(4,049 words)

The word puruṣa has a variety of meanings ranging from man (male), human being, person, and embodied immortal self to presiding deity, creator, and highest, transcendent being. In contrast to other terms used for “immortal self” (such as ātman ) or cause of creation (such as brahman ), the term puruṣa is less abstract and connected to notions of corporeality and personhood as well as of form (rūpa) and measurement. …

Cite this page
Angelika Malinar, “Puruṣa”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Edited by: Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 24 February 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2212-5019_beh_COM_2050250>
First published online: 2012

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