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Often, you will hear this in a yoga class. At the end of a yoga class, the teacher will usually bring the class into a seated position after savasana. Yoga is not a religion, and Anjali mudra should not be seen as the worship of any divine being. The literal translation of namasté (pronounced nah-mah-stay) is "I bow to you. The commercial yoga industry in the United States often uses "namaste" in a way that is almost completely divorced from its use in Hindi. Who's going to shell out big bucks for a HELLO-M-G yoga mat?). "Namaste, B****es.". Over time, "namaha" went from meaning "to bend" to meaning "salutations" or "greetings.". The Definition of Namaste Namaste is an expression of appreciation and respect towards another person, entity or deity. In Indian culture, it is used casually. The gesture Namaste represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra. The practice of yoga reminds us that we are all interconnected. There are a couple of reasons namaste is said in this context. Namaste as an ethical commitment . The Meaning of Namaste Namaste is a Sanskrit word comprised of the root words “namah” and “te”. Most say namaste as a means to thank the teacher or use as an expression of relief upon the ending of the class. The sanskrit word is said at the end of every single yoga class, usually in conjunction with a deep bow, but what exactly does it mean? This is sometimes used as a time for a brief satsang (teaching) or meditation, depending on the type of yoga involved. The's' between the two words is used to join nama and te as described in the Sanskrit language. In modern cultures, however, namaste is taken to a new level of meaning. (Doing so is a matter a personal preference; you will not offend anyone if you choose not to bow or cannot bow all the way to the floor.). But the use and meaning have evolved. Although Anjali mudra is the position you are meant to take when saying "namasté," the intention of placing one's palm together should not be construed as a form of prayer. Along with other aspects of Hindu/Indian culture, the namaste greeting is becoming increasing popular in other parts of the world. Sign up and get started today! It can be considered as a legacy that has been passed down since generations via the holy scriptures – the “Sutras” and is comparable to other sacred texts such as the ‘Quran’ or the ‘Bible’. This is often sung or sounded at the end of each class. A common salutation and valediction in the Hindu culture, namaste literally means, "I bow to you." Namaste, therefore, translates to 'I bow to you' in literal terms. Yoga Poses: An Introduction to Asana Practice, The Secret Power of Yoga Hand Gestures or Mudras, Explore Yoga History Including Its Main Types and Styles of Poses, You Don't Have to Avoid Yoga Inversions If You're on Your Period, The 9 Best Online Exercise Classes of 2020, 8 Yoga Questions You're too Embarrassed to Ask, Garland Pose (Malasana) Is Good For Your Hips and Feet, How 'namaste' entered the english language. I actually just signed up to start my year long journey of a 200 hour yoga teacher training. In the Vedas, namaste mostly occurs as a salutation to a divinity. The reason for this is that there is a belief that suggests that a spark exists in the center of the 4th … From youngsters to elders and from friends, relatives to a stranger, people say Namaste to each other. The gesture Namaste represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra. Answer: The word namaste, pronounced “NUHM-uh-stay,” is a common Hindu/Indian greeting often used in conjunction with a small bow and with the palms of one’s hands placed together, fingers up, in front of the chest.In Indian culture, it is used casually. Even if most Western Europeans and North Americans don't know anything else about South Asia, "they know about yoga, and they know about 'namaste,' " says Rumya Putcha. The literal translation of Namaste in Sanskrit is “to bow.” “I bow to you.” Yet the true meaning of this word, like most words in Sanskrit, runs much deeper than your average greeting. She's an assistant professor of women's studies and music at the University of Georgia. Your teacher may choose to elaborate a bit on the basic meaning of namasté. Namaste in yoga. It is used as a courteous greeting and also as a means of saying "thank you." But that's all it means — hello. IT DRIVES ME BATTY.". Sometimes it's gibberish. The first two syllables come from the word, nama, which translates to, “I bow.”. It also suggests that, as learning and wisdom are exchanged among everyone in the practice, you are also your own teacher. It's ideal to be as relaxed and peaceful as you can before saying namaste to … At its core is the practice of mutual respect and the respect of oneself and one's body. For the first part we have answered, briefly but clearly the meaning of saying “hello” with a deeper consciousness for the momentous presence that inhabits our living time. A lot of words we use today have religious roots, but just like "adios," "inshallah" or "goodbye" (an abbreviation of "God be with ye"), it doesn't have to be that deep. Namasté in Yoga In India, the Sanskrit salutation namasté and its variant namaskar (Hindi for "I bow to the light in you") are used in daily conversation. Writer and podcaster Taz Ahmed said, "EVERY DAMN TIME I DRIVE BY THE YOGA STUDIO ON SUNSET THAT SAYS NAMASTE L.A. The first part of namaste comes from "namaha," a Sanskrit verb that originally meant "to bend." Ⓒ 2020 About, Inc. (Dotdash) — All rights reserved, Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Merriam-Webster. Namaste definition, a conventional Hindu expression on meeting or parting, used by the speaker usually while holding the palms together vertically in front of the bosom. What does Namaste mean? One responder wrote, "I always mute it at the end of white people Yoga videos. On one level, it’s a way to thank the teacher and other students for time spent together for a deeper purpose. Let's not forget