Vajrapani, aka: Vajrapāṇi, Vajrapāṇī, Vajra-pani; 9 Definition(s)


Vajrapani means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India. 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 Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Vajrapāṇi (वज्रपाणि) is the name of a deity to be contemplated upon by a practicioner purifying his correspondences (viśuddhi), according to the Abhisamayamañjarī. Vajrapāṇi is alternatively known by the name Dveṣavajra because he is the enemy of malice (dveṣa). The contemplation is prescribed as a preliminary ritual for a yogin wishing to establish, or reestablish the union with a deity.

Vajrapāṇi is associated with the ears and the color black. He is to be visualised as holding an attribute in his right hand and a bell in his left. The deities of the sense organs and fields are the esoteric equivalents of the deities associated with the skandhas.

The Abhisamayamañjarī by Śākyarakṣita is a Buddhist tantric text closely related to the Herukābhisamaya by Lūyīpāda, which in turn is probably based upon the Yoginīsaṃcāratantra.

Source: Wisdomlib Libary: Vajrayogini

Vajrapāṇi (वज्रपाणि) is the name of an ancient Tibetan tantric deity.—The iconographic group of Vajrapāṇi and the eight Nāga Kings is so far scarcely studied. As is well-known, Mahāyāna considers Vajrapāṇi as one of the eight great Bodhisattvas, disciples of the Buddha and the major auditor and protector of Tantric texts received from the Buddha in the form of Vajradhāra. It is no surprise then that his image obtained an important place in the Vajrayāna tradition. The image of the Two-Handed Wrathful Vajrapāṇi is among the most wide-spread and familiar in Tibetan Buddhist arts.

In the Sarvadurgatipariśodhana-tantra, Vajrapāṇi is depicted as an one-faced, two-handed deity of white color and peaceful appearance, the eight Nāga Kings located in petals of a lotus surrounding the central figure. The joint use of their images in one maṇḍala can be connected with a legend on the taming of a gigantic serpent by the Buddha in Uddayana when he appointed Vajrapāṇi the protector of the nāgas against their enemies Garuḍas. At the same time, Vajrapāṇi is a commander of the Nāgas and can be depicted in the wrathful form.

Source: A Collection of Tantric Ritual Texts
Tibetan Buddhism book cover
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Tibetan Buddhism includes schools such as Nyingma, Kadampa, Kagyu and Gelug. Their primary canon of literature is divided in two broad categories: The Kangyur, which consists of Buddha’s words, and the Tengyur, which includes commentaries from various sources. Esotericism and tantra techniques (vajrayāna) are collected indepently.

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Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Vajrapani in Mahayana glossary... « previous · [V] · next »

Vajrapāṇi (वज्रपाणि) threw away the rock thrown at the Buddha with his thunderbolt (vajrakīla) according to the 2nd century Mahāprajñāpāramitāśāstra (chapter XXIV).—Accordingly, “Then Devadatta conceived a dire plan (duṣṭacitta): he pushed down a rock to crush the Buddha. But Kin kang li che (Vajrapāṇi) with his thunderbolt (vajrakīla) threw the rock far away. However, a rock splinter split off which wounded the Buddha’s toe”.

Source: Wisdom Library: Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra
Mahayana book cover
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Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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General definition (in Buddhism)

Vajrapani in Buddhism glossary... « previous · [V] · next »

Vajrapāṇī (वज्रपाणी) refers to the fourth of the “eight Bodhisattvas” (aṣṭabodhisattva) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 12). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., aṣṭa-bodhisattva and Vajrapāṇī). The work is attributed to Nagarguna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

India history and geogprahy

Bodhisatva Vajrapani.—Buddhist monks introduced Buddhism in Yavana Janapada. Many Indo-Greek kings accepted Buddhism as state religion. A Bodhisatva Vajrapani was believed to be the incarnation of Heracles.

