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33 crore hindu gods names

33 crore hindu gods names

Because of incorrect sanskrit interpretation, a myth has been formed in Hinduism regarding there are 33 crores or 33 million type of gods.

In Brhadaranyaka Upanishad while discussing Brahman, Yajnavalkya is asked how many gods are there. He says that there are three hundred and three and three thousand and three gods. When the question is repeated? He says, thirty three. When the question is again repeated he says, six. Finally, after several repetitions he says ONE. (Chapter I, hymn 9, verse 1)

The number 33 comes from the number of Vedic gods explained by Yajnavalkya in Brhadaranyaka Upanishad – the eight Vasus, the eleven Rudras, the twelve Adityas, Indra and Prajapati. (Chapter I, hymn 9, verse 2)

They are: 8-Vasu, 11-Rudra, and 12-Aaditya, 1-Indra and 1-Prajaapati.

8. Vasus are ~ Earth, Water, Fire, Air, Ether, Moon, Sun, and Star. They are called Vasus, because they are abode of all that lives, moves or exists. (also mentioned in Mahabharat, 1/66/18)

11. Rudras ~ The ten Pranas (Praana, Apaana, Vyaana, Samaana, Udaana, Naag, Kurma, Krikal, Devadutta and Dhananjaya) i.e. nervauric forces which live in the human body. The eleventh is the human soul. These are called ‘Rudras’ because when they desert the body, it becomes dead and the relations of the deceased, consequently, begin to weep.

Rudra means one who makes a person to weep. { also mentioned in Harivansha 13/51-52})

Five abstractions – Ānanda “bliss”, Vijñāna “knowledge”, Manas “thought”, Prāṇa “breath” or “life”, Vāc “speech”,
Five names of Śiva – Īśāna “ruler”, Tatpuruṣa “that person”, Aghora “not terrible”, Vāmadeva “pleasant god”, Sadyojāta “born at once”
Ātmā “self

12. Adityaas —the twelve months of a year called Adityaas, they cause the lapse of the term of existence of each object or being. (also mentioned in Mahabharat)

Alternatively, they are named as :
Twelve Ādityas (personified deities) – Mitra, Aryaman, Bhaga, Varuṇa, Dakṣa, Aṃśa, Tvāṣṭṛ, Pūṣan, Vivasvat, Savitṛ, Indra (Śakra), Vishnu.

1. Indra which is also known as the (all-pervading) electricity, as it is productive of great force.


1. Prajaapati
, also called the “Yajna” because it benefits mankind by the purification of air, water, rain and vegetables and because it aids the development of various arts, and in it the honor is accorded to the learned and the wise.

The master of these 33 Devatas is the Mahadeva or Ishwar who alone is to be worshipped as per 14th Kanda of Shatpath Brahman.

References for further reading :
1) Wikipedia page on 33 god name [1]
2) VaniSource PDF Linnk. [2]

3) sacred-texts link [3]