Matsya protecting the Manu and the seven sages at the time of the last pralaya

Pralaya (Sanskrit), in Hindu cosmology, is an aeonic term for Dissolution, which specifies different periods of time during which a non-activity situation persists, as per different formats or contexts. The word Mahapralaya stands for Great Dissolution. During each pralaya, the lower ten realms (loka) are destroyed,[1] while the higher four realms, including Satya-loka, Tapa-loka, Jana-loka, and Mahar-loka are preserved. During each Mahapralaya, all 14 realms are destroyed.

In the Samkhya philosophy, one of the six schools of classical Indian philosophy, Pralaya means "non-existence", a state of matter achieved when the three gunas (principles of matter) are in perfect balance. The word pra-laya comes from Sanskrit meaning 'dissolution' or by extension 'reabsorption, destruction, annihilation or death'.

Pralaya in popular culture

The word pralaya appears in the Cyclops chapter of James Joyce's epic novel Ulysses.

"Pralaya" appears in the Persona series of games (specifically Persona 3 and Persona 4) as an attack. While it can be inherited to other Personae, its original user is "Shiva", a Persona based on the Hindu deity of the same name.

Pralaya is also the name of an antagonist in the DC Comics series Justice League Dark who appears in the series' final arc, threatening to destroy the fictional multiverse.

Pralaya is an otter-like alien wizard who is sometimes overshadowed by the Lone Power in Diane Duane's Young Wizards novel, The Wizard's Dilemma.

The Swedish metal band, Dissection, references "Mahapralaya" in their song, "Maha Kali".

See also


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