Shambara, aka: Sambara, Śambara, Saṃbara; 12 Definition(s)

Introduction

Shambara means something in Buddhism, Pali, 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.

The Sanskrit term Śambara can be transliterated into English as Sambara or Shambara, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

[Shambara in Natyashastra glossaries]

Śambara (शम्बर) is the Sanskrit name of one of Bharata’s sons, mentioned in the Nāṭyaśāstra 1.26-33. After Brahmā created the Nāṭyaveda (nāṭyaśāstra), he ordered Bharata to teach the science to his (one hundred) sons. Bharata thus learned the Nāṭyaveda from Brahmā, and then made his sons study and learn its proper application. After their study, Bharata assigned his sons (eg., Śambara) various roles suitable to them.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra
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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Ayurveda (science of life)

[Shambara in Ayurveda glossaries]

Śambara (शम्बर) is a Sanskrit word referring to a kind of deer with branched horns (“Indian sambar”). The meat of this animal is part of the māṃsavarga (‘group of flesh’), which is used throughout Āyurvedic literature. The animal Śambara is part of the sub-group named Jāṅgalamṛga, refering to “animals living in forests”. It was classified by Caraka in his Carakasaṃhitā sūtrasthāna (chapter 27), a classical Āyurvedic work. Caraka defined such groups (vargas) based on the dietic properties of the substance.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany

Śambara (शम्बर) is the name of a tree (Śambara) that is associated with the Nakṣatra (celestial star) named Jyeṣṭhā, according to the second chapter (dharaṇyādi-varga) of the 13th-century Raj Nighantu or Rājanighaṇṭu (an Ayurvedic encyclopedia). Accordingly, “these [trees] are propounded in Śāstras, the secret scriptures (śāstrāgama). These pious trees [viz, Śambara], if grown and protected, promote long life”. These twenty-seven trees related to the twenty-seven Nakṣatras are supposed to be Deva-vṛkṣas or Nakṣatra-vṛkṣas.

(Source): Wisdom Library: Raj Nighantu
Ayurveda book cover
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

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Purana

[Shambara in Purana glossaries]

1) Śambara (शम्बर).—An asura. General. Various Purāṇas refer to this leader of the asuras as having played a prominent part in the devāsura war. After many such wars he was killed by Śiva. Śambara’s magic power. He possessed marvellous magic powers. Once while fighting with him, the Devas were non-plussed by his magical powers, and they hid themselves in a forest. Śambara was pleased and he roamed about freely without any fear and burnt the palaces of the protectors of the world. The Devas left their homes and disappeared in disguise. The Devas began killing those whom Śambara had appointed as army-chieftains. To counter this attack by the Devas, he created three powerful asuras by his powers of magic. The three asuras called Dama, Vyāla and Ghaṭa began killing the warriors of the Devas, and the Devas told Brahmā at Satyaloka about the depredations of the asura. Brahmā encouraged them for further fighting, and the three asuras were killed and Śambara ran away and hid himself. (Jñānavāsiṣṭha Sthitiprakaraṇam). Śambara in Ṛgveda. There are various references to Śambara in the Ṛgveda. He was King of the Dasyus. He had mastery over hundred cities. The forts and trenches in those cities were very strong. The forts are referred to as Aśvamayī, Āyasī, Śatabhujī etc. in the Ṛgveda. The chief enemies of the Aryans were the race of people called Paṇis in the city. There is a hint about the killing of Śambara in Sūkta 17, Anuvāka 8, Maṇḍala 1 of the Ṛgveda. Other information.

(i) Śambara was Kaśyapaprajāpati’s son by his wife Danu.

(ii) Daśaratha had, at the request of the Devas defeated Śambara in a war fought in Devaloka. (See under Daśaratha, Para 5).

(iii) Indra, on another occasion, defeated Śambara. (Ādi Parva, Chapter 137, Verse 43). (See full article at Story of Śambara from the Puranic encyclopaedia by Vettam Mani)

2) Śambara (शम्बर).—An asura.

2) He was the son of Hiraṇyākṣa and brother of Śakuni, Dvimūrdhā, Śaṅku and Ārya. (Agni Purāṇa, Chapter 17). Śambara, who was a great adept in magic, was killed in the company of his wife Māyāvatī, by Pradyumna, the son of Śrī Kṛṣṇa. (See under Pradyumna).

(Source): archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia

1a) Śambara (शम्बर).—A son of Danu, and a follower of Vṛtra in his battle with Indra.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa VI. 6. 30; 10. 19 [3]; Matsya-purāṇa 6. 17; 249. 67; Vāyu-purāṇa 68. 11; 98. 81; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 19. 14; 21. 4.

1b) A son of Hiraṇyākṣa;1 a Dānava king; taken to Pātāla with Bali by Vāmana;2 guiles of, towards Prahlāda at the instance of Hiraṇyakaśipu.3

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa VII. 2. 4 and 18; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 5. 30.
  • 2) Ib. III. 6. 4 and 11; IV. 29. 123; 73. 81.
  • 3) Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 15. 153; 16. 9.

1c) A resident of Tripura; participated in the Devāsura war between Bali and Indra; fought with Tvaṣṭri.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa VIII. 6. 31; 10. 19 and 29.

