From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Tripurā literally means ‘one endowed with three bodies or forms’.

Significance of Goddess Tripurā[edit]

Tripurā is the most popular form of the Mother-goddess associated with the creation, sustenance and destruction of the world. She is known as Tripurā because she has a threefold form of:

  1. Bindu - primeval ‘drop’
  2. Bīja - primordial ‘seed’
  3. Nāda - original sound-vibration

The triangle is her symbol.

Other Characteristics[edit]

  • She is the totality of the three guṇas and their operation:
  1. Sattva
  2. Rajas
  3. Tamas
  • She is sometimes included among the ten goddesses called Daśamahāvidyās and identified with Tripurasundarī.
  • She is the totality of Vāṇī (Sarasvatī), Ramā (Lakṣmī) and Rudrāṇī (Pārvatī) as also of Brahma, Viṣṇu and Maheśvara (Śiva).

Iconographic Representation[edit]

Her iconographic description given in the work Tripurārahasya is as follows:

  • She has twelve arms carrying the characteristic weapons of all the three deities.
  • She has ten faces with three eyes each.
  • She is extremely beautiful.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

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