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Manvantara, aka: Manu-antara; 2 Definition(s)

Introduction

Manvantara means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. Check out some of the following descriptions and leave a comment if you want to add your own contribution to this article.

In Hinduism

Purāṇa

Manvantara (मन्वन्तर).—Periods of Manus; seven in number and seven to come, of Svāyambhuva, Svārociṣa, Auttama, Tāmasa, Raivata, Cākṣuṣa, Sāvarṇi (after Vaivasvata in Matsya-purāṇa), raucya (br. p.); Vaivasvata present according to the Matsya-purāṇa) Ruci, Bhautya, Merusāvarṇi, Rta, Ṛtadhāmān and Viṣvaksena; the last seven are future Manus;1 one of the five characteristics of the Purāṇa;2 calculation of the duration of the epochs of Manus;3 constitutes 71 yugas at the end of which comes Kṣaya4 according to Mānuṣa and Divyavatsara.5 manvantara of svāyambhuva manu—the Gods of three worlds, sages, pitṛs, and people help him; but finding the diminished powers, go to Maharloka.6

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 6. 6, 20; 36. 1-4; Matsya-purāṇa 2. 22; 9. 2-36; Vāyu-purāṇa 21. 11, 14, 19, 38, 44; 57. 33-6; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 3. 18.
  • 2) Matsya-purāṇa 53. 65; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa I. 1. 37; Vāyu-purāṇa 4. 10.
  • 3) Matsya-purāṇa 142. 30.
  • 4) Vāyu-purāṇa 10. 12; 32. 41.
  • 5) Ib. 61. 138-144; 150. 176.
  • 6) Vāyu-purāṇa 61. 149-51.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

about this context:

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.

General definition (in Hinduism)

1) Manvantara is the period of astronomical time within an aeon or Kalpa, (a day of Brahma).

2) Manvantara, the Hindu progenitor of mankind, is an astronomical period of time measurement. The word is a combination of words 'manu' and 'antara', creating manu-antara or manvantara, and literally meaning "the duration of a Manu", or his life span.

Each Manvantara is created and ruled by a specific Manu, who in turn is created by Brahma, the Creator himself. Manu creates the world, and all its species during that period of time, each Manvantara lasts the lifetime of a Manu, upon whose death, Brahma creates another Manu to continue the cycle of Creation or Shristi, Vishnu on his part takes a new Avatar, and also a new Indra and Saptarishis are appointed.

Eventually it takes 14 Manus and their respective Manvantaras to create a Kalpa, Aeon, or a ‘Day of Brahma’, according to the Hindu Time Cycles and also the Vedic timeline. Thereafter, at the end of each Kalpa, there is a period - same as Kalpa - of dissolution or Pralaya, wherein the world (earth and all life forms, but not the entire universe itself) is destroyed and lies in a state of rest, which is called the, ‘Night of Brahma’.

After that the creator, Brahma starts his cycle of creation all over again, in an endless cycle of creation followed by Destruction for which Shiva, Hindu God of destruction, and also renewal, is invoked towards the end of each such cycle.

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

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