1d) A companion of Kaṃsa; walked away with child Pradyumna within ten days [six days (Viṣṇu-purāṇa)] of its birth. He knew that the bady was his enemy but he threw it into the sea and went away. Māyāvatī, the superintendent of his kitchen discovered a child in a fish brought to the kitchen, and hearing from Nārada that it was Kāma reborn, and that she herself was Ratī, she brought up the child and when he came of age, she told him the truth and asked him to fight Śambara with the aid of mahāmāyā vidyā. His head was cut off by Pradyumna.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa X. 36. 36; 55. 3. 24; II. 7. 34; III. 3. 11; Viṣṇu-purāṇa V. 26. 12; Ch. 27 (whole).

1e) (Śabara, Bhāgavata-purāṇa); his greed for more territory.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa XII. 3. 11.
(Source): Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
Purana book cover
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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.

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Katha (narrative stories)

[Shambara in Katha glossaries]

Śambara (शम्बर) is the name of an Asura who was reborn as Prahasta: minister of Sūryaprabha, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 45. Accordingly, as Kaśyapa said to Maya, Sunītha and Sūryaprabha: “... and the other Asuras, who were your companions, have been born as his friends; for instance, the great Asura named Śambara has been born as his minister Prahasta”.

The story of Śambara was narrated by the Vidyādhara king Vajraprabha to prince Naravāhanadatta in order to relate how “Sūryaprabha, being a man, obtain of old time the sovereignty over the Vidyādharas”.

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Śambara, is a famous Sanskrit epic story revolving around prince Naravāhanadatta and his quest to become the emperor of the vidyādharas (celestial beings). 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
Katha book cover
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Katha (कथा, kathā) refers to narrative Sanskrit literature often inspired from epic legendry (itihasa) and poetry (mahākāvya). Some Kathas reflect socio-political instructions for the King while others remind the reader of important historical event and exploits of the Gods, Heroes and Sages.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

[Shambara in Hinduism glossaries]

Sambara is a character in Hindu mythology, married to Māyāvati. He abducted the infant Pradyumna, son of Krishna and Rukmini, but Pradyumna escaped, and after eventually growing up, killed Sambara and married his wife. He was also a demon in the Vedas whose 99 fortresses were destroyed by Indra in the ecstasy of Soma while giving aid to Divodasa Atithigva. Indra finished off the demon in the hundredth.

(Source): WikiPedia: Hinduism

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

[Shambara in Theravada glossaries]

A chief of the Asuras. In the Isayo Samuddaka Sutta (S.i.227) (q.v.) we are told that, because Sambara refused the request of the sages for a guarantee of safety, they cursed him, and his mind was deranged. Buddhaghosa adds (SA.i.266) that, on account of this mental derangement, he came to be called Vepacitti (s.v.). Elsewhere (S.i.239), however, it is said that once Sakka asked Vepacitti to teach him Sambaras magic art (Sambarimaya). Vepacitti consulted the Asuras and then warned Sakka against learning it because, through his art, Sambara had fallen into purgatory, where he had been suffering for a century. Buddhaghosa, in this context (SA.i.272), calls Sambara an Asurinda, a juggler (mayavi) who, having practised his maya, has roasted for the past century in purgatory.

Mrs. Rhys Davis (KS.i.306 n) thinks there was a rank of Sambara resembling that of Sakka, and that each succeeding Sambara learnt the magic art. See also Samvara.

(Source): Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
context information

Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

[Shambara in Marathi glossaries]

śambara (शंबर).—m S A sort of Elk, Cervus elaphas. The popular word is sāmbara.

--- OR ---

sāmbara (सांबर).—m n (śambara S) A sort of Elk, Cervus Elaphas, C. Hippelaphas, or C. Aristotelis.

--- OR ---

sāmbāra (सांबार).—& sāmbārēṃ See sāmbhāra & sāmbhārēṃ.

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

śāmbara (शांबर).—n Magic, sorcery. śāmbarī f A female juggler.

--- OR ---

sāmbara (सांबर).—m n A sort of elk.

(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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Sanskrit-English dictionary

[Shambara in Sanskrit glossaries]

Śambara (शम्बर).—a. [śamb arac] Best, excellent.

-rāḥ 1 Name of a demon slain by Pradyumna, q. v.

2) A mountain.

3) A kind of deer.

4) A Jina.

5) Name of the trees चित्रक, लोध्र (citraka, lodhra) and अर्जुन (arjuna).

6) A kind of fish.

7) War.

-ram 1 Water; किं विलम्बसे (kiṃ vilambase) ... शम्बरानयने (śambarānayane) Cholachampū p. 26.

2) A cloud.

3) Wealth.

4) A rite or religious observance.

--- OR ---

Śāmbara (शाम्बर).—A kind of sandal.

Derivable forms: śāmbaram (शाम्बरम्).

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Saṃbara (संबर).—1 A dam, bridge.

2) A kind of deer.

3) Name of a demon slain by Pradyumna; see शंबर (śaṃbara) and प्रद्युम्न (pradyumna).

4) Name of a mountain.

-ram 1 Restraint.

2) Water.

3) A kind of religious observance (with the Buddists).

Derivable forms: saṃbaraḥ (संबरः).

--- OR ---

Sāmbara (साम्बर).—Salt produced in Sambara.

Derivable forms: sāmbaram (साम्बरम्).

(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.

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Relevant definitions

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