Mahakalpa, Mahākalpa, Maha-kalpa: 13 definitions


Mahakalpa means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit, 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

Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Shaktism glossary
Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प) refers to the “five great cosmic ages”, according to the Tantric texts such as the Kubjikāmata-tantra, the earliest popular and most authoritative Tantra of the Kubjikā cult.

Shaktism book cover
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Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Hinduism glossary
Source: A History of Indian Philosophy

A Mahākalpa (महाकल्प) is equal to 300,000 saras and one sara is the time required to exhaust the sands of the seven Ganges (each Ganges being 500 yojanas or 2250 miles in length, 2¼ miles in breadth, and 50 dhanus or 100 yards in depth), at the rate of putting 100 years for the removal of one grain of sand.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Mahayana glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प) refers to a “great cosmic period”, according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter XLVI.—Accordingly, “the Mahākalpa, or great cosmic period, is divided into four incalculable periods (asaṃkhyeyakalpa) each lasting twenty small kalpas (antarakalpa): 1) one period of disappearance of the world (saṃvarta-kalpa) resulting from one disappearance by fire, one disappearance by water and one disappearance by wind; 2) one period during which the world remains destroyed (saṃvartasthāyika-kalpa); 3) one period of creation (vivartaka-kalpa); 4) one period during which the world remains created (vivartasthāyi-kakalpa)”.


Mahayana book cover
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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)

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Buddhism glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प) refers to a “great aeon” and represents one of the “four aeons” (kalpa) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 87). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (e.g., mahā-kalpa). The work is attributed to Nagarjuna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Source: WikiPedia: Buddhism

Maha-Kalpa - largest time unit in Buddhism. Ending of a Maha-Kalpa (apocalypse) can happen in three ways: fire, water and wind. It is divided into four quarters each equivalent to one Asankya-Kalpa.

  1. First quarter - time taken for this world to form.
  2. Second quarter - stable duration of this world where all living beings can thrive.
  3. Third quarter - time taken for this world to be destroyed.
  4. Fourth quarter - empty time period.

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Jainism glossary
Source: Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प) refers to one of the fourteen limbs of the external-corpus (aṅga-bāhya). The Aṅgabāhya refers to one of the two types of scriptural knowledge (śruta), which refers to one of the five types of knowledge (jñāna). according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 1.20, “scriptural knowledge (śruta) preceded by sensory knowledge (mati) is of two, or of twelve or of many kinds (e.g., mahākalpa)”.

General definition book cover
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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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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Marathi glossary
Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

mahākalpa (महाकल्प).—m (S) A great or complete kalpa, the whole period of the life of Brahma (100 years, for the amount of which in the years of shortlived man, please to make calculation upon kalpa q. v.)

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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 dictionary

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Sanskrit glossary
Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प).—a great cycle of time (1 years of Brahman); Bhāgavata 7.15.69.

Derivable forms: mahākalpaḥ (महाकल्पः).

Mahākalpa is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms mahā and kalpa (कल्प).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Cappeller Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Mahākalpa (महाकल्प).—[masculine] great cycle of time.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

1) Mahākalpa (महाकल्प):—[=mahā-kalpa] [from mahā > mah] m. a great cycle of time, [Mahābhārata; Purāṇa; Buddhist literature]

2) [v.s. ...] Name of Śiva, [Mahābhārata] (= divya-bhūṣaṇa [Scholiast or Commentator])

[Sanskrit to German]

Mahakalpa in German

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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 (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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Kannada-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Mahakalpa in Kannada glossary
Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Mahākalpa (ಮಹಾಕಲ್ಪ):—

1) [noun] a great cycle of time.

2) [noun] Śiva.

3) [noun] (Dvaita phil.) the great period of time during which the universe is created.

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Kannada is a Dravidian language (as opposed to the Indo-European language family) mainly spoken in the southwestern region of India.

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