tapas
(tapasya)
   Tapas (heat) or tapasya is a concept of great importance in Hindu practices of austerity. The word refers to the sacred heat that is generated by bodily mortifications and ascetic denial. Tapas confers wondrous powers and abilities upon the YOGI and makes it easier for the adept to break the bonds of attachment to worldly life.
   In a very literal example of tapas, ancient orthodox yogis used to sit surrounded by five fires under the noonday Sun in order to absorb the heat and gain spiritual power. Other ascetics doing tapasya would endure lengthy fasts or extreme bodily mortifications. There is some indication that the notion of tapasya developed within the Brahminical tradition as a result of association with the fires of the Vedic sacrifice.
   Further reading: Walter O. Kaelber, Tapta Marga: Asceticism and Initiation in Vedic India (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1989); Klaus K. Klos-termaier, A Survey of Hinduism (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1990); David M. Knipe, In the Image of Fire: Vedic Experiences of Heat (Delhi: Motilal Banar-sidass, 1975).

Encyclopedia of Hinduism. . 2007.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • tapas —    Tapas are nibbles or snacks eaten with a drink before lunch or dinner. The most common tapas are simple things such as olives, nuts, small portions of cold sausages, serrano (raw cured) ham, potato omelette, vegetable relishes and prawns.… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary Spanish culture

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  • tapas — ► PLURAL NOUN ▪ small Spanish savoury dishes, typically served with drinks at a bar. ORIGIN Spanish, cover, lid (because the dishes were given free with the drink, served on a dish balanced on the glass) …   English terms dictionary

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  • Tapas — Tạ|pas 〈Pl.; span. Kochk.〉 (bes. in Bars angebotene) pikante Vorspeisen, Appetithäppchen * * * Tạpas   [Sanskrit »Glut«, »Hitze«, »Qual«, »Askese«] das, , in der vedischen Kosmogonie die kosmische Bruthitze, durch die das »goldene Weltenei«… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Tapas — Original name in latin Tapas Name in other language Tapas, Tapaz State code PH Continent/City Asia/Manila longitude 11.2613 latitude 122.5364 altitude 43 Population 2340 Date 2012 01 17 …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

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