhiṣeka) and offers worship to the Kālacakra deity. he considers himself as individual part of the deity. He identifies his body with Bīja-mantra assigning each part of his body to the corresponding Bīja-mantra, according to acoustic arrangement of mantra.

The objective of the Kālacakra Tantra is to remove the accidental defilements and with the removal of the adventitious impurities sentient being experienced buddhahood at once spontaneously. The purpose of Tāntric practice is to rid sentient being from adventitious defilements, which arise from the wrong view of existence.

Source: Google Books: Buddhist Tantra: A Philosophical Reflection and Religious Investigation

Kalachakra means Time-Wheel, as "Kāla" is Sanskrit for Time and "Chakra" (or Cakra) is Wheel in Sanskrit (In Tibetan his name is dus.'khor). It is also translated as Time-Cycles. Much in this tradition revolves around the concept of time and cycles: from the cycles of the planets, to the cycles of our breath and the practice of controlling the most subtle energies within one's body on the path to enlightenment. The Kalachakra deity represents omniscience, as everything is under the influence of time, he is time and therefore knows all. Similarly, the wheel is beginningless and endless.

Among the five main Tibetan schools, the Kalachakra practice appears most prominent in the Jonang tradition, although the practice is found in all five schools. The Jonang tradition is not well known due to historic reasons, but very significant for Kalachakra practice. They established Kalachakra as their main system for practice and have preserved a unique lineage of the Kalachakra practice. The Dalai Lamas have had specific interest in the Kalachakra practice, specifically the First, Second, Seventh, Eighth, and the current Fourteenth Dalai Lama.

In Tibet, the Kalachakra astrological system forms one of the main building blocks to compose astrological calendars. The astrology in the Kalachakra is not unlike the Western system, where for example, complicated calculations are required to determine e.g. the exact location of the planets.

Source: China Buddhism Encyclopedia: Buddhism

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Kalacakra in Jainism glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

According to Jain cosmology, Kalacakra i.e. “the wheel of time” is divided into two half rotations, Utsarpini and Avasarpini.

Utsarpini is divided into six equal parts i.e.

  1. Dushama-dushama,
  2. Dushama,
  3. Dushama-sushama,
  4. Sushama-dushama,
  5. Sushama,
  6. Sushama-sushama.

Avasarpini is also divided into six equal parts i.e.

  1. Sushama-sushama,
  2. Sushama,
  3. Sushama-dushama,
  4. Dushama-sushama,
  5. Dushama,
  6. Dushama-dushama.

Later Jain texts allocate innumerous trillions of years for Utsarpini and Avasarpini.

Source: academia.edu: The epoch of the Mahavira-nirvana

Kālacakra (कालचक्र, “cycle of time”).—One day Lord Mahāvīra’s first Gaṇdhara Indrabhūti Gautama expressed curiosity about kālacakra. The Lord said –“Time cycle” (kālacakra) has two main parts, avasarpiṇī (regressive half-cycle) and utsarpiṇī (progressive half-cycle). Consistently regressive half cycle is avasarpiṇī and consistently progressing half cycle is utsarpiṇī. Every cycle is of ten koḍākoḍī-sāgaras. Thus, one kālacakra is of 20 koḍākoḍī-sāgaras.

Source: HereNow4u: Lord Śrī Mahāvīra
General definition book cover
context information

Jainism is an Indian religion of Dharma whose doctrine revolves around harmlessness (ahimsa) towards every living being. The two major branches (Digambara and Svetambara) of Jainism stimulate self-control (or, shramana, ‘self-reliance’) and spiritual development through a path of peace for the soul to progess to the ultimate goal.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of General definition from relevant books on Exotic India

India history and geogprahy

Kalacakra or Kalachakra school of Vajrayana and Tibetan Calendar (367 CE).—Kashmiri scholar Pandita Somanatha introduced Kalachakra school of Vajrayana in Tibet around 367 CE. At the same time, an Indian Buddhist Chandranath introduced lunisolar calendar and Indian cycle of 60 years in Tibet around 367 CE. Tibet and China borrowed the 60-year cycle from India.

Source: academia.edu: The Chronological History of Tibetan Buddhism
India history book cover
context information

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.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of India history from relevant books on Exotic India

Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

Kalacakra in Marathi glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

kālacakra (कालचक्र).—n (S) The revolutions of Time and the influence attributed; the wheel of Fortune; the vicissitudes of life. v phira, badala, ulaṭa. 2 A defined revolution, a cycle. 3 A period.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

kālacakra (कालचक्र).—n The wheel of fortune. A cycle. A period.

--- OR ---

kālacakra (कालचक्र).—n The course of Fate.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
context information

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.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Marathi from relevant books on Exotic India

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Kalacakra in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kālacakra (कालचक्र).—

1) the wheel of time (time being represented as a wheel always moving).

2) a cycle.

3) (hence fig.) the wheel of fortune, the vicissitudes of life.

-kraḥ an epithet of the sun.

Derivable forms: kālacakram (कालचक्रम्).

Kālacakra is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms kāla and cakra (चक्र).

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.

Discover the meaning of kalacakra in the context of Sanskrit from relevant books on Exotic India

Relevant definitions

Search found 1389 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Kala
Kāla refers to “time-measure” (past, present, and future) and is related to the tradition of Kū...
Cakra
Cakra (चक्र, “discus”) refers to one of the several “attributes” (āyudha) or “accessories” of a...
Mahakala
Mahākāla (महाकाल) is the name of a mountain situated in Majjhimadesa (Middle Country) of ancien...
Kalakala
Kalakala (कलकल).—1) murmuring or hum of a crowd. 2) indistinct or confused noise; चलितया विदधे ...
Kalakuta
Kālakūṭa (कालकूट) is the name of a mountain, the slope of which is the home of the Vidyādhara k...
Cakravaka
Cakravāka (चक्रवाक, “cakra bird”) represents an incarnation destination of the tiryaggati (anim...
Kalasutra
Kālasūtra (कालसूत्र) refers to one of the eight great hells according to the “world of transmig...
Kalahamsa
Kalahaṃsa (कलहंस) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.60.56) and represents one of t...
Kalaratri
Kālarātri (कालरात्रि).—The Devatā presiding over the night on the eve of death. The fierce aspe...
Dharmacakra
Dharmacakra (धर्मचक्र) or Dharmacakrahasta refers to “Buddha” and represents one of the four ge...
Trikala
Trikala (त्रिकल) is the name of a deity who received the Kāmikāgama from Praṇava through the ma...
Kalamukha
Kālamukha (कालमुख).—A hybrid race born from the union of men and Rākṣasas. Sahadeva defeated th...
Ekacakra
Ekacakrā (एकचक्रा) or Ekacakrāgrāma is the name of a village in the district of Birbhum, next t...
Cakravartin
Cakravartin (चक्रवर्तिन्), translated by Tawney as “emperor,” is usually taken to mean “univers...
Candrakala
Candrakalā (चन्द्रकला).—1) a digit of the moon; राहोश्चन्द्रकलामिवाननचरीं दैवात्समासाद्य मे (rā...

Relevant text

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: