Bahvṛcopanisad

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By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Bahvrcopanisad, BahvRcopanisad, Bahvrricopanisad


Contents of the Bahvṛcopanisad

This is one of the minor Upaniṣads of recent origin (13th cent. A. D.) and is sectarian in character. It belongs to the Ṛgvedic tradition and deals with the Goddess Śakti. The entire Upaniṣad is short and written in prose, except for quotations. It deals with the first existence of beings and attributes of the Goddess Śakti.

Creation of Beings

In the beginning, the Devī or the Goddess alone existed. She created the Cosmic Egg. Many beings on the Earth were born from that egg. They are :

  1. Brahmā
  2. Viṣṇu
  3. Rudra
  4. Māruts - Wind-gods
  5. Gandharvas - Celestial minstrels
  6. Apsaras - Nymphs

Efficacy of Goddess Śakti

Śakti is the Supreme Power. She is the various arts and sciences like :

  1. The Sāmbhavī-vidyā - The science of Śambhu or God
  2. The Kādi-vidyā
  3. The Hādi-vidyā
  4. The Sādi-vidyā - Sciences related to the Divine Mother

She is Om and abides in the realm of words as their import. She is Mahātripurasundarī pervading the three bodies - the gross, the subtle and the causal as pure consciousness. She alone is the Ātman. Nothing exists apart from her. She is the contemplation of mahākavyas.

Different names of Goddess Śakti

She is called by various names. Some of them have been mentioned below :

  1. Bālā
  2. Ambikā
  3. Bagalā
  4. Mātaṅgī
  5. Bhuvaneśvari
  6. Cāmuṇḍā
  7. Vārāhi
  8. Aśvārudhā
  9. Pratyañgirā
  10. Dhumāvati
  11. Sāvitrī
  12. Sarasvatī

References

  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore