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This article is about Kaśyapa, a Hindu sage. For the disciple of the Buddha, see Mahākāśyapa. For information on the early Buddha, see Kassapa Buddha.
Devanagari कश्यप
Sanskrit Transliteration kaśyapa
Affiliation rishis
Consort see "wives of Kashyapa" below

Kashyapa (Sanskrit कश्यप kaśyapa) was an ancient sage (rishi), who is one of the Saptarishis in the present Manvantara: others being Atri, Vashistha, Vishvamitra, Jamadagni, Bharadwaja, Gautama.[1]

The seven great Rishis or saptarshis of the first manvantara are Marichi, Atri, Angiras, Pulaha, Kratu, Pulastya, and Vashishtha. In other manvantara there are other sapta-rshi. In the present manvantara the seven are Kashyapa, Atri, Vashishtha, Vishvamitra, Jamadagni, Bharadvaj. To the Rishi the Vedas were revealed. Vyasa taught the Rigveda so revealed to Paila, the Yajurveda to Vaishampayana, the Samaveda to Jaimini, Atharvaveda to Samantu, and Itihasa and Purana to Suta. The three chief classes of Rishi are the Brah-marshi, born of the mind of Brahma, the Devarshi of lower rank, and Rajarshi or Kings who became Rishis through their knowledge and austerities, such as Janaka, Ritaparna, etc. Thc Shrutarshi are makers of Shastras, as Sushruta. The Kandarshi are of the Karmakanda, such as Jaimini.

He was also the author of the treatise Kashyapa Samhita, or Jivakiya Tantra, which is considered a classical reference book on Ayurveda especially in the fields of Ayurvedic pediatrics, gynecology and obstetrics.[2]

It can be safely assumed that there were many Kashyapas and the name indicates a status and not just one individual.

Wives of Kashyapa[edit]

The Prajapati Daksha gave his thirteen daughters (Aditi, Diti, Kadru, Danu, Arishta, Surasa, Surabhi, Vinata, Tamra, Krodhavasha, Idā, Vishva and Muni[3] in marriage to Kashyapa.[4]

Kashyapa is a manasaputra (wish-born-son) of Lord Brahma. However, according to [Rama:1.70.20], he is the grand son of Lord Brahma, being the son of Marichi, a wish-born son of Lord Brahma. Kashyapa had many wives, most of them the daughters of Daksha prajapathi. His wives (who are daughters of Daksha) are : Aditi mother of the Devas, Diti the mother of the Asuras, Arishta, the mother of the Gandharvas, Kadru, the mother of the Nagas (snakes), Vinata the mother of Aruna(Charioter of Lord SUN Chariot-time right before surnrise) and Garuda, Danu the mother of the Danavas (who are generally considered part of the Asuras), Kalaka the mother of the monster Kalkanja, Khasa, the mother of the Yakshas, Krodhavasa the mother of the Pishachas (flesh eating monsters), Muni the mother of Maumeya, Puloma the mother of the monster Pauloma, Somathi the mother of Sumathi (who married Sagara, the sea).

In addition to the daughters of Daksha he also married Syeni who had a son (a great bird) named Jatayu, and Unmathi who had a son (also a great bird) called Sampati. Vali and Sugreeva are also said to be the sons of Kashyapa. He also had a wife named Surabhi, who gave birth to the Rudras and a wife named Rohini, who gave birth to the cattle.

Children of Kashyapa[edit]

Main article: Suryavansha

Kashyapa was the father of the devas, asuras, nāgas and all of humanity. He married Aditi, with whom he fathered Agni, the Adityas, and most importantly Lord Vishnu took his fifth Avatar as Vamana, the son of Aditi, in the seventh Manvantara.[5] With his second wife, Diti, he begot the Daityas. Diti and Aditi were daughters of King Daksha Prajapati and sisters to Sati, Shiva's consort. Kashyapa received the earth, obtained by Parashurama's conquest of King Kartavirya Arjuna and henceforth, earth came to be known as "Kashyapai".

In the family line of Kashyapa, along with him there are two more discoverers of Mantras: his sons Avatsara and Asita. Two sons of Avatsara, Nidhruva and Rebha, are also Mantra-seers. In the Manvantara period named 'Svarochisha', Kashyapa was one of the seven sages (saptarishi) for that manvantara.

The Indian valley of Kashmir in the Himalayas is named after him.

