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Parvati, aka: Pārvatī; 10 Definition(s)


Parvati 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

Kathā (narrative stories)

Pārvatī (पार्वती) is the beloved of Maheśvara, who is mentioned as the “chief of things animate and inanimate”. Their dwelling place is the mountain-peak Kailāsa, located within Himavat, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 1. Accordingly, “There (Kailāsa) dwells Maheśvara the beloved of Pārvatī, the chief of things animate and inanimate, attended upon by Gaṇas, Vidyādharas and Siddhas. In the upstanding yellow tufts of his matted hair the new moon enjoys the delight of touching the eastern mountain yellow in the evening twilight.”

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’) is a famous Sanskrit epic story revolving around prince Naravāhanadatta’s quest to become the emperor of the Vidhyādharas. The work is said to have been an adaptation of Guṇāḍhya’s Bṛhatkathā consisting of 100,000 verses, which in turn is part of a larger work containing 700,000 verses.

Source: Wisdom Library: Kathāsaritsāgara

about this context:

Kathās (कथा) are special kind of Sanskrit literature: they are a kind of a mix between Itihāsa (historical legends) and Mahākāvya (epic poetry). Some Kathās reflect socio-political instructions for the King while others remind the reader of the historical deeds of the Gods, sages and heroes.

Vāstuśāstra (architecture)

Pārvatī (पार्वती).—Sculptures of Pārvatī, called by different names locally, are available in good numbers. These are all cult objects enshrined in the Amman shrines of the different Śiva temples of the region (southern India). They are all sculptures, carved in the round, with or with out a prabhāvali. They are carved either in sthānaka or in the āsīna postures. The standing sculptures are all in samabhaṅga or tribhaṅga postures. They are always four handed holding in their upper hands pāśa and aṅkuśa and the lower hands are disposed in abhaya and varada mudras. The decorations are all conventional and traditional.

Source: Shodhganga: Temples of Salem region Up to 1336 AD

about this context:

Vāstuśāstra (वास्तुशास्त्र, vastu-shastra) refers to the knowledge of architecture. It is a branch of ancient Indian science dealing with topics such architecture, construction, sculpture and their relation with the cosmic universe.


1a) Pārvatī (पार्वती).—Umā, wife of Śiva, attained half body of Śiva by virtue of the 108 names of the Devī;1 (Ambā), the family deity of the Vidarbhas; present when Śiva gave his missile to Arjuna;2 conceived true love even as a girl;3 went with Śiva to have a look at the Mohinī form of Viṣṇu;4 once when she was sitting unclad on the lap of Śiva there came some sages to see the Lord; ashamed she got herself clothed; to please her Śiva said that any male who entered that place thereafter would become a female;5 presented Pṛthu with a sword Śatacandra;6 prayed to by Rukminī to get Kṛṣṇa for her husband; to her shrine Rukminī went by foot and offered worship for the hand of Kṛṣṇa;7 Vṛka's aim to take her after killing Śiva;8 prevented the enraged Śiva from killing Bhṛgu;9 saw Mārkaṇḍeya engaged in tapas.10 A Śakti;11 felt for Vināyaka losing his teeth through Paraśurāma and appealed to Śiva who remembered Kṛṣṇa. The latter came with Rādhā and consoled her by addressing on Gaṇeśa's greatness.

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 12. 9; 13. 51 and 60; 85. 6; 183. 14; 187. 44; Vāyu-purāṇa 54. 20; 108. 51; 112. 35; Viṣṇu-purāṇa V. 32. 11-15.
  • 2) Bhāgavata-purāṇa I. 15. 12; X. 52. 42.
  • 3) Ib. X. 60. 47.
  • 4) Ib. VIII. 12. 2 and 25.
  • 5) Ib. IX. 1. 29-32.
  • 6) Ib. IV. 15. 17; VI. 17. 11-12.
  • 7) Ib. X. 53. 25, 39-40 and 44-49.
  • 8) Ib. X. 88. 23.
  • 9) Ib. X. 89. 7.
  • 10) Ib. XII. 10. 3 and 35.
  • 11) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 25. 23; III. 41. 38, 50; 42. 7, 17; 44. 28; IV. 6. 8, 30, 38; 10. 41, 42.

