The Saptarishis, meaning ‘seven sages’, are the seven rishis who are extolled in Hindu mythology. Due to their yogic powers and powers of penance, they are said to have attained semi-immortal status— they have an extremely long life span. It is said that Adiyogi (Lord Shiva) taught yoga to the saptarishis so they could pass along the knowledge and tradition to humanity.
They were born from the mind of Brahma, the Creator, and continue to guide the human race through the four yugas. The saptarishis are truly enlightened beings, having understood the meaning of Brahman (the Divine, Consciousness). The Saptarishis of the current manvantara (the current four yuga cycle) are:
- Gautama Maharishi
All the Saptarishi are Brahmarishis which suggests that they had complete understanding of meaning of Brahman. These great “Brahmarishi’s” were born divinely and appointed by Lord Brahma. Brahmarishis hold such power that they can defeating any weapon on earth, can forecast the longer term, and are not be influenced by the circle of life and death. Maharishi means ‘great sage’ in Sanskrit and refers to at least one who has greatly expanded and refined senses. Their pineal eye is totally open and their intuition is employed to its fullest capacity. Their attention and focus encompass the whole universe and yet they will still maintain incredibly precise detail in actions and thoughts. The new Saptarishi’s take the responsibility from the old Saptarishi’s at the top of Manvantar. These Saptarishi’s are very best rank over “Devatas” whose classifications are as follow which includes Rajarishi (Royal Sage, means king who is additionally a sage) and MahaRishi.
Traditionally, Hinduism is called Sanatana Dharma, or the Eternal Truth. And indeed its philosophy can be universally applied as it does not require belief in one specific form of Divine or adherence to a prescribed set of rules. The ultimate goal is freedom from the cycle of birth and death, or moksha, which can be universally achieved regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation or gender. No one is born saved or condemned, but rather earns the fruit of their actions, words, and thoughts, or karma, and advances spiritually by acting in accordance with dharma, or righteousness.
Significance of Gotra
Our ancestral lineage, also known as Gotras, relates on to the Saptarishi. A Gotra may be a lineage or clan assigned to everyone in Sanatan Dharma at birth where in most cases, the system is paternal and the Gotra assigned is that of the person’s father. The term Gotra being consistent with Hindu tradition which employed just for the lineages of Brahmin, Kshatriya, and Vysya families. Hence, the kid is given a specific Gotra in reference to the actual clan of Saptarishi they belong to.
The role of Saptharishi
This Great Saptarishi’s life period is known as Manvantar (306,720,000 Earth Years) serving as representative of their father Brahma. The Sapta Rishi as per “Shatapatha Brahmana and Brihadaranyaka Upanishad” are Atri, Bharadvaj, Gautama, Jamadagni, Kashyapa, Vashista and Vishwamitra. As per” Krishna Yajurveda” Saptarshi are Angiras, Atri, Bhrigu, Gautama, Kashyapa, Kutsa and Vashista. Saptarishi included in “Brihat Samhita” is Saptarishi -Marichi, Vashista, Angiras, Atri, Pulastya, Pulaha and Kratu. The present Manvantara is the seventh one and is known as Vaivasvata Manvantara after its ruler Vaivasvata Manu. According to the Vishnu Purana, Vaivasvata Manu who is also called as Sraddhadeva or Satyavrata.
The Saptarishis being the most enlightened beings and are considered to be greater than even Devas. Their knowledge has been passed on through generations and all Vedic and post-Vedic scriptures can be attributed to them and their family of sons and students from these Rishis Gotras are derived. In honour of Saptarishi’s Rishi Panchami is celebrated which falls on the fifth day of Shukla Paksha in Bhadrapada month.