Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian rbalasub at
Fri Apr 18 02:13:23 UTC 1997

Annette Wilke wrote:

>I am presently working on Divine Names in Hinduism and I am interested in
some informations concerning the topic:
>1) Do also folk deities have (sahasra)nAmAvalis or even nAmastotras? (I
know only a vast number of examples of litanies to the deities of the

I am not sure what you mean by folk deities. But, nAmastotra-s etc are not
restricted to devata-s in the pa.nchAyatana. My copy of the bR^ihatstotra
ratnAkaraH contains ashTottaram-s of the all the planets. There is a
sahasranAma of sarasvatI from the skanda purANa. I have also seen a laxmI
sahasranAma. But, usually, these litanies are on shiva or vishhNu or one of
their popular forms.

>2) Modern gurus often do have litanies with 108 or 1000 names (such as
Chinmaya, Ramana Maharshi, Amma). Is it a modern practice or do you know
litanies to historical saints?

I have seen ashTottaram-s on sha.nkara and vidyAraNya also.

You might want to take a look at:

Medieval Sanskrit literature, [ History of Indian Literature ], by Jan Gonda.
It has a whole section on stotra-s. He talks about sahasranAma-s etc also in
some detail.


More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list