Vyantara; 4 Definition(s)


Vyantara means something in Jainism, Prakrit, Hinduism, Sanskrit. 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 Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Vyantara in Jainism glossary... « previous · [V] · next »

Vyantara (व्यन्तर).—The vyantaras represent a class of Gods (devas) comprising eight groups of deities that wander about the three worlds (adhaloka, madhyaloka and ūrdhvaloka).

The following are the eight groups of vyantaras:

  1. Piśāca,
  2. Bhūta,
  3. Yakṣa,
  4. Rākṣasa,
  5. Kiṃnara,
  6. Kiṃpuruṣa,
  7. Mahoraga,
  8. Gandharva.

Each group of deities is made up of different members and ruled over by two kings (indras), idintified by a colour, a symbol and a species of tree.

Source: Wisdom Library: Jainism

Vyantara (व्यन्तर).—The Vyantaras or Vāṇamantaras living in the Ratnaprabhā earth are divided into eight chief classes by both the sects (Digambara and Śvetāmbara). They are:

  1. Piśācas,
  2. Bhūtas,
  3. Yakṣas,
  4. Rākṣasas,
  5. Kinnaras,
  6. Kimpuruṣas,
  7. Mahoragas,
  8. Gandharvas.

The Tiloyapannatti further says that vyantara cities of the jambūdvīpa have various types of gṛhas namely sāmānyagṛha, caityagṛha, kadalīgṛha, garbhagṛha, latāgṛha, nādagṛha and āsanagṛha. In the beautiful palaces of the city are various types of seats, of the shape of elephants, lions, parrots, peacocks, crocodiles, eagles, swans etc.

The Prajñāpanā describes the general appearance of all the Vānamantaras or Vyantaras. They are of an unsteady nature attached to dance and music, adorned with vanamālās of various flowers, wearing garments of different colours, and used to taking different shapes and forms, smiling or laughing. They like love-quarrels and adorn their bodies with various ornaments such as the aṅgada, kuṇḍala, karṇapīṭha etc., and with marks of sandal pastes. they carry sword, mudgara (club), śakti (dark) and kunta (spear) in their hands.

Source: Google Books: Jaina Iconography

Vyantara (व्यन्तर) refers to “peripatetic (forest) celestial beings” and represents one of the four classes of Devas, according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 4.3. These celestial beings have transformable bodies. They generally live in the deserted places of the middle world. They normally intrude the bodies of human and subhuman beings to make them enjoy or suffer. They have large families and wealth.

The peripatetic gods (vyantara) have eight subclasses namely:

  1. Kinnara (music-obsessed),
  2. Kimpuruṣa, (sex-obsessed)
  3. Mahoraga (great serpent),
  4. Gandharva (musician),
  5. Yakṣa (treasure keeper),
  6. Rākṣasa (demon),
  7. Bhūta (devil),
  8. Piśāca (goblin).

Where do peripatetic celestial beings live? The dwelling places of the seven subclasses are in the upper hard khara part and demons reside in Paṅkabahula part of the first infernal region.

Source: Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra 4: The celestial beings (deva)
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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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

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

Vyantara (व्यन्तर).—A spirit, a kind of supernatural being; अस्माकं कश्चिद् व्यन्तरः सिद्धः (asmākaṃ kaścid vyantaraḥ siddhaḥ) Pt.5.

Derivable forms: vyantaraḥ (व्यन्तरः).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary
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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Relevant definitions

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Deva (देव).—m. (-vaḥ) 1. A deity, a god. 2. A king, in poetical language. 3. A husbands’s broth...
Yakṣa (यक्ष).—(as in Sanskrit): (1) mahāntaṃ yakṣaṃ, applied to Māra: Mv ii.260.10; 261.11. Cf....
1) Gandharva (गन्धर्व).—Gandharvas are sons born to the famous Kaśyapaprajāpati of his wife, Ar...
Bhūta.—(CII 1), a living being. (IE 8-5), the element or nature. (IE 7-1-2), ‘five’. (CII 3, et...
Indra (इन्द्र).—m. (-ndraḥ) 1. The deity presiding over Swarga or the Hindu paradise, and the s...
Rākṣasa (राक्षस).—mfn. (-saḥ-sī-saṃ) Infernal, demoniacal. m. (-saḥ) An evil spirit, a demon, a...
Piśāca (पिशाच) refers to a group of inhabitants of ancient Kaśmīra (Kashmir valley) according t...
Kāla (काल) refers to the God of “death and time” and is stationed at Kālātīta, as defined in th...
Kinnara (किन्नर).—m. (-raḥ) 1. A demigod attached to the service of Kuvera, a celestial quirist...
Bhīma (भीम).—mfn. (-maḥ-mā-maṃ) Horrible, fearful, terrific. n. (-maṃ) Horror, terror. m. (-maḥ...
Kiṃpuruṣa (किंपुरुष).—[, Mv i.23.2, or °ṣaka, i.20.6; Senart reads °ṣakānāṃ (all mss. dental n!...
Mahoraga (महोरग).—a great serpent; वपुर्महोरगस्येव करालफणमण्डलम् (vapurmahoragasyeva karālaphaṇ...
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Lokapāla.—(CII 3, etc.), a guardian of one of the quarters of the world, originally conceived a...
Manuṣya (मनुष्य).—m. (-ṣyaḥ) Man, a man, mankind. E. manu the progenitor of mankind, yat aff. o...

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