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Shri Shri Ganapati


Om Vam Varunaya Namah

Aditya = Aditi

Seven (or 8 or 12) deities of the heavenly sphere

Aditi the World Mother and Her Offspring


Mitra + Aryaman + Bhaga + Daksha + Ansa + Savita (Surya)

modern rendition of Varuna = riding the makara (sea monster) + whip, rein, or lasso of a water-snake

Varuna modern
  • explanation:

Vocabulary for Aditya

  • belonging to or coming from Aditi, son of Aditi
Name of seven deities of the heavenly sphere (RV)
  • The chief is Varuna, to whom the Name "Aditya" is especially applicable
  • The succeeding five are Mitra, Aryaman, Bhaga, Daksha, Ansa
  • That of the seventh is probably Surya or Savitri ;
As a class of deities they are distinct from the vizve-devAH
  • sometimes their number is supposed to be eight
  • and in the period of the Brahmanas twelve
As representing the sun in the twelve months of the year
  • name of a god in general, especially of Surya (the sun) (RV. AV)
Name of Vishnu in his Vamana or dwarf avatAra, as son of Kasyapa and Aditi
  • The plant Calotropis Gigantea
name of a constellation, the seventh lunar mansion [Punarvasu]
  • relating to the god of the sun

Calotropis Gigantea,the "Crown Flower" blooming in Hawai'i


Sindhi primary deity = Varun Dev = Lal Sai, Uderolal, Jhulelal, Doolhalal + Zinda Pir

Varuna rules earthly waters esp. rivers and oceans; He is attended by Naga; the souls of the drowned revert to Him

What are "Aditi"?

Various scriptures define Aditi variously.

Seven or Eight

In the older texts (Rik Veda, Atharva Veda) Aditi has seven offspring, also called "aditi" in the sense of "son of Aditi".

  • Varuna + Mitra + Aryaman + Bhaga + Daksha + Ansa + Savitri (Surya)

Aditi are called the "leaders" because they move along the events of the world (Earth and its cosmic environment).

"Aditi" = name for the World Mother, a mother of the gods, who is the source of all things which come alive, all forms which are infused with life-force.


In later tales, there are twelve Aditi who correspond to the twelve zodiacal rashi signs.

The Aditi guide the Sun during His annual march through the twelve rashi.

The twelve offspring of Aditi the World Mother are generally named as:

  1. Mitra [friendship, alliance]

  2. Varuna [fate]

  3. Aryaman [chivalry, courage]

  4. Daksha [ritual skill]

  5. Bhaga [the fortunate, credit share]

  6. Amsha Ansa [= "portion", the unfortunate, debit share]

  7. Tvastr [yantra, architecture, balanced designs]

  8. Savitr [mantra, transformative power of sound]

  9. Pushan [wealth, guidance along the spiritual path]

  10. Sakra = Indra [government rules]

  11. Vivasvat [community rules ]

  12. Vishnu [maintainer, bridge between reality and dream]

Across the millennial scope of Sanskrit literature there are, however, a number of variants upon this listing

The Words

  • Singular adjective form = "Aditya". Plural nominal = "Aditi".

When the Sanskrit word gets adopted into other languages (such as English) the host language will often use its native method of pluralizing. Thus the 12 Aditi are usually referred to in English as "Adityas" with the English 's' pluralizer.

  • However the scholarly plural = Aditi, which is both the name of the World Mother and the native -Sanskrit term for more-than-one-Aditya, is used also.

"Scholarly" terms in English show academic prestige. They prove that the speaker/writer is grammatically literate enough in a foreign language to use the native morphology without converting the foreign word into English morphology.

For example,"datum" = the singular form of "data" but datum is used only in academic circles where people read Latin. In normal English usage, "data" is a mass noun which has the same form for singular and plural, like "deer" or "pair".

Similarly, the English speaker who is adequately educated in classical Greek will use the Greek singular form "phenomenon" to display their knowledge, despite the fact that the word "phenomena" was adopted into mainstream English centuries ago as a mass noun, and normalized to a morphology which is more natural in English: both singular and plural form ending in "a".

Very few native English speakers are formally educated in Sanskrit grammar, and even those who are are typically in the role of communicating Vedik cultural concepts to speakers of Other Languages. So, in the process of spreading the knowledge, it becomes necessary to apply English morphology to Sanskrit (or Greek, or Latin, or Hebrew) words. And the result is the remarkable plural, "Adityas"!)

In the post-RikVeda view, the Adityas operate in six pairs. They are often represented a "spokes in the wheel of Time" (kala). They are called "governors", "leaders", or "conductors" because they lead the Sun through the 12 rashi stations on His annual journey "around" the Earth.


updated:27 December 2013

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