the namaste puns and catchphrases: "Nama-stay in bed." I asked South Asians on Twitter to tell me their feelings about seeing namaste in these contexts. But in the U.S., the word has been wrangled out of its context and tossed around to mean whatever people want it to. These include sayings such as "the light in me honors the light in you," or "the teacher in me bows to the teacher in you." It allows the yoga teacher and … When you say, “Namaste” in yoga, you recognize and pay homage to that divine spark which resides deep within all of us. Putcha says that deciding which languages get made fun of is one way society establishes which people and cultures are the norm and which are not. The Meaning & History Of Namaste In Yoga Classes Yoga students and teachers will tell you that namaste translates to “the highest divine light within me honors and bows to the highest divine light within you.” The word is partnered with the gesture … A bunch of folks on Twitter brought it up. And that's just the word on its own. It's often used in more formal situations, like when addressing someone older or someone you don't know well. It unblocks the heart chakra and creates a feeling of peace. What does it mean to say namaste. The oldest part of the Vedic literature comes from what is now Pakistan and the northwestern corner of India. Why Is It Still OK To 'Trash' Poor White People. Yoga is a subject not just limited to postures, but extends beyond to a spiritual discipline and practice. Some yoga websites claim that namaste is " the belief … In yoga classes, it has become traditional for teacher and students to exchange namastés at the end of class as a gesture of mutual respect. The word namaḥ takes the sandhi form namas before the sound te. ( When both words put together it means Salutation to you or I bow to you ). That's according to Madhav Deshpande, a professor emeritus of Sanskrit and linguistics from the University of Michigan. Namaste is typically used at the end of class to seal the practice. The misperception arises from the fact that Anjali mudra is typically described in the West as the "prayer pose." And why does it make so many South Asians feel icky? It is important to understand, however, that even though the gesture is one we associate with Christian, Hindu, and other religious practices, it doesn't hold the same significance in the yogic practices. Overall, in yoga class, the namaste greeting is a symbol of gratitude and respect between the yoga instructor and their students. The meaning of namah, as described by Wikipedia, means “bow” and “reverential salutation or adoration”. Learn what the Sanskrit word really means here. Sometimes everyone will then continue their bow, bending forward from a cross-legged position until their hands or foreheads reach the floor. It's much easier to exaggerate the meaning of a word that sounds foreign. Sara Clark is an EYT 500-hour certified Vinyasa yoga and mindfulness teacher, lululemon Global Yoga Ambassador, model, and writer. As such, the pose is meant to symbolize the honoring and celebration of this moment. Namaste is a Sanskrit word comprised of the root words “namah” and “te.”. At the base level, namasté is a salutation of respect and reverence. Being namaste'ed was one of the ways I learned what being South Asian was going to mean for my life. NAMASTE is namah नम: + te ते Namah is from नम् root word which means to bow , to salute ( as a mark of respect ). Our email series can get you ready to roll out the mat. Te ते means to you , for you . It creates a union of spirits. On a more profound level, namaste signifies one soul recognizing and honoring the holiness of another. When it comes to yoga, it's a different story. The sound is in three parts: awe – ooo … a Studio? Then come the jokes. The spiritual meaning of Namaste essentially is the pouring of the sense of togetherness, oneness, and love, acceptance, and gratitude from one mind to the other mind or the environment. They respond in kind, bowing their heads with their palms pressed together in Anjali mudra at the heart or the third eye (middle of the forehead). In yoga classes, it has become traditional for teacher and students to exchange namastés at the end of class as a gesture of mutual respect. 75 Responses to "Yoga and Christianity: The Meaning of Namaste" ElizabethJ says: 09.01.11 at 8:29 am Lea, thank you for this post. Thank you, {{form.email}}, for signing up. Unfortunately, Western culture has lost its understanding of the meaning through using “namaste” as a slogan on yoga clothing with phrases like, “namaste in bed.” The spiritual meaning of Namaste refers to connecting to the Divine spirit or light in … Often, we hear the yoga teacher say the Hindu expression “Namaste”, accompanied by a greeting. But that's not the only place you'll encounter "namaste." Namaskar or Namaskara, on the other hand, is derived from the Sanskrit words Namah and skara. These sorts of extended interpretations acknowledge that, although you came to learn from the teacher, the teacher has also learned something through sharing the time with you. This is why Namaste is commonly translated as “the light in me bows to the same light within you.”. So, how did this word filter into so many different pieces of American culture? Yoga teachers all over the place teach these overblown interpretations of the word to try to ground their classes in a sense of authenticity, or even holiness. There are hundreds of other languages spoken in the region — as a Sri Lankan Tamil, namaste isn't really a word in my family's language. It can be used as a hello greeting and even as a goodbye, so you might say Namaste upon meeting someone, or before parting ways. Namaste. The meaning of namaste stands for “facilitating to someone”, “deep respect for someone”, “warmly welcome”, “Bow down in front of someone.” The meaning of Namaste in India. It is a salutation of respect and the `` te '' in namaste namaste meaning in yoga `` seal. recognition. 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