Svaha, Svāhā, Svāha: 11 definitions


Svaha means something in 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.

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In Hinduism

Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Śāktism

Svāhā (स्वाहा):—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 स्वाहायै नमः
hrīṃ oṃ svāhāyai namaḥ

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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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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Source: Wisdom Library: Elements of Hindu Iconograpy

Svāhā (स्वाहा):—The consort of Paśupati (aspect of Śiva, as in, one of the eight names of Rudra) according to the Pādma-purāṇa. (according to the Viṣṇu-purāṇa she is called Vikesī)

Shilpashastra book cover
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Shilpashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, śilpaśāstra) represents the ancient Indian science (shastra) of creative arts (shilpa) such as sculpture, iconography and painting. Closely related to Vastushastra (architecture), they often share the same literature.

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Source: Wisdom Library: The Matsya-purāṇa

Svāhā (स्वाहा) 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., Svāhā) 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: Puranic Encyclopedia

Svāhā (स्वाहा).—A daughter of Bṛhaspati. This Svāhā who was always angry had a son named Kāma. (Mahābhārata Vana Parva, Chapter 219, Verse 22).

Source: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Svāhā (स्वाहा) is one of the twenty-four daughters of Dakṣa by Prasūti: one of the three daughters of Svāyambhuvamanu and Śatarūpā, according to the Śivapurāṇa 2.1.16:—“Dakṣa begot twenty-four daughters. The eleven younger daughters were [... Svāhā,...]. The great aspirants [Vahni] and others took the hands of these famous daughters (eg., Svāhā married the fire-god/Vahni). Thereupon the entire universe consisting of three worlds, mobile and immobile was filled (with progeny). Thus according to their own actions and at the bidding of Śiva innumerable famous Brahmins were born out of the various living beings”.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1) Svāha (स्वाह).—A son of Vṛjinīvān.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 44. 16.

2a) Svāhā (स्वाहा).—A daughter of Dakṣa and the mother of Pāvaka, Pavamāna and Śucī through Paśupati-Agni; from these three have sprung up forty-five agnis. All of them form a group of 49 agnis.1 Mode of offering in invoking devas while svadhā for invoking Pitṛs.2

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa IV. 1. 60-61; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa I. 1. 62; II. 9. 52, 56; 10. 81. 12. 3; Vāyu-purāṇa 1. 76; 10. 28, 32; 27. 53; 29. 1; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 7. 25, 27; 8. 8; 10. 14-15.
  • 2) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 3. 25; 11. 18 and 116.

2b) A god of one of the ten branches of the Harita gaṇa.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 1. 85; Vāyu-purāṇa 100. 89.

2c) The goddess enshrined at Māheśvarapura.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 13. 42.

2d) A mind-born mother.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 179. 20.

2e) For karmas associated with Devas and yajñas like svadhā for Pitṛs.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 75. 77.
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)

Source: Wisdom Library: Hinduism

Svāhā (स्वाहा, “invocation-at-offering”):—She is the wife of Agni, one of the most important Vedic gods representing divine illumination. Together they have three sons:

  1. Pāvaka,
  2. Pāvamāna
  3. and Śuci.
Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

1) In Hinduism and Buddhism, svāhā is an interjection, approximately "hail!" in mantras indicating the end of the mantra. In the Tibetan language, "svaha" is translated as "so be it" and is often pronounced and orthographically represented as "soha". Whenever fire sacrifices are made, svāhā is chanted. Etymologically, the term is probably from su "well" and the root ah "to call".

etymology: svāhā (Romanized Sanskrit transcription; Devanagari: स्वाहा, chi. 薩婆訶 sà pó hē, jp. sowaka, tib. སྭཱཧཱ་ soha)

2) As a feminine noun, svāhā in the Rigveda may also mean "oblation" (to Agni or Indra).

3) As oblation personified, Svāhā is a minor goddess, and the wife of Agni. She was originally a nymph but became immortal after marrying Agni. In some versions, she is one of the many divine mothers of Kartikeya. She is also the mother of Aagneya (Aagneya) - the daughter of Agni. She is considered to be a daughter of Daksha. She is thought to preside over burnt offerings. Her body is said to consist of the four Vedas and her six limbs are the six Angas of the Vedas.It is said that the gods to whom offerings are being made through yagna refuse the offerings unless the word 'svaha' is uttered during the sacrifice.

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Source: The Jaina Iconography

Svāhā (स्वाहा) is the wife of Agni, one of the Dikpāla or “guardians of the quarters”, a class of deities within Jainism commonly depicted in Jaina art and iconography.—[...] Agni’s wife is Svāhā and he has the charge of the south-eastern regions.

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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

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Svāhā (स्वाहा).—

1) An oblation or offering made to all gods indiscriminately.

2) Name of the wife of Agni; स्वाहा चैव विभावसोः (svāhā caiva vibhāvasoḥ) (patidevatā) Mb.13.146.5. -ind.An exclamation used in offering oblation to the gods (with dat.); इन्द्राय स्वाहा (indrāya svāhā); अग्नये स्वाहा (agnaye svāhā) &c.

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

Svāhā (स्वाहा).—Ind. An exclamation uttered at the time of making an offering to the gods, (used with a noun in the dative.) f.

(-hā) 1. A personification of the preceding, as the wife of fire, and goddess presiding over burnt offerings. 2. An oblation made to Gods indiscriminately. 3. A female divinity, peculiar to the Baud'dhas. E. su well, auspiciously, āṅ before hveñ to call, to invoke, (the gods,) and ḍā aff.; or svād to taste, aff. ā, and da changed to ha .

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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