Sunanda, aka: Su-nanda, Sunandā; 13 Definition(s)


Sunanda means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit. 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

Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Sunandā (सुनन्दा, “pleasing, delighting ”):—Name of one of the goddesses to be worshipped during Āvaraṇapūjā (“Worship of the Circuit of Goddesses”), according to the Durgāpūjātattva (“The truth concerning Durgā’s ritual”). They should be worshipped with either the five upācāras or perfume and flowers.

Her mantra is as follows:

ह्रीं ओं सुनन्दायै नमः
hrīṃ oṃ sunandāyai namaḥ

Source: Wisdom Library: Śāktism
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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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Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Sunandā (सुनन्दा) is the name of an Apsara created for the sake of a type of dramatic perfomance. Acording to the Nāṭyaśāstra 1.46-51, after Brahmā asked Bharata for materials necessary for the Graceful Style (kaiśikī: a type of performance, or prayoga), Bharata answered “This Style cannot be practised properly by men except with the help of women”. Therefore, Brahmā created with his mind several apsaras (celestial nymphs), such as Sunandā, who were skillful in embellishing the drama.

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra
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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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Sunanda in Purana glossary... « previous · [S] · next »

Śunandā (शुनन्दा) is the name of a mind-born ‘divine mother’ (mātṛ), created for the purpose of drinking the blood of the Andhaka demons, according to the Matsya-purāṇa 179.8. The Andhaka demons spawned out of every drop of blood spilled from the original Andhakāsura (Andhaka-demon). According to the Matsya-purāṇa 179.35, “Most terrible they (eg., Śunandā) all drank the blood of those Andhakas and become exceedingly satiated.”

The Matsyapurāṇa is categorised as a Mahāpurāṇa, and was originally composed of 20,000 metrical verses, dating from the 1st-millennium BCE. The narrator is Matsya, one of the ten major avatars of Viṣṇu.

Source: Wisdom Library: The Matsya-purāṇa

1) Sunanda (सुनन्द).—A Gopa. (See under Ugratapas).

2) Sunanda (सुनन्द).—Son of King Pradyota. The epic story in Bhaviṣya Purāṇa closes with the story of Sunanda. The Maharṣis, who lived in Naimiṣa forest feared that following the death of Sunanda, the world would become absolutely mean and base, and all of them, therefore, went to the Himālayas and there, at Viśālanagara recited the Viṣṇu Purāṇa. (Bhaviṣya Purāṇa, Pratisarga Saṃhitā).

3) Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—A princess of Kekaya She was married by Sārvabhauma, a King of the Kuru dynasty. The son Jayatsena was born to this couple. (Mahābhārata Ādi Parva, Chapter 95, Verse 16).

4) Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—Daughter of Sarvasena the King of Kāśī, Bharata, the son of Duṣyanta, married this Sunandā. It is mentioned in Mahābhārata, Ādi Parva, Chapter 95, Verse 32, that a son named Bhumanyu, was born to the couple.

5) Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—A princess of Śibi kingdom. She was married by King Pratīpa of the lunar dynasty and the couple had three sons called Devāpi, Śāntanu and Bālhīka. (Mahābhārata Ādi Parva, Chapter 95, Verse 44).

6) Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—Sister of Subāhu, King of Cedi. It was her whom the queen of Cedi appointed as companion of Damayantī, who lost her way and arrived at Cedi. She detected Damayantī conversing with the brahmin named Subāhu, who came to Cedi in search of the latter and reported about their meeting to the queen mother. The name of the father of Sunandā and Subāhu was Vīrabāhu. (Mahābhārata Vana Parva, Chapters 63, 68 and 69).

Source: Puranic Encyclopaedia

1a) Sunanda (सुनन्द).—A chief attendant on Viṣṇu;1 a celibate and devoted to Hari. Praised Dhruva and followed Hari going to Pṛthu's sacrifice.2 Attacked Asura followers of Bali.3

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa I. 14. 32; II. 9. 14; VII. 8. 39; VIII. 20. 32; 22. 15; X. 39. 53; 89. 57.
  • 2) Ib. IV. 9. 30; 12. 22; 19. 5.
  • 3) VIII. 21. 16.

1b) A disciple of Brahmā.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 22. 16.

2a) Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—R., on its bank Manu (Svāyambhuva) practised tapas renouncing the world.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa VIII. 1. 8.

2b) A daughter of Sāraṇā.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 71. 168; Vāyu-purāṇa 96. 166.

2c) A mind-born mother.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 179. 12.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Sunandā (सुनन्दा) refers to the name of a Lady mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.90.16). Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Sunandā) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places
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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General definition (in Hinduism)

Sunanda (सुनन्द).—One of the chief personal servants of Lord Nārāyaṇa in His spiritual abode, Vaikuṇṭha.