Source: The Yona or Yavana Kings of the time of the Legendary King Ashoka

Bodhisattva Nagarjuna Vajrapani was the founder of Mahayana Buddhism. He was also referred to as Padmapani, Padmasambhava, Samantabhadra etc. According to Gilgit Manuscripts, Vajrapani attained nirvana 400 years before King Kanishka. Samyuka-Ratna-Pitaka-Sutra of Chinese Suttapitaka records that King Kanishka flourished 700 years after Buddha nirvana. Thus, there was at least 300 years difference between the date of Buddha nirvana and the date of nirvana of Vajrapani

Source: The Chronological History of Tibetan Buddhism
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as 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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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Vajrapani in Sanskrit glossary... « previous · [V] · next »

Vajrapāṇi (वज्रपाणि).—(in Sanskrit ep. of Indra; in Pali Vajirapāṇi is n. of a yakkha, also of Indra, the two being identified, at least sometimes; on his character see DPPN; in BHS sometimes = Indra, as in Mv i.183.10 where his form is assumed by Buddha; probably also in Gv 250.20, where he parallels, and forms the climax of, a series of devatās; and probably SP 445.6), n. of a yakṣa, Māy 3 (living at Rāja- gṛha); compare Vajra-rājagṛha; usually not, as in Māy, a mere local yakṣa, but a much more imposing and even terrifying yakṣa, who e.g. in Bbh 152.1 may be conjured up by a Bodhisattva to frighten evil-doers (compare also Caṇḍa- vajrapāṇi); often called by epithets like mahāyakṣa- senāpati Suv 85.3, guhyakādhipati 91.17 (see the word, and compare LV 66.6), yakṣendra 158.13; similarly Mmk 548.7, and often; elsewhere he is an important Bodhisattva, at or near the head of lists of them, Kv 1.7; Mvy 649; one of eight, Dharmas 12; a special attendant on Buddha Laṅk 240.10; a Bodhisattva in the 8th bhūmi is Vajrapāṇi- satatānubaddha, Dbh 71.22; other references to V. the Bodhisattva, Śikṣ 274.3; Sādh 49.13 etc.; Mmk 11.6; 62.28; 68.20, etc.; it is clear, however, that for Mmk, at least, the Bodhisattva and the yakṣa or guhyaka prince are the same person; so Vajrapāṇir bodhisattvo 25.8 is referred to in 12 as (Ā)guhyakādhipatinā yak- ṣendreṇa; in addressing Vajrapāṇiṃ guhyakādhipatim, 36.2, he is called jinaputra (= bodhisattva) in the next line; he is called a bodhisattva in 145.2 and 13, and addressed as yakṣeśa in 14.

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

Vajrapāṇi (वज्रपाणि).—m.

(-ṇiḥ) Indra. E. vajra the bolt, pāṇi the hand: see vajradhara .

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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Relevant definitions

Search found 745 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Vajra (वज्र).—mfn. (-jraḥ-jrā-jraṃ) 1. Hard, impenetrable, adamantine. 2. Cross, forked. mn. (-...
Pāṇi (पाणि).—m. (-ṇiḥ) The hand. f. (-ṇiḥ) A place of sale, a shop, a market. E. paṇ to be of p...
Vajrāsana (वज्रासन) or Paryaṅkāsana in the Buddhist tradition corresponds with Padmāsana or Kam...
Daṇḍapāṇi (दण्डपाणि).—n. of a Śākya, father of Gopā, q.v.: LV 140.9 ff.; 153.20 ff.; 157.3; Suv...
Vajrāyudha (वज्रायुध) is the warder of Mahendrāditya, a world-conquering king (jagajjayin) from...
1) Vajranābha (वज्रनाभ).—A warrior of Subrahmaṇya. (Mahābhārata Śalya Parva, Chapter 45, Stanza...
Vajramuṣṭi (वज्रमुष्टि).—A giant. Vajramuṣṭi was the son born to Mālyavān of his wife Sundarī. ...
Pāṇigrāha (पाणिग्राह).—m. (-haḥ) 1. Laying hold of the hand. 2. Marriage. E. pāṇi, and grāha ta...
Vajradhara (वज्रधर).—m. (-raḥ) 1. Indra, as the Jupiter Tonans of the Hindus. 2. A Baud'dha sai...
Indravajrā (इन्द्रवज्रा).—Name of two metres, see Appendix. Indravajrā is a Sanskrit compound c...
1) Upendravajrā (उपेन्द्रवज्रा) refers to one of the 135 metres (chandas) mentioned by Nañjuṇḍa...
Sudhāpāṇi (सुधापाणि).—m. (-ṇiḥ) The divine physician, Dhanwantari. E. sudhā nectar, pāṇi hand, ...
Vajradaṃṣṭra (वज्रदंष्ट्र) is the name of a Vidyādhara king, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara,...
Pāṇitala (पाणितल).—n. (-laṃ) 1. The palm of the hand. 2. A measure of two Tolas. E. pāṇi, and t...
Vajratuṇḍa (वज्रतुण्ड).—m. (-ṇḍaḥ) 1. The deity Ganesa. 2. Garuda, the bird and vehicle of Vish...

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