Lord Brahma, the infinite, is the source of all space, time, causation, names and forms.
Theologically, he is the single letter (eka aksharam) AUM, and the uncreated creator (svayambhu), the self-born first person.
Philosophically, he is the first manifestation of one's existence (ahankara).
Cosmologically, he is hiranya garbha (golden embryo), the ball of fire, from which the universe develops. He is Prajapati, since all creatures are his progeny. He is:
|Lokesha||- master of the universe|
|Viswakarma||- architect of the world|
Mythologically, Brahma springs from Kamala (lotus), from the nabhi (navel) of Vishnu. His consort Saraswati manifested out of him and all creatures of the world resulted from their union.
Origin of Brahma
Brahma manifested to dispel the darkness enveloping universe. He created water and deposited a seed that became a golden egg. He divided the egg into two parts to construct the heaven and earth, and created the tenPrajapatis, mind-born sons, who completed the work of creation.
Representations of Brahma
Brahma's icon has four heads (chatur mukha brahma) representing the:
- Four Vedas - (Rig, Yajur, Sama, Atharva) - knowledge
- Four Yugas - (krita, treta, dwapara, kali) - epochs of time
- Four Varnas - (brahmana, kshatriya, vaisya, sudra) - working class
The four arms holding up different objects
- Akshamala (rosary) - denoting time
- Kurcha (kusha grass), sruk (ladle), sruva (spoon) - denoting systems of sacrifice
- Kamandala (water pot) - denoting water and
- Pustaka (book) - denoting knowledge
Hand postures (mudras) are protector (abhaya) and giver of boons (varada).
Brahma also rides a chariot drawn by seven swans - representing the seven worlds.