A Light From Within Yoga Course Sanskrit Glossary

Sanskrit Glossary

philosophy • ethics • life

A

a
non
abhaya
freedom from fear
abhinivesa
possessiveness
abhyasa
steady effort
acharya
a religious teacher
adhah
down
adhara
a support
adharma
breach of duty
adhibhuta
the principle of objective existence
adhidaiva
the principle of subjective existence
adhikari
competent candidate
adhimatra
superior
adhimatratama
the highest, the supreme one
adhisthana
seat, abode
adhiyajna
the principle of sacrifice,incarnation
adho-mukha
face downwards

adho mukha svanasana
the dog stretch posture
adhyasa
a case of mistaken identity
adhyatma
the principle of self
adrishta
the unseen (e.g. actions ofinvisible entities)
adisvara
the primeval lord, a name of Shiva
bhu
land
bhudana
the donation of land
bhuja
arm or shoulder
bhujanga
snake
bhujangasana
the cobra posture
bhujasana
the arm posture
bhumi
the object of meditation
bhumikatva
firm ground
bhuta
a ghost, an element
bija
seed
bindu
drop or point
bodhi
supreme knowledge
Brahma
the creator
Brahmins
the highest, priestly caste
brahmacharya
control of sexual impulses
brahmacharyasana
the posterior stretch posture
brahmadvara
the door where kundalini enters the spine
brahmanda-prana
cosmic breath
Buddha
Buddha
buddhi
wisdom, reason

C

chakra
a wheel or vortex
chakra-bandha
the binding which seals all of the
chakras
gomukhasana the cow-faced posture
gorakshasana
the cowherd posture
gotra
family, race
granthi
a knot, obstruction in the chitrini
gu
darkness
gulma
the spleen
guna
a quality of nature
gup
guard, hide
guptasana
the hidden posture
guru
a spiritual teacher, heavy,important

H

ha
the sun
Hakini
the goddess in ajna
hala
a plough
halasana
the plough posture
hamasana
the altered peacock posture
hamsa
a swan
Hanuman
a monkey chief, son of Anjana and Vayu
hanumanasana
the splits
hasta
the hand
hasta padangusthasana
the hand-to-big-toe posture
hatha
force, against one’s will
hatha-yoga
union with the supreme via discipline
khechari
mudra where the tongue is inserted in the upper cavity
khyati
an outlook of knowledge
kleshas
the five sources of trouble and suffering
kona
an angle
koshas
bodies or sheaths
krauncha
a heron
krikara
one of the vital airs, causes coughing and sneezing
Krishna
the eighth incarnation of vishnu
krishnasana
the Krishna posture
kriya
cleaning
krounchasana
the heron posture
Krttikas
the Pleiades
kshatriyas
the caste of princes and warriors
kshipta
neglected or distracted
kukutasana
the cockerel posture
kumbha
a pot
kumbhaka
holding the breath
kunda
starting place of kundalini
kundala
coil of rope
kundalini
a coiled female snake, the latent energy at the base of the spine
kurma
a tortoise, one of the vital airs-controls blinking
kurmasana
the tortoise (leg-lock) posture
kutichaka
the hut-builder

N

nabhipedasana
the upward ankle-twist posture
nada
an internal sound
nadi
a channel within the subtle body
nadi-shodhana
the purification of the nadis
naga
the vital air that causes burping
naishkaramya karma
actionless action
nakra
a crocodile
namah
a salute
nara
a man
Narasimha
the man-lion, fourth incarnation of Vishnu
Narayana
the supporter of life – Vishnu
Nataraja
Lord of the dancers, a name of Shiva
natarajasana
the Lord of the Dance posture
nauli
an abdominal exercise (lauliki)
nava
a boat
navasana
the boat posture
neti
not so
neti-yoga
cleansing of the nostrils
niddhyasana
meditation and contemplation

O

ojas
concentrated psychic power

R

raga
anger, passion
raja
a ruler, king
raja-yoga
the yoga of mastery over the mind
rajas
mobility
Rakini
the goddess in svadhishthana
Rama
the seventh incarnation of Vishnu
rambha
plantain
Ravana
a demon king from Lanka who abducted the wife of Rama
rechaka
outbreathing
retus
semen
ru
light
Rudra
a form of Shiva
rupa
a form or body

