Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online

Get access

Sacred Threads
(2,217 words)

Threads have great symbolic value in Hindu traditions not only as material objects used in ritual but also metaphorically as can be seen in the case of the terms guṇa and sūtra, which both literally mean thread or cord. While guṇa is the term used for the three basic material constituents and the material cause of creation (prakṛti) in Sāṃkhya philosophy, sūtra designates the authoritative guidelines and manuals of the Śāstras (authoritat…

Cite this page
Zotter, Christof, “Sacred Threads”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 19 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

▲   Back to top   ▲