creator god in Hinduism
For for the Buddhist deity, see Brahmā (Buddhism).

Brahma (|Sanskrit: ब्रह्मा; IAST: Brahmā) is the Hindu god (deva) of creation and one of the Trimūrti, the others being Vishnu and Shiva. According to the Brahmā Purāṇa, he is the father of Manu, and from Manu all human beings are descended. In the Rāmāyaṇa and the Mahābhārata, he is often referred to as the progenitor or great grandsire of all human beings. He is not to be confused with the Supreme Cosmic Spirit in Hindu Vedānta philosophy known as Brahman, which is genderless. Brahmā's wife is Saraswati. Saraswati is also known by names such as Sāvitri and Gāyatri, and has taken different forms throughout history. Brahmā is often identified with Prajāpati, a Vedic deity. Being the husband of Saraswati or Vaac Devi (the Goddess of Speech), Brahma is also known as "Vaagish," meaning "Lord of Speech and Sound."

Brahma's consort is Saraswati, goddess of knowledge. - Brahma has four heads and it is believed that from these heads came the four Vedas (the most ancient religious texts for Hindus). Some also believe that the caste system, or four varnas, came from different part of Brahma's body. He has four arms and is usually depicted with a beard. - BBC.

CONTENT : A - F , G - L , M - R , S - Z , See also , External links


Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author

A - FEdit

*Brahma has four heads and it is believed that from these heads came the four Vedas (the most ancient religious texts for Hindus). Some also believe that the caste system, or four varnas, came from different part of Brahma's body. He has four arms and is usually depicted with a beard. - BBC.
Brahma's consort is Saraswati, goddess of knowledge. - BBC.
  • Brahma is the first god in the Hindu triumvirate, or trimurti. The triumvirate consists of three gods who are responsible for the creation, upkeep and destruction of the world. The other two gods are Vishnu and Shiva. Brahma's job was creation of the world and all creatures. His name should not be confused with Brahman, who is the supreme God force present within all things.

  • Brahma is the least worshipped god in Hinduism today. There are only two temples in the whole of India devoted to him, compared with the many thousands devoted to the other two [Vishnu and Shiva].
    • BBC in:"Brahma"
  • Brahma has four heads and it is believed that from these heads came the four Vedas (the most ancient religious texts for Hindus). Some also believe that the caste system, or four varnas, came from different part of Brahma's body. He has four arms and is usually depicted with a beard.
    • BBC in:"Brahma"
  • Lord Shiva admonished Brahma for demonstrating behaviour of an incestuous nature and chopped off his fifth head for 'unholy' behaviour. Since Brahma had distracted his mind from the soul and towards the cravings of the flesh, Shiva's curse was that people should not worship Brahma. As a form of repentance, it is said that Brahma has been continually reciting the four Vedas since this time, one from each of his four heads.
    • BBC in:"Brahma"
  • ...a number of stories in the Hindu mythology which point to why he is rarely worshipped. The first view is that Brahma created a woman in order to aid him with his job of creation. She was called Shatarupa. She was so beautiful that Brahma became infatuated with her, and gazed at her wherever she went. This caused her extreme embarrassment and Shatarupa tried to turn from his gaze. But in every direction she moved, Brahma sprouted a head until he had developed four. Finally, Shatarupa grew so frustrated that she jumped to try to avoid his gaze. Brahma, in his obsession, sprouted a fifth head on top of all. It is also said in some sources that Shatarupa kept changing her form. She became every creature on earth to avoid Brahma. He however, changed his form to the male version of whatever she was and thus every animal community in the world was created.
    • BBC in:"Brahma"
  • BRAHMA, n. He who created the Hindoos, who are preserved by Vishnu and destroyed by Siva -- a rather neater division of labor than is found among the deities of some other nations. The Abracadabranese, for example, are created by Sin, maintained by Theft and destroyed by Folly. The priests of Brahma, like those of Abracadabranese, are holy and learned men who are never naughty.
    • Ambrose Bierce, The Cynic's Dictionary (1906); republished as The Devil's Dictionary (1911).
...Brahma was born from a golden egg and created the earth and all things on it. Later myths describe him as having come forth from a lotus that issued from Vishnu’s navel. - The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica.
  • Brahma, one of the major gods of Hinduism from about 500 BC to 500 AD, who was gradually eclipsed by Vishnu, Shiva, and the great Goddess (in her multiple aspects). Associated with the Vedic creator god Prajapati, whose identity he assumed, Brahma was born from a golden egg and created the earth and all things on it. Later myths describe him as having come forth from a lotus that issued from Vishnu’s navel.
  • By the middle of the 1st millennium ce, an attempt to synthesize the diverging sectarian traditions is evident in the doctrine of Trimurti, which considers Vishnu, Shiva, and Brahma as three forms of the supreme unmanifested deity. By the 7th century, he had largely lost his claim to being a supreme deity, although the Trimurti continued to figure importantly in both text and sculpture. Today there is no cult or sect that exclusively worships Brahma, and few temples are dedicated to him. Nevertheless, all temples dedicated to Shiva or Vishnu must contain an image of Brahma.
  • Brahma is usually depicted as having four faces, symbolic of a wide-ranging four-square capacity, as expressed in the four Vedas (collections of poems and hymns), the four yugas (“ages”), the four varnas (social classes), the four directions, the four stages of orthodox life, or life according to correct practice (ashramas), and so forth. He is usually shown with four arms, holding an alms bowl, a bow, prayer beads, and a book. He may be seated or standing on a lotus throne or on his mount, a goose. Savitri and Sarasvati, respectively exemplars of faithfulness and of music and learning, frequently accompany him.

