Vahni: 25 definitions


Vahni means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit, the history of ancient India, biology. 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

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Kubjikāmata-tantra

Vahni (वह्नि):—Fourth of the eight Mahāmātṛs existing within the Mātṛcakra, according to the Kubjikāmatatantra. Vahni stands for the “fire”. The eight Mahāmātṛs are also called mudrās because all the directions are ‘sealed’ by them.

Vahni (as do each of the eight Mahāmātṛs) divides herself into eight (secondary) mātṛs, presided over by a Bhairava (fearsome manifestations of Śiva) and his Mātṛkā as consorts. The Mātṛs of this fourth and southern group are born from Vahni’s body but their relation to fire is not quite clear. They are presided over by Unmatta Bhairava.

The eight deities originating from Vahni are called:

  1. Tṛṣṇā (‘Thirst’),
  2. Rāgavatī (‘Impassioned’),
  3. Mohā (‘Delusion’),
  4. Kāmā (‘Desire’),
  5. Kopā (‘Anger’),
  6. Tamotkaṭā (‘Highly Ignorant’),
  7. Īrṣā (‘Envy’) 
  8. and Śokavatī (‘Sorrowful’).

Since they denote mental dispositions or emotions which may be considered as obstructing the attainment of liberating knowledge, they may refer metaphorically to the ‘fire of the saṃsāra.’

Source: Brill: Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions (philosophy)

1) Vahni (वह्नि) refers to a “fire”, according to Utpaladeva’s Vivṛti on Īśvarapratyabhijñākārikā 1.5.6.—Accordingly, “Even an ordinary human practice that is based on an inference [—such as trying to reach a fire the presence of which is merely inferred from the perception of smoke—can only occur] thanks to a fire (vahni) that is necessarily being manifest [at the very time of this endeavour]; even in a conceptual cognition, fire (vahni) is determined [as being] external [to consciousness only insofar as] it is manifested. [...]”

2) Vahni (वह्नि) refers to a “ritually-purified fire”, according to Somānanda’s Śivadṛṣṭi verse 3.42cd–47.—Accordingly, “[...] How can there be something pure, something diminished, etc., when his nature is undivided? The fact of being gold simply exists in gold, (be it) in (the form of) a golden spittoon, etc., or in (the form of) a tiara, etc. The (fact of being) gold is in no way divided [i.e., differentiated] whatsoever. If you argue that a fire (vahni) installed in an outcaste’s house is not (properly) called a fire (vahni) [i.e., it is not a proper, ritually-purified fire], we reply: that may be so [i.e., this does not contradict our notion of the uniformity of the nature of fire as such]. [...]”.

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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Ayurveda (science of life)

Source: Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany

Vahni (वह्नि, “fire”):—Another name for Citraka (Plumbago zeylanica), a species of medicinal plant and used in the treatment of fever (jvara), as described in the Jvaracikitsā (or “the treatment of fever”) which is part of the 7th-century Mādhavacikitsā, a Sanskrit classical work on Āyurveda.

Source: Vagbhata’s Ashtanga Hridaya Samhita (first 5 chapters)

Vahni (वह्नि) refers to “gastric fire”, mentioned in verse 3.44 of the Aṣṭāṅgahṛdayasaṃhitā (Sūtrasthāna) by Vāgbhaṭa.—Accordingly, “[...] These get irritated when the sky is covered with clouds banging down because of their water, (and that) by wind accompanied with drizzle and suddenly (turned) cold, ground vapour, water liable to sour digestion and polluted, and poor (gastric) fire [viz., vahni]”.

Note: Vahni (“gastric fire”) has been paraphrased by me-drod (“heat of the gastric fire”); cf. me-yi drod in v, 18.

Source: Shodhganga: Edition translation and critical study of yogasarasamgraha

Vahni (वह्नि) is another name for “Agni” and is dealt with in the 15th-century Yogasārasaṅgraha (Yogasara-saṅgraha) by Vāsudeva: an unpublished Keralite work representing an Ayurvedic compendium of medicinal recipes. The Yogasārasaṃgraha [mentioning vahni] deals with entire recipes in the route of administration, and thus deals with the knowledge of pharmacy (bhaiṣajya-kalpanā) which is a branch of pharmacology (dravyaguṇa).

