Prajna, aka: Prajñā, Prajña; 7 Definition(s)


Prajna means something in Buddhism, Pali, 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


1a) Prajña (प्रज्ञ).—An Amitābha god.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 36. 53.

1b) (ety): all the senses came out of Īśvara.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 4. 37.
(Source): Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
Purana book cover
context information

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.

In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Prajñā (प्रज्ञा, “wisdom”) refers to one of ten constituents (dravya) of the thirty-seven auxiliaries to enlightenment (bodhipākṣika), according to the Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra chapter XXXI.—Accordingly, “these thirty-seven auxiliaries (bodhipākṣika) have ten things (dravya) as roots (mūla). Wisdom (prajñā) constitutes: a. the four foundations of mindfulness (smṛtyupasthāna); b. the faculty of wisdom (prajñendriya); c. the power of wisdom (prajñābala); d. the factor-of-enlightenment called discernment of dharmas (dharmapravicaya-saṃbodhyaṅga); e. the [factor-of-the-path] called right view (samyagdṛṣṭi)”.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
Mahayana book cover
context information

Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

General definition (in Buddhism)

1) Prajñā (प्रज्ञा, “wisdom”) or prajñāpāramitā represents the last of the “six perferctions” (ṣaṭpāramitā) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 17). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., ṣaṣ-pāramitā and prajñā). The work is attributed to Nagarjuna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Prajñā forms, besides a part of the “six perferctions” (ṣaṭpāramitā), also a part of the “ten perfections” (daśa-pāramitā) and the “five super-mundane components” (lokottara-skandha).

Prajñā also refers to one of the “five faculties” (pañcendriya) as well as one of the “five strengths” (pañcabala) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 47-48), both forming part of the “thirty-seven things on the side of awakening” (bodhipākṣika-dharma).

Prajñā or Prajñācakṣus refers to one the “five eyes” (cakṣus) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 65).

2) Prajñā (ध्यान, “wisdom”) also refers to the “three kinds of wisdom” as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 110):

  1. śruta-mayī (by way of learning),
  2. cintā-mayī (by way of thinking),
  3. bhāvanā-mayī (by way of meditation).
(Source): Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Prajñā (प्रज्ञा, “knowledge”) refers to one of the hardships (parīṣaha), or “series of trials hard to endure” according to the Triṣaṣṭiśalākāpuruṣacaritra 10.1 (Incarnation as Nandana). While practicing penance for a lac of years, Muni Nandana also endured a series of trials hard to endure (eg., prajñā). Nandana is the name of a king as well as one of Mahāvīra’s previous births.

(Source): Trisastisalakapurusacaritra Vol-i
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

prajñā (प्रज्ञा).—f S Understanding. 2 Genius, sharpness of intellect.

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prājña (प्राज्ञ).—a S Wise, sensible, sagacious, very intelligent or knowing.

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prājñā (प्राज्ञा).—f S Great intelligence or acute understanding; profound knowledge or sagacity. 2 Used freely, as prāpti and the words grouped under kimata, in the general sense of Competency or capacity for or unto. Neg. con. as sabhēmadhyēṃ majaśīṃ bhāṇḍāyālā kāya tujhī prājñā?

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

prajñā (प्रज्ञा).—f Understanding. Genius.

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prājña (प्राज्ञ).—a Wise, sensible, sagacious.

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prājñā (प्राज्ञा).—f Great intelligence, profound knowledge. Competency.

(Source): DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
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.

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Prajñā (प्रज्ञा).—9 U.

1) To know, know about, be acquainted with.

2) To be aware of, find out.

3) To discern, distinguish. -Caus. (prajñapayati)

1) To show, point out (as way).

2) To discover.

3) To call, summon, invite.

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Prajña (प्रज्ञ).—a.

1) Wise, intelligent, learned.

2) (At the end of comp.) conversant with.

-jñaḥ A wise or learned man.

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Prajñā (प्रज्ञा).—

1) Intelligence, understanding, intellect, wisdom; आकारसदृशप्रज्ञः प्रज्ञया सदृशागमः (ākārasadṛśaprajñaḥ prajñayā sadṛśāgamaḥ) R.1.15; नाभिनन्दति न द्वेष्टि तस्य प्रज्ञा प्रतिष्ठिता (nābhinandati na dveṣṭi tasya prajñā pratiṣṭhitā) Bg.2.57; शस्त्रं निहन्ति पुरुषस्य शरीरमेकं प्रज्ञा कुलं च विभवं यशश्च हन्ति (śastraṃ nihanti puruṣasya śarīramekaṃ prajñā kulaṃ ca vibhavaṃ yaśaśca hanti) || Subhāṣ.

