What is the meaning of Indra?


There are different meaning of the word Indra is given by Yaska in Nirukta 10.8.

इन्द्र इरां दृणातीति वाँ।
इरां दद्तीति वा।
इरां दधातीति वा ।
इरा दारयतैं इति घा।
इरा धारर्थत इति वा ।
इन्दवे द्रर्वतीति वा ।
इन्दी रमत इति वा ।
इन्धे भूतानीति वा ।
तद्यदेनं प्राणैः समैनैधंस्तदिन्द्रस्येन्द्रत्वैम् ।।
इति विज्ञायैते ।
इदं करणादित्याग्रयणैः ।
इदं दर्शनादित्यौपमन्यवः ।
इन्दतेर्वैश्र्वर्यकर्मणः !
इन्दञ्छत्रूणां दारयितैा वा ।
द्रावयिता वा ।
अादरयिता च यज्वनामं ।
तस्यैषा भवति ॥ ८ ॥

Indra is (so called because) he divides food (irâ + dṛ), or he gives food (irâ + dâ), or he bestows food (irâ + dhâ), or he sends food (irâ + dâraya), or he holds food (irâ + dhâraya), or he runs for the sake of soma (indu + dru), or he takes delight in soma (indu + ram), or he sets beings on fire (√indh). It is known: that because they animated him with vital breaths, that is the characteristic of Indra,” “He is (so called) from doing everything (lit. this), says Agrayana. He is (so called) from seeing everything (idam. + dṛś), says Aupamanyava. Or the word is derived from the verb) id., meaning to be powerful, i.e. being powerful he tears the enemies asunder, or puts them to flight. Or he honours the sacrificers. The following stanza is addressed to him.

Satapatha Brahmana 6:1:1:2 defines Indra as follows:

This same vital air in the midst doubtless is Indra. He, by his power (indriya), kindled those (other) vital airs from the midst; and inasmuch as he kindled (indh), he is the kindler (indha): the kindler 3 indeed,--him they call 'Indra' mystically (esoterically), for the gods love the mystic. They (the vital airs), being kindled, created seven separate persons (purusha).

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