S

Sadashiva
a form of Shiva
sadhaka
an aspirant, seeker
sadhana
practice, a quest
sah
he, that
sahaja
the karma to which one is born
sahasrara
the thousand-petalled lotus within the cerebral cavity
shrivatsa
the curl on Vishnu’s breast
shuddha
clean, pure
shvana
a dog
shvasa
inspiration
svasa-prashvasa
heaving and sighing
siddha
a prophet or adept
siddhasana
the adept’s posture
siddhi
a psychic (or occult) power
simha
a lion
simhasana
the lion posture
sirsangusthasana
the deep lunge posture
sirsasana
the headstand posture
Sita
the wife of Rama
Skanda
a name of Kartikeya, god of war
sodhana
purification
steya
robbery
sthirata
steadiness
sthiti
stability
sthula-sharira
the dense body
styana
sloth
sudras
the caste of servants and labourers
sukha
happiness
sukhasana
the easy posture
sukshma-sharira
the astral body
sumanasya
benevolence utkatasana the the hunkering posture uttana an intense stretch utthita
stretched
utthita eka pada sirsasana the balancing leg-behind-head
posture
utthita kurmasana
the balancing tortoise posture
utthita lingamasana
the balancing on the phallus
posture
utthita padangusthasana the balancing big toe posture
utthita parsvakonasana
the stretched lateral angle
posture
utthita paschimottanasana the balancing back-stretching

V

vacha
speech
vaikuntha
Vishnu
vairagya
uncolouredness, not desiring physical objects
vaisesika
one of the schools of Indian philosophy
vaisyas
the caste of merchants and professionals
vajra
one of the channels in the spine,a thunderbolt, diamond
vajrasana
the thunderbolt posture
vajroli
the thunderbolt contraction
vakra
bent
vakrasana
the curved posture
valakhilya
a class of tiny entities, about the size of a thumb
aditi
the mother of the gods
aditya
son of aditi
advaita
non-duality of the universal spirit
advasana
the prone posture
agama
proof of the trustworthiness of a source of knowledge
aham
I
ahamkara
tendency to identify oneself with external phenomena, ‘the I-maker’
ahimsa
non-violence
aishvarya
desire for power
ajapa
involuntary repetition (as with a mantra)
ajna
command
akarna
towards the ear
akarna dhanurasana
the shooting bow posture
akasha
ether
akrodha
freedom from anger
alabhdha-bhumikatva
the feeling that it is impossible to see reality
alamba
support
alasya
idleness
amanaska
the mind free from desire
amrita
the elixir of immortality
anahata
unbeaten
ananda
bliss
chakrasana
the wheel posture
chandra
the moon
chatur
four
chela
a pupil
chit
pure consciousness
chitrini
a fine cord within the spine
chitta
mind-stuff, the lower parts of mind – such as memory
chitta-vikshepa
confusion, distraction
chitta-vritti
a mode of behaviour
crore
ten million

D

Dadhicha
a sage who gave his bones to the gods, from which was fashioned the thunderbolt which slew Vrita
Daitya
a demon son of Diti
dakini
the goddess in muladhara
Daksa
a lord of created beings
daksina
the right sidev
dama
control of the body and senses
damaniv
a layer within a nadi allowing for the passage of energy
dana
giving
Danava
a demon
danda
a staff
dandasana
the staff posture
darbha
a sweet-smelling dried grass
himsa
violence
Hiranya-kashipu
a demon king, killed by Vishnu

I

ichchha
the will
ida
the channel on the left of the spine
indriya
organ of sense or action
indriya-jaya
mastery of the senses by controlling the desires
Isha
a form of Shiva
ishvara
a supreme being, god
ishvara-pranidhana
attentiveness to god

J

jagrata-avastha
complete awareness of the state of the mind
jalandhara
bandha where the chin rests in the notch between the collar bones
janma
birth, incarnation
janu
the knee
janu sirsasana
the head-knee posture
japa
repetition of a mantra

L

lac
100,000
laghava
lightness
laghu
handsome, small
Lakini
the goddess in manipuraka
Lakshmi
goddess of beauty and luck
lalata
the forehead
Lanka
the kingdon of Ravana, Ceylon
lauliki
a movement of the abdominal muscles and organs
laya
absorption of the mind
laya-yoga
yoga using the latent power of kundalini
lingam
the phallus
lobha
greed
loka
a habitat
lola
swinging
lolasana
the swing posture
loma
hair

