Pralaya, aka: Pralayā; 6 Definition(s)


Pralaya means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, 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

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Pralayā (प्रलया):—Fourth of the eight Mātṛs born from the body of Ātmī, according to the Kubjikāmata-tantra. These eight sub-manifestations (mātṛ), including Pralayā, symbolize the different kinds of souls, as well as the impurities by which these souls are bound (except for Niṣkala or Śiva). They are presided over by the Bhairava Caṇḍa and his consort Brāhmī. Ātmī is the second of the Eight Mahāmātṛs, residing within the Mātṛcakra (third of the five cakras) and represents the ātman.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Kubjikāmata-tantra
Shaivism book cover
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Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.

Nāṭyaśāstra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Pralaya (प्रलय, “fainting”).—One of the eight ‘involutary states’ (sāttvikabhāva), according to the Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 7. These ‘involutary states’ are different from consequents (anubhāva) because of their arising from the inner nature (sattva). The term is used throughout nāṭyaśāstra literature. (Also see the Daśarūpa 4.6-7)

(Source): Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra

Pralaya (प्रलय, “fainting”) occurs due to too much toil, swoon, intoxication, sleep, injury, astonishment and the like. Loss of Consciousness should be represented by inaction, motionlessness, imperceptible breathing and [finally] by falling on the ground.

(Source): Natya Shastra
Nāṭyaśāstra book cover
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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).


Pralaya (प्रलय).—The deluge: destruction; after Manvantaras;1 two kinds—one at the end of a Kalpa or the day of Brahmā and the other at the end of the life of Brahmā.2

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 2. 22; 142. 36.
  • 2) Viṣṇu-purāṇa VI. 1. 3.
(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.

Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

pralaya (प्रलय).—m (S) The general destruction at the close of a kalpa or period of 432,000,000 years. 2 Death, dissolution, loss, annihilation; destruction gen. 3 Applied figuratively to any extensive havoc or devastation; or, more laxly, to express vehemence, excessiveness, wildness, and tumultuousness gen. Ex. pāvasānēṃ pra0 māṇḍalā; jarīmarīnēṃ pra0 kēlā; hōḷakarānēṃ dēśāvara mōṭhā pra0 kēlā; laḍhā- īcā-julumācā-undirāñcā-pōpaṭāñcā-pra0. Also extravagance (of action) or exuberance (of things); as khēḷaṇyācā-gāṇyācā-śikaṇyācā-lihiṇyācā-pikācā- dhānyācā pra0. The word agrees well with anartha Sig. II. 3 Syncope or swooning. See aṣṭabhāva.

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praḷaya (प्रळय).—Poetical and popular forms of pralaya &c.

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

pralaya (प्रलय).—m The general destruction. Death. Devastation.

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praḷaya (प्रळय).—&c., Poetical and popular forms of pralaya &c.

(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.

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