Mahat; 5 Definition(s)

Introduction

Mahat means something in 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

Āyurveda (science of life)

Mahat (महत्) is a Sanskrit technical term translating to “strong” or “thick”, and is used throughout Āyurvedic literature such as the Suśrutasaṃhitā or the Carakasaṃhitā.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany
Āyurveda book cover
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

Purāṇa

1a) Mahat (महत्).—A tatva or principle;1 identified with Brahmā;2 a name of Rudra;3 absorbs the ahaṅkāra4 covered by Pradhāna.5 Ten times greater than bhūtādi; the order of evolution of the universe according to Sānkhya;6 evolution of Prakṛti in its vikāras.7

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa I. 3. 1; II. 1. 35; Matsya-purāṇa 3. 17.
  • 2) Bhāgavata-purāṇa III. 6. 26; XI. 14. 14; 16. 37-8; 24. 25-26; 28. 16.
  • 3) Ib. III. 12. 12.
  • 4) Ib. XII. 4. 17.
  • 5) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 21. 27; 32. 76; IV. 3. 6 and 21.
  • 6) Matsya-purāṇa 123. 52-61.
  • 7) Ib. 3. 17-26; Vāyu-purāṇa 100. 243.

1b) (a Rudra), son of Bhūta and Sarūpā.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa VI. 6. 18.
(Source): Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
Purāṇa book cover
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The Purāṇas (पुराण, purana) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahāpurāṇas total over 400,000 ślokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Mahat (महत्) refers to “observing long fasts” and represents one of the seven types of extraordinary powers of austerity (tapas), which itself is a subclass of the eight ṛddhis (extraordinary powers). These powers can be obtained by the Ārya (civilized people) in order to produce worldly miracles. The Āryas represent one of the two classes of human beings according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 3.46, the other being Mleccha (barbarians).

What is meant by observing long fasts (mahat-riddhi) extraordinary power? It is the extraordinary power to observe 108 sequential fasts without any obstacles.

(Source): Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra 3: The Lower and middle worlds
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.

Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

mahat (महत्).—a (S This is the neuter termination; mahān & mahatī are the masculine and feminine terminations.) Great, big, large. 2 Great figuratively, having any quality in a high degree; as mahābuddhi- mān, mahālabāḍa, mahāsōdā &c. In composition mahā is generally substituted, ā being inserted in place of t; as mahādēva, mahāpūjā, mahādāna. When, in composition it retains its form mahat, it then qualifies, not the noun with which it is compounded, but the object or subject to which the compound points; as mahatapūjā (Not great worship but) Worship rendered to or by a great person; mahata- kula (Not a great family but) The family of a great man; mahatasēvā Service rendered to or by a great personage; mahadvacana The promise or saying of a great, worthy, or true person. 3 Very, exceeding; as mahāpracaṇḍa, mahātīkṣṇa.

(Source): DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

mahat (महत्).—a Great, big, large. It becomes in compound mahā, as mahāpūjā, mahāsōdā. When it does not change (as in mahatpūjā or mahatsēvā) it denotes the object or sub- ject to which the compound refers.

(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.

Relevant definitions

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ahaṅkāra (अहंकार).—m Pride; conscious feeling; conceit; assertion of personality.
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