Shanmasa, Ṣaṇmāsa, Shash-masa: 13 definitions


Shanmasa 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.

The Sanskrit term Ṣaṇmāsa can be transliterated into English as Sanmasa or Shanmasa, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Jyotisha (astronomy and astrology)

Source: Wisdom Library: Brihat Samhita by Varahamihira

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to a “period of six months”, according to the Bṛhatsaṃhitā (chapter 5), an encyclopedic Sanskrit work written by Varāhamihira mainly focusing on the science of ancient Indian astronomy astronomy (Jyotiṣa).—Accordingly, “[...] Commencing from the time of creation, Brahmā is the lord over the new and full moon periods of the first six months [i.e., ṣaṇmāsa]; the Moon is the lord over those of the second six months; Indra over those of the third six months; Kubera over those of the fourth six months; Varuṇa over those of the fifth six months; Agni over those of the sixth six months and Yama over those of the seventh six months; and so on the cycle being repeated over and over again”.

Jyotisha book cover
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Jyotisha (ज्योतिष, jyotiṣa or jyotish) refers to ‘astronomy’ or “Vedic astrology” and represents the fifth of the six Vedangas (additional sciences to be studied along with the Vedas). Jyotisha concerns itself with the study and prediction of the movements of celestial bodies, in order to calculate the auspicious time for rituals and ceremonies.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to a period of “six months”, according to the Manthānabhairavatantra, a vast sprawling work that belongs to a corpus of Tantric texts concerned with the worship of the goddess Kubjikā.—Accordingly, “The teacher in the western house is one who belongs to the sequence of the line (of teachers). [...] He should offer bali at a crossroads, (at the foot of) a solitary tree or a cremation ground or at the gathering of the Mothers. He does this once he has placed the sacrificial food (there) and eaten a little of it in front of the Krama. Within six months [i.e., ṣaṇmāsa] (he attains) success, and in eight (he becomes) pure. Satisfied, (the Yoginīs) give (him) whatever he desires. Success is to be found in the sacred seats, primary and secondary, or in the meeting grounds and in the gathering of (initiates) of the Rule as well as in the eight houses (of the Mothers) for one who is fearless and not otherwise. [...]”.

Shaktism book cover
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Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

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Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Source: Brill: Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to “six months” (observance of the raudravrata), according to the Kiraṇatantra chapter 49 (dealing with vratacaryā).—Accordingly, “Garuḍa spoke: ‘You have taught me, O great Lord, the activities of the Neophyte, the Putraka and the Ācārya. Tell me those of the Sādhaka’. The Lord spoke: ‘[...] This is the auspicious Raudra-vrata: imposing with a chignon of matted locks, marked by a trident and khaṭvāṅga, equipped with a clean half skull, awe-inspiring with a third eye, clothed in the skin of a tiger, peaceful. For one firm [in this observance, the highest siddhi will arise in six months] (ṣaṇmāsaṣaḍbhirmmāsaiḥ); middling [powers] in four months; the lowest [powers] will arise in three months. [...]’”.

Source: SOAS University of London: Protective Rites in the Netra Tantra

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to “six months” (of meditation), according to the Svacchanda-tantra.—Accordingly, [verse 7.207]—“[The Yogin] dwells there [in breath]. He should impel all [creation], [and is] situated among all beings. After [he has] meditated upon [haṃsa], he conquers death. The powerful Lord does not create that which is not situated in kāla. For one engaged in meditation, after six months (ṣaṇmāsa), omniscience arises. The knower of yoga is yoked with kāla. He recognizes three times [the past, present, and future]”.

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.

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Yoga (school of philosophy)

[«previous next»] — Shanmasa in Yoga glossary
Source: ORA: Amanaska (king of all yogas): A Critical Edition and Annotated Translation by Jason Birch

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to “six months (of practicing breath exercises)”, according to the Yogayājñavalkya, an ancient Sanskrit text from the 8th century dealing with the eight components of Yoga in over 500 verses.—Accordingly, [while describing a practice of breathing]: “Having drawn the breath in through the tongue [whose edges are curled up to form a tube], the man who constantly drinks [the breath this way] does not [suffer from] fatigue or [excessive] heat [in the body] and all [minor] diseases are cured. Having drawn in the breath at the junctures of the day or an hour before sunrise, he who drinks it [thus] for three months, good lady, [gains] eloquent speech and within six months (ṣaṇmāsa) of practice, he is freed from all serious diseases”.

Yoga book cover
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Yoga is originally considered a branch of Hindu philosophy (astika), but both ancient and modern Yoga combine the physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga teaches various physical techniques also known as āsanas (postures), used for various purposes (eg., meditation, contemplation, relaxation).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Shanmasa in Purana glossary
Source: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास) refers to “six months”, according to the Śivapurāṇa 2.4.1 (“The dalliance of Śiva”).—Accordingly, as Lord Viṣṇu said to Brahmā: “[...] If any one separates the copulated pair by a tricky expedient, he will have the pangs of separation from his wife and sons in every birth. He will fall from perfect wisdom. [...] Bṛhaspati hindered Kāma in copulation with Ghṛtācī but within six months (ṣaṇmāsa) the moon abducted his wife. He then propitiated Śiva, fought a battle over Tārā, enjoyed her even as she was pregnant and tried to dispel his pangs of separation. [...]”.

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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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास).—m (S) A period of six months.

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

ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास).—m A period of six months.

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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 dictionary

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास).—m.

(-saḥ) A half year, six months. E. ṣaṣ, and māsa a month.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Cappeller Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास).—[substantive], [feminine] six-months.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास):—[=ṣaṇ-māsa] [from ṣaṇ > ṣaṣ] m. a period of six months, half a year (sāt ind. after six months), [Varāha-mihira’s Bṛhat-saṃhitā; Rājataraṅgiṇī]

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Yates Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Ṣaṇmāsa (षण्मास):—[ṣa-ṇmāsa] (saḥ) 1. m. Six months.

[Sanskrit to German]

Shanmasa in German

context information

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