Chapter

Brahmā

Arvind Sharma

in Classical Hindu Thought

Published in print July 2001 | ISBN: 9780195658712
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199082018 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195658712.003.0007
Brahmā

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The first member of the Hindu trinity is Brahmā. The name has usually been explained as the masculinization of Brahman, which designates the ultimate reality in the neuter. However, it is also plausible that the god arose as a divinization of Brahmā, a word which originally designated a supervisory priest. Brahmā is closely associated with the Vedas, and to see how this association is connected with creation, one has to take into account certain characteristic Hindu ideas. One of them is that the universe undergoes periodic cycles of appearance and dissolution, on a rather spectacular scale. This chapter provides an account of the temporal dimensions involved, before which even computation in light years begins to appear rather dim.

Keywords: Hindu trinity; Brahman; Vedas; creation; universe; dissolution of the universe; god; divinization

Chapter.  2549 words. 

Subjects: Hinduism

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