Mahapataka, Mahāpātaka, Maha-pataka: 13 definitions


Mahapataka means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, 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

Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Mahapataka in Purana glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Mahāpātaka (महापातक).—The murder of a Brahmana, taking of liquor, theft and intercourse with preceptor's wife, for all of which death is the punishment; the Brahmana culprits were however, banished with different signs marked on their faces.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 227. 161-165.
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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Pancaratra (worship of Nārāyaṇa)

Source: eScholarship: Chapters 1-14 of the Hayasirsa Pancaratra

Mahāpātaka (महापातक) or Mahāpātakacihnita refers to “one who is marked by great sin”, representing an undesirable characteristic of an Ācārya, according to the 9th-century Hayaśīrṣa-pañcarātra Ādikāṇḍa chapter 3.—The Lord said:—“I will tell you about the Sthāpakas endowed with perverse qualities. He should not construct a temple with those who are avoided in this Tantra. [...] He with whom one constructs a temple should not be a Śaiva, or a Saura, nor a Naiṣṭhika, nor a naked one, nor born of mixed marriage, nor unclean, old, or one who is of a despicable form or marked by great sin (mahāpātaka-cihnita). [...] A god enshrined by any of these named above (viz., mahāpātaka), is in no manner a giver of fruit. If a building for Viṣṇu is made anywhere by these excluded types (viz., mahāpātaka) then that temple will not give rise to enjoyment and liberation and will yield no reward, of this there is no doubt”.

Note: the term Mahāpāta refers to a person who has commited one of the five cardinal sins. See ‘mahāpātakam’ in Apte (p. 1251), Manu-mṛti 11.54, which gives the following: “they call Bramicide, drinking liquor, stealing, and bedding the Guru’s wife great sins. These four and a combination of them makes five”.

Pancaratra book cover
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Pancaratra (पाञ्चरात्र, pāñcarātra) represents a tradition of Hinduism where Narayana is revered and worshipped. Closeley related to Vaishnavism, the Pancaratra literature includes various Agamas and tantras incorporating many Vaishnava philosophies.

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Dharmashastra (religious law)

Source: Google Books: Manusmṛti with the Manubhāṣya

Mahāpātaka (महापातक) refers to “five great sins”, as mentioned in the commentary of Manusmṛti verse 11.54.—According to Vaśiṣṭha (1.19-21).—“they state that there are five Mahāpātakas: stealing gold, the violation of Guru’s bed, drinking Surā, slaying a learned Brāhmaṇa, and associating with outcasts, either spiritually or matrimonially”. According to Yājñavalkya (3.227).—“Brāhmaṇa-slayer, wine-drinker, stealer (of gold), violators of Guru’s bed; these are the Mahāpātakins, as also one who associates with these for one year”.

Source: Shodhganga: The saurapurana - a critical study (dharma)

Mahāpātaka (महापातक) refers to “great sins” according to the Dharmaśāstra taught in the 10th century Saurapurāṇa: one of the various Upapurāṇas depicting Śaivism.—Accordingly, [...] chapter fifty-two of Saurapurāṇa describes that sins (pātaka) are of two types—expressed or concealed. In the Purāṇas most of the expiations are mentioned in connection with the great sins (mahāpātaka) which are five in number viz. the killing of a Brāhmaṇa, drinking wine, theft, violating the bed of the preceptor and association with a person that has committed any of the sins mentioned above.

Dharmashastra book cover
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Dharmashastra (धर्मशास्त्र, dharmaśāstra) contains the instructions (shastra) regarding religious conduct of livelihood (dharma), ceremonies, jurisprudence (study of law) and more. It is categorized as smriti, an important and authoritative selection of books dealing with the Hindu lifestyle.

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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

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

mahāpātaka (महापातक).—n (S) A crime of the highest degree. Five such are enumerated,--killing a Brahman, stealing gold, drinking spirits, adultery with the wife of a spiritual teacher, or incest with one's mother, associating with a person who has committed any of the four (brahmahatyā, surāpāna, suvarṇa- stēya, gurūtalpagamana, tatsaṃsarga). 2 Great crime in general.

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

mahāpātaka (महापातक).—n A crime of the highest degree.

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.

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Sanskrit dictionary

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

Mahāpātaka (महापातक).—

1) a great sin, a heinous crime; ब्रह्महत्या सुरापानं स्तेयं गुर्वङ्गनागमः । महान्ति पातकान्याहुस्तत्संसर्गश्च पञ्चमम् (brahmahatyā surāpānaṃ steyaṃ gurvaṅganāgamaḥ | mahānti pātakānyāhustatsaṃsargaśca pañcamam) || Manusmṛti 1154.

2) any great sin or transgression.

Derivable forms: mahāpātakam (महापातकम्).

Mahāpātaka is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms mahā and pātaka (पातक).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Mahāpātaka (महापातक).—n.

(-kaṃ) 1. A crime of the highest degree, as killing a Brahmana, stealing gold from a priest, drinking spirits, adultery with the wife of a spiritual teacher, and associating with persons who have committed these offences. 2. Great crime in general. E. mahā great, pātaka offence: see pañcamahāpātaka .

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

Mahāpātaka (महापातक).—[neuter] great crime; poss. kin.

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

1) Mahāpātaka (महापातक):—[=mahā-pātaka] [from mahā > mah] n. a great crime or sin (5 such are enumerated, viz. killing a Brāhman, drinking intoxicating liquors, theft, committing adultery with the wife of a religious teacher, and associating with any one guilty of these crimes), [Manu-smṛti ([especially] xi, 54); Yājñavalkya] etc.

2) [v.s. ...] any gr° crime or heinous sin, [Horace H. Wilson]

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

Mahāpātaka (महापातक):—[mahā-pātaka] (kaṃ) 1. n. Crime of the worst kind, killing a brāhman.

[Sanskrit to German]

Mahapataka 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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