Kshatriya, aka: Ksatriya, Kṣatriya, Kṣatriyā; 21 Definition(s)


Kshatriya 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.

The Sanskrit terms Kṣatriya and Kṣatriyā can be transliterated into English as Ksatriya or Kshatriya, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Vaishnavism (Vaishava dharma)

The kṣatriyas, or the ruling class, must govern the world in accordance with the rules and regulations enacted by great brāhmaṇas and saintly persons. As soon as the ruling class becomes irresponsible in regard to the religious principles, it becomes a burden on the earth.

Source: VedaBase: Śrīmad Bhāgavatam

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—Those who are naturally very heroic and who tend to rule over others are called kṣatriyas. The divisions of brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya and śūdra are natural divisions within society. Indeed, everyone has a prescribed duty according to the varṇāśrama-dharma. Those who properly execute their prescribed duties live peacefully and are not disturbed by material conditions.

Source: Prabhupada Books: Sri Caitanya Caritamrta
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Vaishnava (वैष्णव, vaiṣṇava) or vaishnavism (vaiṣṇavism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshipping Vishnu as the supreme Lord. Similar to the Shaktism and Shaivism traditions, Vaishnavism also developed as an individual movement, famous for its exposition of the dashavatara (‘ten avatars of Vishnu’).

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Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—The Kṣatriyas should always be represented by a reddish yellow (gaura) color when painting the limbs (aṅgaracanā), according to Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 23. The painting is a component of nepathya (costumes and make-up) and is to be done in accordance with the science of āhāryābhinaya (extraneous representation).

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra

One of the Hands denoting the Four Castes.—Kṣattriya (Kṣatriya): Śikhara with the left hand moved to and fro, Patāka with the right.

Source: archive.org: The mirror of gesture (abhinaya-darpana)
Natyashastra book cover
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Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (śāstra) of performing arts, (nāṭya, e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects. It also teaches the rules for composing dramatic plays (nataka) and poetic works (kavya).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

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

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—See under Cāturvarṇya.

Source: archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय) is the name of a caste (varṇa) mentioned in the Nīlamatapurāṇa.—The Kṣatriyas They are described as skilled in the use of all sorts of weapons. As regards their status in society, their mention after the Brāhmaṇas indicates their social status in accordance with the vārtika on Pāṇini’s Aṣṭādhyāyī, II.2.34, which lays down the rule that the castes should be mentioned in the order of status, the highest one to come first and the lowest one last.

Source: archive.org: Nilamata Purana: a cultural and literary study

1a) Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—The fourth Manu.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 26. 35.

1b) Created out of the breast of Brahmā;1 the Aīndrasthānam.2 Distinctive traits;3 protection and other duties;4 definition of;5 destroyed by Kalki.6 and by Mahāpadmananda.7 seven clans distinguished; become Brahmanas by dāna, yajña and tapas.8 Their Pitṛs are Haviṣmantas; observe pollution for 12 days for father's death; pray to Devi;9 can take to Vaiśyakarma and not to Śūdrakarma.10

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 5. 108; Vāyu-purāṇa 30. 83, 232; 45. 117; 54. 111; 57. 52; 100. 246; 101. 5, 352. 104. 13; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 6. 6.
  • 2) Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 6. 34.
  • 3) Bhāgavata-purāṇa VII. 11. 14-15, 17 and 22.
  • 4) X. 24. 20; Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 8. 26-29.
  • 5) Bhāgavata-purāṇa XI. 17. 17.
  • 6) Bhāgavata-purāṇa X. 40. 22.
  • 7) Ib. XII. 1. 8.
  • 8) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 291. 55; III. 10. 89; 28. 56; 63. 141; 66. 77; 71. 231.
  • 9) Matsya-purāṇa 13. 63; 15. 17; 18. 2.
  • 10) Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 8. 39.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.60.47) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places. Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Kṣatriya) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places
Purana book cover
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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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General definition (in Hinduism)

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

Kshatriyas are the kings and warriors in the Varna system. They come next after the Brahmanas in the ranking of the castes.

Source: Apam Napat: Indian Mythology

Kshatriya (क्षत्रिय): One of the four fundamental colours (Varnas) in Hindu tradition, consisting of the warriors, soldiers and rulers of society.

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

Kshatriya (Hindi: क्षत्रिय, kṣatriya from Sanskrit: क्षत्र, kṣatra) is the title of the princely military order in the Vedic society. They are the warrior and ruling caste in the varna system. The word means the protector of land. They are supposed to uphold the code of honour, bravery and loyalty. Everyone in the military and governing hierarchy from king to village chief and from general to foot-soldier is a kshatriya. In ancient Hindu society, a person's aptitude ('guna'), conduct ('karma') and nature ('swabhava') were considered to assign his occupation. In the early Vedic civilization, the warrior caste was called Rājanya & Kshatriya. The former was an adjectival form of Rājan "ruler, king" from a root Rāj "to rule", cognate to the Latin Rex "king" and the German Reich "empire".

