Prishtha, aka: Pṛṣṭha; 8 Definition(s)


Prishtha means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India, 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.

The Sanskrit term Pṛṣṭha can be transliterated into English as Prstha or Prishtha, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ, “back”) refers to one of the nine “minor limbs” (pratyaṅga), which represents a division of Āṅgikābhinaya (gesture language of the limbs) as used within the classical tradition of Indian dance and performance, also known as Bharatanatyam.—Āṅgika-abhinaya is the gesture language of the limbs. Dance is an art that expresses itself through the medium of body, and therefore, āṅgikābhinaya is essential for any dance and especially for any classical dance of India. Pratyaṅgas or the minor limbs consist of shoulders, shoulder blades, arms, back [viz., Pṛṣṭha], thighs and calves; at times the wrists, knees and elbows are also counted among minor limbs.

Source: Shodhganga: The significance of the mūla-beras (natya)
Natyashastra book cover
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Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (śāstra) of performing arts, (nāṭya, 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 (nataka) and poetic works (kavya).

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In Buddhism

Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Prishtha in Mahayana glossary... « previous · [P] · next »

Pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ, “spine”) refers to the “back part”, from which the Buddha emitted numerous rays (raśmi) when he smiled with his whole body after contemplating the entire universe, according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter XIV).—Accordingly, having himself arranged the lion-seat, the Bhagavat sat down cross-legged; holding his body upright and fixing his attention, he entered into the samādhirājasamādhi. Then, having tranquilly come out of this samādhi and having contemplated the entire universe with his divine eye (divyacakṣus), the Bhagavat smiled with his whole body. Wheels with a thousand spokes imprinted on the soles of his feet (pādatala) shoot out six hundred prabhedakoṭi of rays. In the same way, beams of six hundred prabhedakoṭi of rays are emitted from his spine (pṛṣṭha).

After emission, the rays (raśmi) might return to the pṛṣṭha (“back part”), according to Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter XIV). According to the Avadānaśataka and Divyāvadāna, it is a custom that, at the moment when the Buddha Bhagavats show their smile, blue, yellow, red and white rays flash out of the Bhagavat’s mouth, some of which go up and some of which go down. Those that go down penetrate into the hells (naraka); those that go up penetrate to the gods from the Cāturmahārājikas up to the Akaniṣṭas. Having travelled through the trisāhasramahāsāhasralokadhātu, the rays return to the Bhagavat from behind. According as to whether the Buddha wishes to show such-and-such a thing, the rays return to him by a different part of the body.

If the rays disappear in the back (pṛṣṭha) of the Buddha, it is because he wants to reveal past actions (atītaṃ karma).

Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
Mahayana book cover
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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.

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India history and geogprahy

Pṛṣṭha.—cf. pṛṣṭhe hastaḥ (LP), ‘hand on someone's back’; a sign of warning. Note: pṛṣṭha is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary
India history book cover
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

Prishtha in Marathi glossary... « previous · [P] · next »

pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ).—n (S) The back. 2 The rear; the last; the back or hinder part. 3 A page of a book.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ).—n The back. The rear. A page of a book.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
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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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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Prishtha in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [P] · next »

Pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ).—[pṛṣ spṛś-vā thak ni°; Uṇ.2.12]

1) The back, hinder part, rear; धर्मः स्तनोऽधर्मपथोऽस्य पृष्ठः (dharmaḥ stano'dharmapatho'sya pṛṣṭhaḥ) Bhāg.2.1. 32.

2) The back of an animal; अश्वपृष्ठमारूढः (aśvapṛṣṭhamārūḍhaḥ) &c.

3) The surface or upper side; मरुपृष्ठान्युदम्भांसि (marupṛṣṭhānyudambhāṃsi) (cakāra) R.4.31;12.67; आसन्नभूपृष्ठमियाय देवः (āsannabhūpṛṣṭhamiyāya devaḥ) Ku.7.51; so अवनिपृष्ठचारिणीम् (avanipṛṣṭhacāriṇīm) U.3.

4) The back or the other side (of a letter, document &c.); लेख्यस्य पृष्ठेऽभिलिखेद्दत्त्वा दत्त्वर्णिको धनम् (lekhyasya pṛṣṭhe'bhilikheddattvā dattvarṇiko dhanam) Y.2.93.

5) The flat roof of a house.

6) The page of a book. (pṛṣṭhena, pṛṣṭhe 'behind, from behind').

7) Remainder (śeṣa); 'पृष्ठं चरममात्रे स्यात् (pṛṣṭhaṃ caramamātre syāt)' इति विश्वः (iti viśvaḥ); एष भारतयुद्धस्य पृष्ठं संशयमिष्यति (eṣa bhāratayuddhasya pṛṣṭhaṃ saṃśayamiṣyati) Mb.5.167.11.

Derivable forms: pṛṣṭham (पृष्ठम्).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Pṛṣṭha (पृष्ठ) or Pṛṣṭhi.—(pṛṣṭhi-, pṛṣṭha-, pṛṣṭhī-) ; mss. sometimes pṛṣṭi-) -kaṇṭaka, often spelled °kaṇṭhaka (see this) in mss. of Mv, m. or nt. (= Pali piṭṭhi-kaṇṭaka; also piṭṭhī-?), backbone: LV 254.13 evaṃ me pṛṣṭhīkaṇṭako 'bhūd; 20 pṛṣṭhikaṇṭakam evāsprākṣam; 256.1 pṛṣṭhīkaṇṭakaḥ; Mv ii.125.16 pṛṣṭhakaṇṭakāni; 127.5 pṛṣṭhikaṇṭakāsthikāni; 128.10 pṛṣṭhikaṇṭakāni; 129.12 evam eva me pṛṣṭha- kaṇṭakaṃ (mss., Senart em. °kā) abhūnsuḥ (all passages are prose); pṛṣṭhikaṇṭakam Mv ii.127.10; 128.15; 129.17, see prec. and next.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary
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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.

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