G - LEdit

  • After dissolution of the Universe, Brahma, drifting in the primordial waters that preceded creation, came across Ganesha sitting in a lone banyan tree that remained. Ganesha touched Brahma's head and initiated him into the mantra 'Om'. Brahma prayed before Ganesha who bestowed upon him the knowledge to create the universe, in return for which he gave Ganesha his two wives, representative of prudence and prosperity.
  • All Hindu gods killed evil creatures and became heroic images. This is the only religion in the world where the Destroyer becomes god. Whom did they kill? From Brahma to Krishna, those who were killed were evil to the society thus restoring peace.

M - REdit

  • So it is that bird and man, Sun and moon Are born and die in Brahma the Sacred–Where all things become one.
    • Mihai Eminescu source: Tattwamasi, Mihai Eminescu.Quoted from Gewali, Salil (2013). Great Minds on India. New Delhi: Penguin Random House.
  • The knowers of ancient things call this Purana Brahma Vaivarta because in it Brahman (I Khanda [chapter]) and the Universe (II Khanda) are unfolded by Krishna. The actual structure of the Brahma and the Prakriti khandas, is a further corroboration that in the word ‘Brahma-Vivarta’ what is meant is Brahman and not Brahma. It is the Purana of manifested Brahmin, which seems to be comprehensive of all topics of the Purana.
...Purusha was personified as Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva while Prakriti was personified as Saraswati, Lakshmi and Shakti. - Devdutt Pattanaik.
  • In every third world age (Dvapara), Vishnu, in the person of Vyasa, in order to promote the good of mankind, divides the Veda, which is properly but one, into many portions. Observing the limited perseverance, energy, and application of mortals, he makes the Veda fourfold, to adapt it to their capacities; and the bodily form which he assumes, in order to effect that classification, is known by the name of Veda-vyasa. Of the different Vyasas in the present Manvantara and the branches which they have taught, you shall have an account. Twenty-eight times have the Vedas been arranged by the great Rishis in the Vaivasvata Manvantara... and consequently eight and twenty Vyasas have passed away; by whom, in the respective periods, the Veda has been divided into four. The first... distribution was made by Svayambhu (Brahma) himself; in the second, the arranger of the Veda (Vyasa) was Prajapati... (and so on up to twenty-eight).
  • The individual self is subject to beginningless nescience, which has brought about an accumulation of karma, of the nature of both merit and demerit. The flood of such karma causes his entry into four kinds of bodies — heavenly, human, animal and plant beginning with that of Brahma downwards. This ingression into bodies produces the delusion of identity with those respective bodies (and the consequent attachments and aversions). This delusion inevitably brings about all the fears inherent in the state of worldly existence.