Source: ISKCON Press: Glossary

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

1. Sunanda. Father of Padumuttara Buddha. DhA.i.417; but J.i.37 and Bu.xi.19 call him Ananda.

He became an ascetic and the Buddha preached to him. In this life he was Punna Mantaniputta. ThagA.i.361f.

2. Sunanda Khattiya. Father of Kondanna Buddha. J.i.30; Bu.iii.25.

3. Sunanda. A village, where Yasodhara gave a meal of milk rice to Kondanna Buddha. BuA.108.

4. Sunanda. An Ajivaka who gave grass for his seat to Kondanna Buddha. BuA.108.

5. Sunanda. An Ajivaka who gave grass for his seat to Sujata Buddha. BuA.168.

6. Sunanda. An Ajivaka who gave grass for his seat to Dipankara Buddha. BuA.68.

7. Sunanda. The park where Anomadassi Buddha was born. BuA.141.

8. Sunanda. A disciple of Dhammadassi Buddha. Ap.i.196.

9. Sunanda. A palace of Vipassi Buddha, in his last lay life. Bu.xx.24.

10. Sunanda. A brahmin in the time of Padumuttara Buddha; a former birth of Nita (Pupphachadaniya) Thera. ThagA.i.181; Ap.i.166.

11. Sunanda. A brahmin, who gave an umbrella to Sariputta. Ap.i.266.

12. Sunanda. Son of King Anjasa. Once, while riding the elephant Sirika, he saw the Pacceka Buddha Devala, and drove the elephant against him. He was a previous birth of Upali. ThagA.i.367f.

13. Sunanda. A king of thirty seven kappas ago, a previous birth of Akkanta Sannaka. Ap.i.212.

14. Sunanda. A charioteer of the king of Kasi, in the Mugapakkha Jataka ( He is identified with Sariputta.

15. Sunanda. A charioteer of King Sivi in the Ummadanti Jataka. He is identified with Ananda. J.v.227.

16. Sunanda. A king of Surabhi in the time of Mangala Buddha; the Buddha preached to him. Bu.iv.6; BuA.119f.

17. Sunanda. A city. See Naradeva (2).

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
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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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In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

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Sunandā (सुनन्दा) is the wife of Kṣemaṅkara, who is a kulakara (law-giver) according to Digambara sources. The kulakaras (similair to the manus of the Brahmanical tradition) figure as important characters protecting and guiding humanity towards prosperity during ancient times of distress, whenever the kalpavṛkṣa (wishing tree) failed to provide the proper service.

These law-givers and their wifes (eg., Sunandā) are listed in various Jain sources, such as the Bhagavatīsūtra and Jambūdvīpaprajñapti in Śvetāmbara, or the Tiloyapaṇṇatti and Ādipurāṇa in the Digambara tradition.

Source: Wisdom Library: Jainism

Sunandā (सुनन्दा) is the mother of Śītalanātha: the tenth of twenty-four Tīrthaṃkaras or Jinas, commonly depicted in Jaina iconography.—Śītalanātha was born of a Kṣatriya family of Malaya Kingdom. His birth-place is named Bhadrikapura or Bhadillapura (Madrapura according to one version). His parent’s names were king Dṛḍharatha and Queen Sunandā respectively. His chowri-bearer was called Rājā Sīmandhara.

Source: The Jaina Iconography
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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.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Sunanda (सुनन्द).—Name of Balarāma's club; प्रतिजग्राह बलवान् सुनन्देनाहनच्च तम् (pratijagrāha balavān sunandenāhanacca tam) Bhāg.1.67.18.

Derivable forms: sunandam (सुनन्दम्).

Sunanda is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms su and nanda (नन्द).

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Sunanda (सुनन्द).—a kind of royal palace.

Derivable forms: sunandaḥ (सुनन्दः).

Sunanda is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms su and nanda (नन्द).

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Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—

1) Name of a woman.

2) Name of Pārvatī; L. D. B.

3) yellow pigment; L. D. B.

Sunandā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms su and nandā (नन्दा).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Sunanda (सुनन्द).—(1) n. of a devaputra: LV 4.12; 6.12; 438.16; Mv ii.257.7; (2) n. of a cakravartin: Mv i.250.17; (3) n. of a nāga: Māy 222.2.

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Sunandā (सुनन्दा).—n. of a yakṣiṇī: Sādh 562.4.

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

Sunanda (सुनन्द).—mfn.

(-ndaḥ-ndā-ndaṃ) Pleasing, delighting. n.

(-ndaṃ) The club of Balarama. f.

(-ndā) 1. The goddess Uma. 2. A sort of pigment and drug: see gorocanā. 3. A woman. 4. One of Uma'S female companions. 5. A plant, (Aristolochia Indica.) E. su well, thoroughly, nadi to please, aff. ac .

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