Saturday, December 24, 2011


अदिती - limitless.
Aditi is a goddess of the sky, consciousness, the past, the future and fertility.

In the Vedas Although the Goddess Aditi is mentioned nearly eighty times in the Rig Veda, it is difficult to get a clear picture of her nature. She is usually mentioned along with other gods and goddesses, there is no one hymn addressed exclusively to her, and unlike many other vedic deities, she is not obviously related to some natural phenomenon. Compared to Usas and Prithvi, her character seems undefined. She is virtually featureless physically.

Perhaps the most outstanding attribute of Aditi is her motherhood. She is preeminently the mother of the Adityas, a group of 7 or 8 gods which include Mitra, Aryaman, Bhaga, Varuna, Daksha and Amsa. (2.27.1) Aditi is also said to be the mother of the great god Indra, the mother of kings (2.27), and the mother of gods (1.113.19). Unlike Prithvi, however, whose motherhood is also central to her nature, Aditi does not have a male consort in the Rig Veda. Aditi is the most important figure of all.

As a mothering presence, Aditi is often asked to guard the one who petitions her (1.106.7 ; 8.18.6) or to provide him or her with wealth, safety, and abundance (10.100; 1.94.15). Appropriate to her role as a mother, Aditi is sometimes associated with or identified as a cow. As a cow, she provides nourishment, and as the cosmic cow, her milk is identified with the redemptive, invigorating drink soma (1.153.3)

The name Aditi includes the root "da" (to bind or fetter) and suggests another aspect of her character. As A-diti, she is un-bound, free one, and it is evident in the hymns to her that she is often called to free the petitioner from different hindrances, especially sin and sickness. (2.27.14). In one hymn, she is asked to free a petitioner who has been tied up like a thief (8.67.14). As one who unbinds, her role is similar to her son Varuna's as guardian of rta, cosmic moral order. She is called the supporter of creatures (1.136).

Aditi is also called widely expanded (5.46.6) and extensive, the mistress of wide stalls (8.67.12), and in this respect, one is reminded of Prithvi. In fact, Pritvi and Aditi become virtually identified in the brahamanas.

Aditi also is the mother of the Vamana Avatar of Vishnu. Accordingly, Vishnu was born as the son of Aditi in the month of Shravana (5th month of the Hindu Calendar, also called Avani) under the star Shravana. Many auspicious signs appeared in the heavens, foretelling the good fortune of this child.
From: Wikipedia

In Hindu mythology, Aditi was the goddess of the boundless sky. Her name means "free from bonds" or "the unfettered" or "Limitless" and the Vedas hint that she was once all-encompassing. She undoubtedly pre-dates them, and was once the goddess of the past and the future, the seven dimensions of the cosmos, the celestial light which permeates all things, and the consciousness of all living things.

In later times, she was known better for her children, who were called the Adityas in honor of her. She was named as the consort of Kasyapa or Brahma. She is sometimes depicted in the guise of a cow. She eventually was degraded as a guardian goddess who helped her worshippers find a smooth path to what they were looking for.
From: Aditi

Aditi means the one who is unbound, free and unfettered. She is the personification of the sky and space in which reside all gods, from where Indra sends down his thunder bolt or fights with Vrata to release the waters or where one can see Aditya, the sun god riding in his golden chariot yoked by seven ruddy horses. The Vedic hymns mention her frequently as the mother of gods and all creatures. Although no hymns are directly addressed to Aditi, she was undoubtedly a popular goddess as is evident from the copious references to her name in the Rigveda and Yajurveda, in the hymns addressed to other gods such as Indra, Varuna, Adityas and Soma.

Aditi being the mother of gods, she is urged in the hymns to mediate between men and gods and exert her motherly influence to obtain their help. She is also directly addressed for protection, forgiveness,freedom from sin and abundance. Those who live in the heavens belong to Aditi. So those who desire to go to heaven seek her help and mediation. In some Vedic hymns she is mentioned as Prithvi, the supporter or substratum of alland in some compared to a cow, being the provider of nourishment for all creatures. Adityas are her effulgent solar sons, who are mentioned
to be either eight or twelve in number of whom one is said to be her
husband also. She is also described as the mother of Indra. In the Puranas she is described as the wife of Kashyapa through whom she begot Vamana, an incarnation of Vishnu.
From: Aditi, Mother of the Gods

Aditi, is called the free one, because in Sanskrit her name means "boundless," and is considered an archaic Mother Goddess, depicted in Hindu, Vedic literature. She represents unlimited space and consciousness, hence infinity or eternity. According to the Rg Veda Aditi is said to be the wife of Kasyapa or of Brahma, and the mother of the Aditya, under whose constraint the universe is made possible; and she also personifies death because she consumes everything. Aditi, therefore, represents a caution already present in the Vedas about contributing the origin of the universe to a personal agent, such as a god. No other consort is mentioned in literature. She is also considered to be the mother of Hari, and other legends have her the mother of Indra. No human physical features of her are drawn, though she is sometimes identified in the guise of a cow. Aditi was believed to be a guardian goddess of prosperity and could free her devotees of problems and clear away obstacles. She does not appear in later Hindu traditions.
From: Aditi
The Goddess of energy, Aditi
Born of the Godhead through vitality,

Mother of all the cosmic forces
Who stands in the heart of every creature,

Is the Self indeed. For this Self is supreme.
Katha Upanishad part 2:7
From: here

Also see:

Aditi * Lajja Gauri (long article)
A prayer to Aditi for help and protection (the Atharva Veda)
Rig Veda: Rig-Veda, Book 10: HYMN CLXXXV. Aditi.
(also search Sacred-Texts Vedas section for more Aditi references)

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