Source: Ayurveda glossary of terms

Vahni (वह्नि):—Digestive power

Source: Shodhganga: Portrayal of Animal Kingdom (Tiryaks) in Epics An Analytical study

Vahni (वह्नि) (lit. “one who draws or bears along”) is a synonym (another name) for the Horse (Aśva), according to scientific texts such as the Mṛgapakṣiśāstra (Mriga-pakshi-shastra) or “the ancient Indian science of animals and birds” by Hamsadeva, containing the varieties and descriptions of the animals and birds seen in the Sanskrit Epics such as the Ramayana and Mahabharata.

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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Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra

Vahni (वह्नि) is a Sanskrit word referring to “fire”. Acording to the Nāṭyaśāstra 1.82-88, when Brahmā, Indra and all other gods went to inspect the playhouse (nāṭyamaṇḍapa) designed by Viśvakarmā, he assigned different deities for the protection of the playhouse itself, as well as for the objects relating to dramatic performance (prayoga).

As such, Brahmā assigned Vahni to the protection of the stage (altar, vedikā). The protection of the playhouse was enacted because of the jealous Vighnas (malevolent spirits), who began to create terror for the actors.

Natyashastra book cover
context information

Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (shastra) of performing arts, (natya—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), construction and performance of Theater, and Poetic works (kavya).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

1) Vahni (वह्नि).—An asura. It is mentioned in Mahābhārata, Śānti Parva, Chapter 227, Stanza 52 that this asura had been a lokapāla (Indra, Agni, Yama and Varuṇa were called lokapālas) in olden days.

2) Vahni (वह्नि).—The son of the King Turvasu. Vahni had a son named Bharga who became very famous. (Bhāgavata, Skandha 9; Brahmāṇḍa Purāṇa, 3: 74. 1).

3) Vahni (वह्नि).—One of the sons born to Kṛṣṇa by Mitravindā. (Bhāgavata, Skandha 10).

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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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

Vahni (वह्नि) refers to the “fire”, according to the Devīpañcaśataka, an important source of the Kālīkrama that developed in Kashmir after the Kālī Mata of the Jayadrathayāmala.—Accordingly, “The permutation (of the Transmental) is said to be the Light that precedes the mistress of the Wheel of Rays [i.e., puñjacakra-īśī] (of divine consciousness). [...] (That light) is not the moon, (or) the light of the stars; it is not the light of the rays of (the sun), the lord of the sky, nor is it the brilliance of lightning—nor is it like the beautiful sun (of energy). That Light (bhāsā) is seen in the belly (of consciousness) with the eye of knowledge, that is, in the eye on the path of opening. She is not seen otherwise. All (things) shine due to her: Fire, Moon, Sun and stars [i.e., vahni-candrārka-tārakā]. As the division of Sun and Moon, she bestows the plane of oneness. Thus she is the aggregate (kula) of rays and, ferocious, she is the Supreme One (Parā) who has reached the final end of Kula and devours duality with the Yoga of the Fire of (Universal) Destruction.”.—(Cf. Puñjacakra).

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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Ganitashastra (Mathematics and Algebra)

Source: Hindu Mathematics

Vahni (वह्नि) represents the number 3 (three) in the “word-numeral system” (bhūtasaṃkhyā), which was used in Sanskrit texts dealing with astronomy, mathematics, metrics, as well as in the dates of inscriptions and manuscripts in ancient Indian literature.—A system of expressing numbers by means of words arranged as in the place-value notation was developed and perfected in India in the early centuries of the Christian era. In this system the numerals [e.g., 3—vahni] are expressed by names of things, beings or concepts, which, naturally or in accordance with the teaching of the Śāstras, connote numbers.

Ganitashastra book cover
context information

Ganitashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, gaṇitaśāstra) refers to the ancient Indian science of mathematics, algebra, number theory, arithmetic, etc. Closely allied with astronomy, both were commonly taught and studied in universities, even since the 1st millennium BCE. Ganita-shastra also includes ritualistic math-books such as the Shulba-sutras.

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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Source: Shodhganga: Elements of Art and Architecture in the Trtiyakhanda of the Visnudharmottarapurana (shilpa)

Vahni (वह्नि) is the synonym of Agni. In the Viṣṇudharmottarapurāṇa the word vahni is used to denote the god Agni. His iconography is described in the Viṣṇudharmottarapurāṇa, an ancient Sanskrit text which (being encyclopedic in nature) deals with a variety of cultural topics such as arts, architecture, music, grammar and astronomy.