S - ZEdit

  • The Hindu religion is the only one of the world's great faiths dedicated to the idea that the Cosmos itself undergoes an immense, indeed an infinite, number of deaths and rebirths. It is the only religion in which the time scales correspond to those of modern scientific cosmology. Its cycles run from our ordinary day and night to a day and night of Brahma, 8.64 billion years long. Longer than the age of the Earth or the Sun and about half the time since the Big Bang. And there are much longer time scales still.
...Guru is the creator Brahma, Guru is the preserver Vishnu, Guru is the destroyer Shiva. Guru is directly the supreme spirit — I offer my salutations to this Guru. - Adi Shankara.
  • The human soul is on its journey from the law to love, from discipline to liberation, from the moral plane to the spiritual. Buddha preached the discipline of self-restraint and moral life; it is a complete acceptance of law. But this bondage of law cannot be an end by itself; by mastering it thoroughly we acquire the means of getting beyond it. It is going back to Brahma, to the infinite love, which is manifesting itself through the finite forms of law.
  • Soul means Brahma; and the Brhmajnan flows through soul to the intellect. That is termed Atmajnan. Thus Soul (Atma), Brahma, and Om have same meaning.
  • The Puranas are post-Vedic texts which typically contain a complete narrative of the history of the Universe from creation to destruction, genealogies of the kings, heroes and demigods, and descriptions of Hindu cosmology and geography. There are 18 canonical Puranas, divided into three categories, each named after a deity: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. There are also many other works termed Purana, known as 'Upapuranas.
Om means Brahma. Meaning “whole world is in this word”. - Mandukya Upanishad.
  • Magnifying and applying come I,
    Outbidding at the start the old cautious hucksters,
    Taking myself the exact dimensions of Jehovah,
    Lithographing Kronos, Zeus his son, and Hercules his grandson,
    Buying drafts of Osiris, Isis, Belus, Brahma, Buddha,
    In my portfolio placing Manito loose,Allah on a leaf, the crucifix engraved,
    With Odin and the hideous-faced Mexitli and every idol and image,
    Taking them all for what they are worth and not a cent more,
    Admitting they were alive and did the work of their days,
    (They bore mites as for unfledg'd birds who have now to rise and fly and sing for themselves).
  • Brahma Purana is the whole of which was formerly repeated by Brahma to Marichi and contains ten thousands stanzas. In all the lists of Puranas, Brahma Purana is placed at the head of the series, and is thence sometimes also entitled to Adi or ‘First’ Purana. It is also designated as Saura, as it is in great part appropriated to the worship of Surya, the ‘sun’. There is a supplementary or concluding section called the Brahmottara Khanda, which contains about three thousand more; but there is every reason to conclude that this a distinct and unconnected work...The immediate narrator of the Brahma Purana is Lomaharshana, who communicates it to the Rishis or sages assembled at Naimisharanya, as it was originally revealed by Brahma, not to Marichi as the Matsya affirms, but to Daksha, another of the patriarchs: hence the denomination of the Brahma Purana.
  • Brahmananda Purana, has declared in twelve thousand two hundred verses, the magnificence of the egg of Brahma, and in which an account of the future Kalpa is contained, as was revealed by Brahma. It is usually considered to be in much the same predicament as Skanda, no longer procurable in a collective body, but represented by a variety of Khandas and Mahatmyas, professing to be derived from it.
    • H.H.Wilson, in "Oriental Translation Fund, Volume 52 , Volume 52 (1840)", p. liv


  • At the muezzin's call for prayer,
    The kneeling faithful thronged the square,
    And on Pushkara's lofty height
    The dark priest chanted Brahma's might.
    Amid a monastery's weeds
    An old Franciscan told his beads;
    While to the synagogue there came
    A Jew to praise Jehovah's name.
    The one great God looked down and smiled
    And counted each His loving child;
    For Turk and Brahmin, monk and Jew
    Had reached Him through the gods they knew.

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