2) Discernment, discrimination, judgment; इयं निष्ठा बहुविधा प्रज्ञया त्वध्यवस्यति (iyaṃ niṣṭhā bahuvidhā prajñayā tvadhyavasyati) Mb.14.3.24.

3) Device or design.

4) A wise or learned woman.

5) Longing for (vāsanā); impression (saṃskāra); तं विद्याकर्मणि समन्वारभेते पूर्वप्रज्ञा च (taṃ vidyākarmaṇi samanvārabhete pūrvaprajñā ca) Bṛ. Up.4.4.2.

6) Name of the goddess Sarasvatī.

7) A particular Śakti or energy.

8) A true or transcendental wisdom; Buddh.

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Prājña (प्राज्ञ).—a. (-jñā, -jñī f.) [प्रज्ञ एव स्वार्थे अण् (prajña eva svārthe aṇ)]

1) Intellectual.

2) Wise, learned, clever; किमुच्यते प्राज्ञः खलु कुमारः (kimucyate prājñaḥ khalu kumāraḥ) U.4.

-jñaḥ 1 A wise or learned man; तेभ्यः प्राज्ञा न बिभ्यति (tebhyaḥ prājñā na bibhyati) Ve.2.14; देवद्विजगुरुप्राज्ञपूजनं शौचमार्जवम् ब्रह्मचर्यमहिंसा च शारीरं तप उच्यते (devadvijaguruprājñapūjanaṃ śaucamārjavam brahmacaryamahiṃsā ca śārīraṃ tapa ucyate) || Bg.17.14.

2) A kind of parrot.

3) Intelligence dependent on individuality; Vedāntasāra.

4) Supreme Being (Almighty); अयं पुरुषः प्राज्ञेनात्मना संपरिष्वक्तो न बाह्यं किंचन वेद नान्तरम् (ayaṃ puruṣaḥ prājñenātmanā saṃpariṣvakto na bāhyaṃ kiṃcana veda nāntaram) Bṛ. Up.4.3.21.

-jñā 1 Intelligence, understanding.

2) A clever or intelligent woman.

-jñī 1 A clever or learned woman.

2) The wife of a learned man.

3) Name of a wife of the sun (sūryapatnī).

(Source): DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. 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.

Relevant definitions

Search found 138 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Prajñāpāramitā (प्रज्ञापारमिता).—one of the transcendent virtues; Buddh. Prajñāpāramitā is a Sa...
Prajñācakṣus (प्रज्ञाचक्षुस्).—a. blind; (lit. having understanding as the only eyes); ततो ज्ञा...
Prajñendriya (प्रज्ञेन्द्रिय) refers to the “faculty of wisdom” and represents one of the five ...
Śrutamayīprajñā (श्रुतमयीप्रज्ञा) or simply Śrutamayī refers to “[wisdom gained] by way of lear...
Cintāmayīprajñā (चिन्तामयीप्रज्ञा) or simply Cintāmayī refers to “[wisdom gained] by way of thi...
Bhāvanāmayīprajñā (भावनामयीप्रज्ञा) or simply Bhāvanāmayī refers to “[wisdom gained] by way of ...
Pūrṇaprajña (पूर्णप्रज्ञ).—a. one whose prajñā is fully developed. Pūrṇaprajña is a Sanskrit co...
Prajñābala (प्रज्ञाबल) or simply Prajñā refers to the “strength of wisdom” and represents one o...
Prājñamanya (प्राज्ञमन्य).—or [prājñammānin] a. fancying oneself to be wise, conceited; न तु चि...
Antaḥprajña (अन्तःप्रज्ञ).—a. knowing oneself, with an enlightened soul. Antaḥprajña is a Sansk...
Mandaprajña (मन्दप्रज्ञ).—a. dull-witted, silly, foolish. Mandaprajña is a Sanskrit compound co...
Dīrghaprajña (दीर्घप्रज्ञ).—A Kṣatriya King. He traces his ancestry from a part of the Asura, V...
Vipulaprajñā (विपुलप्रज्ञा).—a. endowed with great talents or understanding. Vipulaprajñā is a ...
Prājñamānin (प्राज्ञमानिन्).—or [prājñammānin] a. fancying oneself to be wise, conceited; न तु ...
Nikṛtiprajña (निकृतिप्रज्ञ).—a. evil minded, wicked.Nikṛtiprajña is a Sanskrit compound consist...

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