Kapalasphota, Kapālasphoṭa: 4 definitions

Introduction:

Kapalasphota means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. 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

Kavya (poetry)

[«previous next»] — Kapalasphota in Kavya glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Kathāsaritsāgara

Kapālasphoṭa (कपालस्फोट) is a title (epithet) of Vijayadatta (son of Govindasvāmin) obtained after transforming into a Rākṣasa, as mentioned in the story of Aśokadatta and Vijayadatta, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 25. Accordingly, as Kapālasphoṭa (Vijayadataa) spoke to Aśokadatta: “I am Vijayadatta, your younger brother; we are both the sons of that excellent Brāhman Govindasvāmin. And by the appointment of destiny I became a Rākṣasa such as you see, and have continued such for this long time; and I am called Kapālasphoṭa from my cleaving the skull on the funeral pyre. But now from seeing you I have remembered my former Brāhman nature, and that Rākṣasa nature of mine, that clouded my mind with delusion, has left me”.

The story of Kapālasphoṭa (Vijayadatta) and Govindasvāmin was narrated to Śaktideva by Viṣṇudatta in order to demonstrate that “divine persons become incarnate for some reason, and are born in this world of men, and possessing their native virtue and courage, attain successes which it is hard to win”.

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Kapālasphoṭa, 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.

context information

Kavya (काव्य, kavya) refers to Sanskrit poetry, a popular ancient Indian tradition of literature. There have been many Sanskrit poets over the ages, hailing from ancient India and beyond. This topic includes mahakavya, or ‘epic poetry’ and natya, or ‘dramatic poetry’.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Kapalasphota in Sanskrit glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Kapālasphoṭa (कपालस्फोट):—[=kapāla-sphoṭa] [from kapāla] m. ‘splitting the skull’, Name of a Rakṣas, [Kathāsaritsāgara]

[Sanskrit to German]

Kapalasphota in German

context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). 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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