The Symbolic Meaning of Prajapati in the Rig Vedas

In the earliest texts of the Rig Veda, Prajapati was of the most important Gods. As the Brahmans of India began to understand the true nature of consciousness, the symbolic precept of Prajapati became merged into the Trimurti.

Statue of Prajapati/Brahma at the Mariammam Temple, Bangkok, Thailand

In Rig Veda 10 verse 121, Prajapati is described as the primordial force of the Universe that emerges from the “golden germ.” This description bears a direct likeness to the later story of Brahma who emerges from a golden egg.

As I decoded in an earlier article, Brahma represents the mind. He is the conscious thoughts that form in your head. Although the lines are blurred in the depictions of Brahma, the early spiritual symbolism for Prajapati explain the principle in a clearer light.

Prajapati and Brahma

There is no mistaking that Prajapati was removed from later Hindu texts and replaced with Brahma. In later myths, it is ‘Prajapatis’ that are the mind born children of Brahma which, in some accounts, are referenced as the seven great rishis. The seven sages represent the chakra system.

The similarities between the two gods are striking. Brahma is known as the creator of the Universe and the laws of nature.I n ancient scriptures, Prajapati is also referred to as the life-force that pervades the Universe and as he ruler over creation is the god responsible of upholding the dharma of moral principles.

The Hiranyagarbha Sukta in the Rig Veda describes Prajapati as “Creator of the Universe, encompassing all things, including within Himself.” The Manu Smirithi says:

“In the beginning, all this existence was one undifferentiated, unmanifested, identifiable, unarguable and unknown in every way. From this condition arose the Universe through the medium of the Self-Existent Creator.”

That Prajapati is described as the “god of the people,” but a more accurate description is God in man. He is a reflection on the state of consciousness that is possible within us all. Some Christians have identified the similarities between the ancient Hindu god and Jesus.

Just as Christians recognise Jesus sacrificed himself for mankind, Prajapati is also associated with rituals of sacrifice. These rituals identify Prajapati with the god Agni indicating they share similar qualities.

Brahma or prajapati? They are the same!

In ancient scripts, Agni is a fire god and represents the ego, the intermediator between man’s higher and lower conscious. The same qualities are reflected in Prajapati when he becomes the ritual fire.

The element of fire represents are passions and desire, but can also be used for destroying qualities that no longer serve us, and Prajapati is an element of our consciousness.

The subconscious mind

Given Prajapati is initially depicted as a Supreme god, we can deduce he represents higher consciousness. He is the god that man can become by diligently carrying out his Dharma, doing the right things in life, in other words what you have to do in each moment.

However, the deity is also associated with animals and the male sex organ. In esoteric wisdom, animals are also used to represents all-pervading consciousness depending on the animal.

When Prajapati is a bird, he represents higher-self, a tortoise is recognised with patience and the reptilian mind, and goats, bulls, cows, oxen and other cattle are the base conscious – our animal instincts. The reptilian mind feeds our need for survival; food, sex and entertainment.

Thus we find the two opposites of human consciousness – our higher-self and our lower-self, and everything in between on the scale of polarity.

Essentially, you are an aspect of Prajapati at any given moment and you have to making decision about what you have to do to fulfil your dharma. Decisions can be difficult, but when you learn to still the mind and listen to the messages from your higher self, you will always know what to do.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s