1b) A name of the R. Nandā.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 49. 92.

1c) (alias vijayā); wife of Sahādeva and mother of Suhotra.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa IX. 22. 31.
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.

Śāktism (Śākta philosophy)

Pārvatī (पार्वती, “Daughter of the Mountain”).—One of the names of the Goddess, Devī, who is regarded as the female principle of the divine; the embodiement of the energies of the Gods.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śāktism

about this context:

Śākta (शाक्त, shakta) or Śāktism (shaktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devī) is revered and worshipped. Śāka literature includes a range of scriptures, including various tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

Nāṭyaśāstra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

One of the Deva-vibhāvana (hands that indicate the forms which accord with the character and actions of Brahmā and other Devas).—Pārvatī: Ardha-candra with both hands, the left upward, the right downward, making Abhaya and Varada (Fear not, and Charity).

Source: archive.org: The mirror of gesture (abhinaya-darpana)

about this context:

Nāṭyaśāstra (नाट्यशास्त्र, natya-shastra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition of performing arts, (e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects. It also teaches the rules for composing dramatic plays (nāṭya) and poetic works (kāvya).

Śilpaśāstra (iconography)

Pārvatī (पार्वती) is a gentle benevolent goddess, daughter of the axial mountain — the Himalaya, from which the earth energy radiates into space. The mountain (parvata) or Himavat (“the snow-capped-one”) is a symbol of ether — Ākāśa.

The peaks of the mountains are regarded as the places from which the earth energy flows into the ether. No dwellings are built on top of mountains and hills and only places of worship may be built there.

The mother of Pārvatī is Menakā, who represents intellect (buddhi). Born of Ether and Intellect, Pārvatī is the omnipresent conscious substance of the universe. Pārvatī is also the matron of all the elemental spirits — the bhūtas and gaṇas (‘categories’) that wander about the earth.

Source: Red Zambala: Hindu Icons and Symbols | Devi

about this context:

Śilpaśāstra (शिल्पशास्त्र, shilpa-shastra) represents the ancient Indian science of creative arts such as sculpture, iconography and painting. Closely related to Vāstuśāstra (architecture), they often share the same literature.

General definition (in Hinduism)

According to the Bhaviṣya Purāṇa (3.14.22ff.), when the gods approached Śiva requesting him to marry Pārvatī in order to beget a son equal to the task of slaying Tāraka, Śiva protested his inability to comply on account of his chastity vow, and on account of the Goddess being the universal mother. For the sake of the gods, however, he was willing to devolve his vīrya to Agni, which would do the needful on his behalf.

Source: Academia.edu: Tejas Transactions in the Itihāsa-Purāṇa

Pārvatī, the constant consort of Lord Śiva, who is referred to in the  dhyāna of Mṛtyuṅjaya as the daughter of Himāvat, the Himalayan king-god.

Source: Sanjay Rath: Maha Mrtyunjaya Mantra

Parvati (पार्वती, Pārvatī) is another form of Shakti, the wife of Shiva and the gentle aspect of Maha Devi or Durga, the Great Goddess. Parvati is considered to be a complete incarnation of Adi Parashakti or Goddess Durga, with all other Goddesses being her incarnations or manifestations.

Parvati, when depicted alongside Shiva, generally appears with two arms, but when alone, she is depicted having four, eight or ten arms, and is astride on a tiger or lion.

Parvata is one of the Sanskrit words for "mountain"; "Parvati" translates to "She of the mountains" and refers to Parvati being born the daughter of Himavan, lord of the mountains and the personification of the Himalayas.

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

Parvati is the wife of Shiva. She is also known as Ambika or Shakti. In her aspect as Parvati she is a benevolent goddess, granting the boons of her worshippers. However, in her aspect as Kali, she is a fierce goddess, the destroyer of her foes and has a terrible visage.

The Devi Bhagavata is the collection of stories involving her, and details many of her incarnations. She is also said to possess overlordship of the Navagrahas (nine planets).

Source: Apam Napat: Indian Mythology

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