Kashyapa in Sikhism[edit]

In Brahm Avtar composition present in Dasam Granth, Second Scripture of Sikhs, Guru Gobind Singh mentioned Rishi Kashyapa, as second avtar of Brahma.[9] According to him, Rishi Kashyapa had great knowledge of Vedas and interpreted it very thoughtfully to whole world which bring them internal relief.[10] He married with four wives, Banita, Kadru, Diti and Aditi and have many children out of them some remain religious (Deities) and other became irreligious (Demons).[11]

Kashyapa and Kashmir[edit]

The Valley of Kashmir got its name from Kashyapa Rishi.[12] According to the Vedic Knowledge, the Kashmir valley was a vast lake called Satisaras, named after Sati or Parvati the consort of Shiva. The lake was inhabited by the demon Jalodbhav. The Nilamat Puran of the 7th century mentions the region being inhabited by two tribes — the Nagas and the Pisachas. The lake was drained off by leader of the Nagas called Ananta (Anantnag region of Kashmir is named after him) to capture and kill the demon. Ananta later names the valley as Kashyapa-mira after his father Kashyapa. Kalhana in Rajatarangini (The River of Kings) also mentions Prajapati Kashyapa killing Jalodbhava with the help of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The lake was then drained and comes to be known as Kash-mira after the Rishi Kashyapa.[13]


  1. ^ Inhabitants of the Worlds Mahanirvana Tantra, translated by Arthur Avalon, (Sir John Woodroffe), 1913, Introduction and Preface.
  2. ^ Q7 indianmedicine.nic.in. Q 7. The main classical texts for reference of Ayurvedic principles include Charak Samhita, Susrut Samhita, Astang Hridaya, Sharangdhar Samhita, Madhav Nidan, Kashyapa Samhita, Bhavprakash, and Bhaisajya Ratnavali, etc.
  3. ^ a b c Vishnu Purana: Book I, Chapter XV The Vishnu Purana, translated by Horace Hayman Wilson, 1840. p. 112. The daughters of Daksha who were married to Kaśyap were Aditi, Diti, Danu, Arisjht́á, Surasá, Surabhi, Vinatá, Támrá, Krodhavaśá, Id́á, Khasá, Kadru, and Muni 19; whose progeny I will describe to you...Vishńu, Śakra, Áryaman, Dhútí, Twáshtri, Púshan, Vivaswat, Savitri, Mitra, Varuńa, Anśa, and Bhaga
  4. ^ Saklani, Dinesh Prasad (1998). Ancient Communities of Himalayas. Indus Publishing Co, New Delhi. p. 74. ISBN 978-81-7387090-3. 
  5. ^ Account of the several Manus and Manwantaras Vishnu Purana, translated by Horace Hayman Wilson, 1840, Book III: Chapter I. 265:22, Vishńu, at the request of the deities, was born as a dwarf, Vámana, the son of Adití by Kaśyap; who, applying to Bali for alms, was promised by the prince whatever he might demand, notwithstanding Śukra, the preceptor of the Daityas, apprised him whom he had to deal with. The dwarf demanded as much space as he could step over at three steps; and upon the assent of Bali, enlarged himself to such dimensions as to stride over the three worlds. Being worshipped however by Bali and his ancestor Prahláda, he conceded to them the sovereignty of Pátála.
  6. ^ Lineage of Kashyapa Valmiki Ramayana, Ayodhya Kanda in Prose Sarga 110.
  7. ^ Birth of Garuda The Mahabharata translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguli (1883-1896], Book 1: Adi Parva: Astika Parva: Section XXXI. p. 110.
  8. ^ Valmiki Ramayan 7.12
  9. ^ Dasam Granth, Dr. SS Kapoor
  10. ^ Line 8, Description of Kashyapa the second incarnation of Brahma, in Bachittar Natak.
  11. ^ Line 7, Description of Kashyapa the second incarnation of Brahma, in Bachittar Natak.
  12. ^ Valentine, Simon Ross (2008). Islam and Ahmediyya Jamat: History, belief, Practice. Hurst Publishers Ltd. p. 13. ISBN 978-1-85065-916-7. 
  13. ^ Kaw, M.K. (2004). Kashmir and its People: Studies in evolution of Kashmiri Society. A.P.H. Publishing Corporation. p. 6. ISBN 81-7648-537-3. 

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