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Contentment – Tripti In Hinduism

The term ‘tripti’ is derived from the root ‘trp’ (to become satisfied, to be pleased or contented) with the suffix ‘ktin’, and hence primarily it denotes satisfaction or contentment in Hinduism. The Vedic lexicon Nighanu (I.12.34) records the term ‘tripti’ as a synonym of water, and the commentator Devaraja Yajvan derives the word from the root ‘trip’ (to send).

In the etymological sense of water, it means the gods are satisfied with jalatarpana (prayers with offering water to the deity) and ‘tripyanti hi devatastena tarpitah, tripyanti tena pitena pranina iti va’ (all living beings content by drinking water). But the source of this etymology is found in Atharva Veda, where the verbal root and noun of the same concept are used in juxtaposition (sa dataram triptya tarpayati, IX.5.9)

Amarakosha (II.9.56) records three synonyms of the term denoting satisfaction: tripti, sauhitya and tarpanam. Gaudapada Karika (I.4) shows three stages of satisfaction – partial, half and full (tridha triptim nibodhata). In the Upanishads, a number of references are found on tripti related to progeny, rain food, etc. (triptim tripyati prajaya, Chandogya Upanishad V.219.2; triptiriti vrishau, Taittiriya Upanishad III.10.2).

Tripti is a temporal manner. Even Arjuna is not satiated with the nectar-like speech of Sri Krishna (triptir hi srnvato nasty me amrtam, the Bhagavad Gita X.18; the same text also records nagnistripyati kasanam; atmatripta, III.17, etc.)

For the satisfaction of manes or ancestors, Manu prescribes offerings of different kinds of sacrificial food, like for one month with sesame grains, etc. (Manusmriti III.266-278). Parmatama fixes the food for their satisfaction at a proper time (kshudhitasya triptyai pradishakala paramesvarena, Raghuvamsa II.39). Generally, people get satisfied with wealth (ko na tripyati vittena, Hitopadesha II.133).

So tripti is the base of happiness. To get the highest satisfaction of any enjoyment leads a being to expect that type of pleasure by which one is contended, and it shows the way or paramatripti (permanent satisfaction).