Source: JatLand: South Asia

A kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय) is a person with natural aptitude for protecting others, warfare, governance, politics, administration, and management.

Source: India Facts: Exploring the World of Varna

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—Third of the four orders of the varṇāśrama system. A warrior who is inclined to fight and lead others. The administrative or protective occupation according to the system of four social and spiritual orders.

Source: ISKCON Press: Glossary

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Kshatriya in Mahayana glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय) refers to “kings and great ministers” and represents one of the seven destination of rebirths in kāmadhātu, according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter XLIX.—Accordingly, “someone gives with a perfect intention and maintains morality: he is reborn in the families of the Kṣatriyas. The Kṣatriyas are the kings (rājan) and great ministers (mahāmātya)”.

Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
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Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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General definition (in Buddhism)

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

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—One of the four hereditary classes (varṇa) according to Brahmanical Hinduism (i.e., brahman, kṣatriya, vaiśya, śūdra) whose duties include maintainig order and inflicting punishment.

Source: Google Books: Divine Stories: Divyavadana

Ksatriya in Sanskrit, Khattiya in Pali. The second of the four Indian Castes at the time of Shakyamuni, they were the royal caste, the noble landlord, the warriors and the ruling castes.

Source: Buddhist Door: Glossary

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

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

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—Propagation of non-violence (ahiṃsā) by a person like a Brahmin is not effective as he lacks bravery. But when a brilliant person from the Kṣatriyas courageously gives up weapons and warfare and royal grandeur and talks of ahiṃsā, certainly it has an impact. The Brahmin’s propagation of religion is akin to the compassion of a weak shall not impact common people. This is the reason for the Jain religion – being removed from casteism – believes Tīrthaṅkara to have been born into the Kṣatriya caste. From Lord Vṛṣabhanātha to Lord Mahāvīra, all the Tīrthaṅkara born into the spotless firmament of the Kṣatriya caste, continuously spread unblemished light across the world and acquired the strength towards liberation cutting through the toughest of karmas.

Source: HereNow4u: Tīrthaṅkara (ford maker) and Kevalīs (omniscient)
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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.

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India history and geogprahy

Kṣatriya refers to the “protectors of the realm”.—The Śilāhāras called themselves Kṣatriyas. As the Yājñavalkya-smṛti has stated, the primary duty of a Kṣatriya i.e. a ruler is the protection of his subjects. The Smṛti says further that the king receives one-sixth of the religious merit of his subjects if he protects them properly. If he fails in this duty and the subjects act irreligiously, he incurs half of the sins committed by them.

Source: What is India: Inscriptions of the Śilāhāras
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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

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

kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—m (S) pop. kṣatrī m The second of the four great classes of the Hindu people, or an individual of it, a Kshatriya. 2 This word is prefixed to certain words signifying things of which there are varieties, in order to designate the variety of the second grade. As prefixed to hirā, bhāṅga, sabajī, pimpaḷa &c., it expresses A diamond of inferior lustre, bhang &c. of the second quality.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—m The second of the 4 great classes of the Hindus.

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

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

Kṣatriya (क्षत्रिय).—[kṣatre rāṣṭre sādhu tasyāpatyaṃ jātau vā ghaḥ Tv.]

1) A member of the military or second caste; धर्म्याद्धि युद्धाच्छ्रेयोऽन्यत् क्षत्रियस्य न विद्यते (dharmyāddhi yuddhācchreyo'nyat kṣatriyasya na vidyate) Bg.2.31. ब्राह्मणः क्षत्रियो वैश्यस्त्रयो वर्णा द्विजातयः (brāhmaṇaḥ kṣatriyo vaiśyastrayo varṇā dvijātayaḥ) Ms.1.4. The Mahābhārata (Śāntiparvan) says: ब्राह्मणानां क्षतत्राणात्ततः क्षत्रिय उच्यते (brāhmaṇānāṃ kṣatatrāṇāttataḥ kṣatriya ucyate) |

2) A kind of horse; क्षत्रिया वह्निसंभवाः (kṣatriyā vahnisaṃbhavāḥ) Śālihotra, Appendix II,14.

-yam The rank or power of the Kṣatriya class; Rv.4.12.3.

Derivable forms: kṣatriyaḥ (क्षत्रियः).

--- OR ---

Kṣatriyā (क्षत्रिया).—A woman of the Kṣatriya caste; Mb.1.2.318.

See also (synonyms): kṣatriyakā, kṣatriyikā.

Source: DDSA: The practical 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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Relevant definitions

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Kṣatriyastambha (क्षत्रियस्तम्भ) is a Sanskrit word referring to “the kṣatriya pillar”. Duri...
Brahma-kṣatriya.—(EI 5, 12, 24), a Kṣatriya family claiming descent from a Brāhmaṇa parent; a f...
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