Mahakaya, aka: Maha-kaya, Mahākaya, Mahākāya, Mahākāyā; 11 Definition(s)

Introduction

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

Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Mahakaya in Purana glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahākāya (महाकाय).—One of the twelve rākṣasas facing the twelve ādityas in the battle of the gods (devas) between the demons (asuras), according to the Varāhapurāṇa chapter 94. This battle was initiated by Mahiṣāsura in order to win over the hand of Vaiṣṇavī, the form of Trikalā having a red body representing the energy of Viṣṇu. Trikalā is the name of a Goddess born from the combined looks of Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Maheśvara (Śiva).

The Varāhapurāṇa is categorised as a Mahāpurāṇa, and was originally composed of 24,000 metrical verses, possibly originating from before the 10th century. It is composed of two parts and Sūta is the main narrator.

Source: Wisdom Library: Varāha-purāṇa

Mahākāyā (महाकाया).—A woman follower of Lord Subrahmaṇya (Mahābhārata Śalya Parva, Chapter 46, Verse, 24).

Source: archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia

Mahākāya (महाकाय).—A son of Bhaṇḍa.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 26. 47.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
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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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Mahākāya (महाकाय) is a Sanskrit name referring to one of the eight manifestations of Ruru, who is a form of Bhairava. According to the Rudrayāmala, there are eight main forms of Bhairava who control the eight directions of this universe. Each form (eg., Ruru) has a further eight sub-manifestations (eg., Mahākāya), thus resulting in a total of 64 Bhairavas.

When depicting Mahākāya according to traditional iconographic rules (śilpaśāstra), one should depcit him (and other forms of Ruru) having a pure white color, adorned with ornaments set with rubies; he should carry an akṣamālā, the aṅkuśa, a pustaka and a vīṇā. The word Śilpaśāstra refers to an ancient Hindu science of arts and crafts, dealing with subjects such as painting, sculpture and iconography.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śilpa-śāstra
Shilpashastra book cover
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Shilpashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, śilpaśāstra) represents the ancient Indian science (shastra) of creative arts (shilpa) such as sculpture, iconography and painting. Closely related to Vastushastra (architecture), they often share the same literature.

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In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Mahakaya in Jainism glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahākaya (महाकय) refers to a class of mahoraga deities gods according to the Śvetāmbara tradition, while the Digambara does not recognize this class. The mahoraga refer to a category of vyantaras gods which represents one of the four classes of celestial beings (devas). The mahoragas are are dark or black in complexion and the Nāga is their caitya-vṛkṣa (sacred-tree).

The deities such as the Mahākayas are defined in ancient Jain cosmological texts such as the Saṃgrahaṇīratna in the Śvetāmbara tradition or the Tiloyapaṇṇati by Yativṛṣabha (5th century) in the Digambara tradition.

Source: Wisdom Library: Jainism

Mahākāya (महाकाय) refers to one of the two Indras (lords) of the Mahoraga class of “peripatetic celestial beings” (vyantara), itself a main division of devas (celestial beings) according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 4.6. Atikāya and Mahākāya are the two lords in the class ‘great serpent’ peripatetic celestial beings.

Source: Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra 4: The celestial beings (deva)
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

Pali-English dictionary

Mahakaya in Pali glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

mahākāya : (adj.) having a fat or big body.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise 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.

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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mahakaya in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mahākāya (महाकाय).—a. big-bodied, big, gigantic, bulky. (-yaḥ) 1 an elephant.

2) an epithet of Śiva.

3) of Viṣṇu.

4) of a being attending on Śiva (= nandi).

Mahākāya is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms mahā and kāya (काय).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mahākāya (महाकाय).—n. of a garuḍa prince: SP 5.5.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary

Mahākāya (महाकाय).—mfn.

(-yaḥ-yā-yaṃ) Large, bulky, stout. m.

(-yaḥ) 1. A name of Nandi, the door-keeper and attendant of Siva. 2. An elephant. E. mahā large and kāya body.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara 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.

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Relevant definitions

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