Marudevi, Marudevī: 2 definitions



Marudevi means something in Jainism, Prakrit. 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 Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Source: Wisdom Library: Jainism

Marudevī (मरुदेवी) is the wife of Nābhi, who is a kulakara (law-giver) according to Śvetāmbara sources, while Digambara names him Nābhirāja. The kulakaras (similair to the manus of the Brahmanical tradition) figure as important characters protecting and guiding humanity towards prosperity during ancient times of distress, whenever the kalpavṛkṣa (wishing tree) failed to provide the proper service.

These law-givers and their wifes (e.g., Marudevī) are listed in various Jain sources, such as the Bhagavatīsūtra and Jambūdvīpaprajñapti in Śvetāmbara, or the Tiloyapaṇṇatti and Ādipurāṇa in the Digambara tradition.

Source: Trisastisalakapurusacaritra

Marudevī (मरुदेवी) or Marudevā is the daughter of Marudeva and Śrīkāntā, according to chapter 1.2 [ādīśvara-caritra] of Hemacandra’s 11th century Triṣaṣṭiśalākāpuruṣacaritra (“lives of the 63 illustrious persons”): a Sanskrit epic poem narrating the history and legends of sixty-three important persons in Jainism.


“[...] finally, twins were born from Śrīkāntā [by Marudeva], boy and girl, named Nābhi and Marudevī. Five hundred and twenty-five bows tall, together they grew up like forgiveness and self-control. Marudevā, with the beauty of the priyaṅgu, and Nābhi, having the color of pure gold, looked like images of their parents from the identity of color. The life of these two noble persons was measured by numbered pūrvas and was somewhat less than Śrīkāntā’s and Marudeva’s. After death Marudeva attained the status of a Dvīpakumāra and Śrīkāntā that of a Nāgakumāra. After that Nābhi became the seventh patriarch of the twins, and ruled them properly by these three laws [i.e., Hākāra, Mākāra and Dhikkā].

[...] the soul of Śrī Vajranābha, after completing a span of life to the extent of thirty-three sāgaropamas, fell from Sarvārthasiddhi and descended into the womb of Marudevī, the wife of Śrī Nābhi, as a haṃsa would descend from Lake Mānasa to the bank of the Mandākinī. At the time when the Master descended, for a moment there was happiness for all creatures in the three worlds from the destruction of pain, and also a great light. Then Marudevī, asleep in her bed-chamber, saw fourteen great dreams on the night of the avatar [...]”.

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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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