Shilpashastra book cover
context information

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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In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Source: Trisastisalakapurusacaritra

1) Vahni (वह्नि) or Agni refers to one of the nine divisions of the Lokāntika-gods, according to chapter 1.2 [ādīśvara-caritra] of Hemacandra’s 11th century Triṣaṣṭiśalākāpuruṣacaritra: an ancient Sanskrit epic poem narrating the history and legends of sixty-three illustrious persons in Jainism.

Accordingly, “[...] while in this way the Supreme Lord’s mind was woven with the threads of continuity of disgust with saṃsāra, then the Lokāntika-gods who have nine sub-divisions—Sārasvatas, Ādityas, Vahnis, Aruṇas, Gardatoyas, Tuṣitas, Avyābādhas, Maruts, and Riṣṭas, living at the end of Brahmaloka, having additional ornaments made by folded hands like lotus-buds on their heads, came to the feet of the Lord of the World”.

2) Vahni (वह्नि) is the name of a vidyā subdued by Rāvaṇa, according to the Jain Ramayana and chapter 7.1 [origin of the rākṣasavaṃśa and vānaravaṃśa].—Accordingly, “[...] Rāvaṇa, knowing the highest good, not considering it worthless, remained motionless like a high mountain, absorbed in preeminent meditation. ‘Well done! Well done!’ was the cry of gods in the sky, and the Yakṣa-servants departed quickly, terrified. One thousand vidyās, the sky being lighted up by them, came to Daśāsya (=Rāvaṇa), saying aloud, ‘We are subject to you.’ [e.g., Vahni, ...] great vidyās beginning with these were subdued by noble Daśāsya in just a few days because of his former good acts. [...]”.

Source: The University of Sydney: A study of the Twelve Reflections

Vahni (वह्नि) refers to “fire”, according to the 11th century Jñānārṇava, a treatise on Jain Yoga in roughly 2200 Sanskrit verses composed by Śubhacandra.—Accordingly, “Also, the fool who seeks happiness in sense objects, enters a fire (vahnivahniṃ viśati) in order to be cool [and] he would drink poison in order to live”.

Synonyms: Dahana, Anala, Agni.

General definition book cover
context information

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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India history and geography

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary

Vahni.—(IE 7-1-2), ‘three’. Note: vahni is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

--- OR ---

Vahni.—(EI 33), ‘three’. Note: vahni is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

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 mythology, zoology, 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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Biology (plants and animals)

Source: Google Books: CRC World Dictionary (Regional names)

1) Vahni in India is the name of a plant defined with Plumbago zeylanica in various botanical sources. This page contains potential references in Ayurveda, modern medicine, and other folk traditions or local practices It has the synonym Plumbago scandens L. (among others).

2) Vahni is also identified with Pongamia pinnata It has the synonym Derris indica (Lam.) Benn. (etc.).

Example references for further research on medicinal uses or toxicity (see latin names for full list):

· Fontqueria (1987)
· Species Plantarum (1762)
· FBI (1882)
· Flora de Filipinas (1837)
· Flora Cochinchinensis (1790)
· Revisio Generum Plantarum (1891)

If you are looking for specific details regarding Vahni, for example health benefits, chemical composition, side effects, extract dosage, pregnancy safety, diet and recipes, have a look at these references.

Biology book cover
context information

This sections includes definitions from the five kingdoms of living things: Animals, Plants, Fungi, Protists and Monera. It will include both the official binomial nomenclature (scientific names usually in Latin) as well as regional spellings and variants.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Vahni (वह्नि).—[vah-niḥ &Uṇādi-sūtra 4.53]

1) Fire; अतृणे पतितो वह्निः स्वयमेवोपशाम्यति (atṛṇe patito vahniḥ svayamevopaśāmyati) Subhāṣ.

2) The digestive faculty, gastric fluid.

3) Digestion, appetite.

4) A vehicle.

5) The marking-nut plant.

6) Lead-wort.

7) A sacrificer, priest.

8) A god in general.

9) An epithet of the Maruts.

1) Of Soma.

11) A horse.

12) A draught animal.

13) The number 'three'.

14) The mystical Name of the letter र् (r); रकार (rakāra).


Derivable forms: vahniḥ (वह्निः).

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

Vahni (वह्नि).—m.

(-hniḥ) 1. Fire, or its deity Agni. 2. Lead-wort, (Plumbago zeylanica.) 3. Marking-nut plant. 4. Appetite, digestion, the metaphorical fire of the stomach. E. vaha to bear, (the oblations presented to the gods,) and ni Unadi aff.

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

Vahni (वह्नि).—[vah + ni], m. 1. A sacrificer, Chr. 288, 11 = [Rigveda.] i. 48, 11. 2. Fire, [Pañcatantra] ii. [distich] 96; or its deity, [Rāmāyaṇa] 3, 53, 60. 3. Digestion, appetite. 4. Marking-nut plant. 5. Lead-wort, Plumbago zeylanica.

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

Vahni (वह्नि).—[masculine] beast for draught, team; conveyer, [especially] who brings an oblation to the gods (Agni); the rider or charioteer ([several] gods), the flowing one (Soma); in [later language] mostly fire or the god of fire.

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

1) Vahni (वह्नि):—[from vah] a m. any animal that draws or bears along, a draught animal, horse, team, [Ṛg-veda; Atharva-veda; Vājasaneyi-saṃhitā; Taittirīya-brāhmaṇa]

2) [v.s. ...] any one who conveys or is borne along (applied to a charioteer or rider, or to various gods, [especially] to Agni, Indra, Savitṛ, the Maruts etc.), [Ṛg-veda; Atharva-veda]

3) [v.s. ...] Name of Soma (as ‘the flowing or streaming one’), [Ṛg-veda ix, 9, 6 etc.]

4) [v.s. ...] the conveyer or bearer of oblations to the gods ([especially] said of Agni, ‘fire’, or of the three sacrificial fires See agni), [Ṛg-veda]

5) [v.s. ...] [particular] fire, [Gṛhyāsaṃgraha]

6) [v.s. ...] fire (in general or ‘the god of fire’), [Manu-smṛti; Mahābhārata] etc. (vahninā saṃ-√skṛ, to hallow by fire, burn solemnly)

7) [v.s. ...] the fire of digestion, [Varāha-mihira’s Bṛhat-saṃhitā]

8) [v.s. ...] Name of the number ‘three’ ([from] the three sacred fires), [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

9) [v.s. ...] Name of various plants ([according to] to [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.] Plumbago Ceylanica; Semecarpus Anacardium; Poa Cynosuroides; and the citron tree), [Suśruta]

10) [v.s. ...] a mystical Name of the letter r, [Upaniṣad]

11) [v.s. ...] Name of the 8th Kalpa (q.v.), [Catalogue(s)]

12) [v.s. ...] of a Daitya, [Mahābhārata]

13) [v.s. ...] of a son of Kṛṣṇa, [Bhāgavata-purāṇa]

14) [v.s. ...] of a son of Turvasu, [ib.]

15) [v.s. ...] of a son of Kukura, [ib.]

16) b etc. See p. 933, col. 3.

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

Vahni (वह्नि):—(hniḥ) 2. m. Fire or its deity; lead wort; marking nut plant; appetite, digestion.

Source: DDSA: Paia-sadda-mahannavo; a comprehensive Prakrit Hindi dictionary (S)

Vahni (वह्नि) in the Sanskrit language is related to the Prakrit word: Vaṇhi.

[Sanskrit to German]

Vahni 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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Kannada-English dictionary

Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Vahni (ವಹ್ನಿ):—

1) [noun] the active principle of burning; fire.

2) [noun] Agni, the Fire-God.

3) [noun] the plant Plumbago zeylanica of Plumbaginaceae family.

4) [noun] any of the drafting animals, as ox, horse, etc.

5) [noun] the digesting faculty in the body.

6) [noun] the clear digestive fluid produced by glands in the mucous membrane lining the stomach which contains enzymes and hydrochloric acid and has a pH of about. 2.0; the gastric juice.

7) [noun] the process of digestion of foods in the body.

8) [noun] (math.) a symbol for the number three.

9) [noun] (pros.) a metrical foot having three syllables, of which the first and third being long, the middle one being short (-u-).

10) [noun] (jain.) a deity of the class of lōkāntika.

context information

Kannada is a Dravidian language (as opposed to the Indo-European language family) mainly spoken in the southwestern region of India.

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