M

madhyama
average
maha
mighty

P

pada
part of a book, the foot
padahastasana
the balancing forward bend
padangushtha
the big toe
padasana
the foot above posture
padma
a lotus
Padmanabha
a name of Vishnu
padmasana
the lotus posture
palmyrasana
the palm tree posture
para
beyond, higher
paramatma
the supreme spirit
parangmukhi
facing inwards
Parashurama
sixth incarnation of Vishnu
parigha
a bolt for shutting a gate
parighasana
the locked gate posture
parigraha
hoarding
paripurna
complete, whole
parivartana
revolving
parivrajaka
wanderer
parivritta parshvakonasana
the revolved lateral angle posture
parivritta paschimottanasana
the twisting back-stretching posture
parivritta sirsasana
the twisting head-knee posture
parivritta trikonasana
the revolved triangle posture
sakshatkara
the spirit
sakthi chalini
the nerve-power posture
salabhasana
the locust posture
salamba
supported
salamba sarvangasana
the supported shoulderstand posture
sama
equal, upright
samakonasana
the sideways leg-splits posture
sama-sthiti
standing still
sama-vritti
pranayama where inhalation,exhalation and suspension of breath are of same length
samadhi
where the aspirant is one with the object of his meditation
samana
one of the vital airs, which aids digestion
samasthiti
the upright-sitting posture
sambhava
birth
samkatasana
the dangerous posture
samkhya
one of the schools of Indian philosophy
samkhya yoga
the yoga of science
samshaya
doubt
samskaras
memories
samyama
dharana, dhyana and samadhi taken together
sannyasi
one who has renounced the world
sanjivani
a life-restoring elixir or herb
supta
sleeping
supta baddha padmasana
the supine bound lotus posture
supta janu sirsasana
the supine head-knee posture
supta padangusthasana
the supine big toe posture
supta paschimottanasana
the supine back-stretching posture
supta vajrasana
the supine thunderbolt posture
surya
the sun
surya namaskar
the homage to the sun posture
sushumna
the spinal cord
sushupti-avastha
the state of the mind in dreamless sleep
sutra
a thread
sva
vital force, soul
svadhyaya
education through the study of the divine texts
svapnavastha
the state of the mind in a dream
svarga
heaven
svarupa
one’s true nature
svasamvedana
the understanding of oneself
svastikasana
the prosperous posture

T

tada
a mountain
tamas
darkness, inertia, ignorance vama the left side
vamadevasana
Vamadeva’s posture
Vamana
Vishnu’s fifth incarnation
vamaprakasha
lovely shiningness
vasana
longing
Vasnata
the deity of Spring
vasti
internal cleansing
Vasuki
a name of Shesha
vatayana
a horse
vatayanasana
the horseface posture
vayus
the vital airs
veda
the sacred scriptures of the Hindus
vedana
feelings
vedanta
one of the schools of Indian philosophy
vedas
the sacred scriptures of the Hindus
vibhuti
divine power
vichara
continued thought
vidya
knowledge, science
vijnana
comprehension
vikalpa
imagination, fancy
vikshepa
confusion
vikshipta
mental aggitationAnanta
infinite, a name of Vishnu
anantasana
Ananta’s posture
anga
a limb, or body part
angamejayatva
unsteadiness of the body
angula
a finger
angushtha
the big toe
Anjana
the name of the mother of Hanuman
anjaneyasana
the splits
antahkarana
the mind
antara
within
antaranga
the practices of pranayama and pratyahara
antaratma
the inner self, residing in the heart
anuloma
with the grain, naturally
anumana
an inference
apana
one of the vital airs, controls the elimination of bodily wastes
apara
lower
aparigraha
abstention from greed, nonpossessiveness

B

Bbaddha
caught
baddhahasta sirsasana
the bound hands headstand posture
bandha
binding, a muscular lock
darshama
a visit to a great person,viewpoint or vision
daurmanasya
despair
dehi
the self
deva
a divine being
devadatta
one of the vital airs, which causes yawning
devata
a divine being similar to an angel
deva-dasi
a temple prostitute
devi
a goddess
dhanu
a bow
dhanurasana
the bow posture
dharana
concentration
dharma
the law, duty, way of life
dhasanjaya
a vital air that stays in the body after death, sometimes bloating the corpse
dhenu
a cow
dhirata
strength
dhwani
a resonant sound
dhyana
contemplation
dirgha
long
Diti
mother of the daityas demons
dradhasana
the side relaxation posture
drashta
consciousness, the ‘witness’
dridhata
strength
duhkha
pain, grief
dvesha
hatred
jathara
the stomach jathara parivartanasana the bellyturning posture
jati
circumstances of life to which one is born
jaya
victory
jiva
a creature
jivana
life
jivatma
the individual soul
jnana
knowledge, especially spiritual knowledge
jnanendriya
an organ of knowledge, i.e. the five senses
jyotir dhyana
luminous contemplation
jyotis
inner light

K

kailasa
a Himalayan mountain, home of Shiva
kaivalya
spiritual independence and freedom
kakasana
the crow posture
Kakini
the goddess in anahata
kalabhairavasana
Lord Kalabhairava’s posture
kali-yuga
the current, pleasure-loving age Kama desire for material pleasures, the god of passion
mahabandha/mahamudra
types of mudra
Mahadeva
the great god – Shiva
mahat
cosmic consciousness
maitri
friendliness
maithuna
sacramental intercourse
makara
a crocodile
makarasana
the crocodile posture
mala
a wreath
malasana
the garland posture
man
to think
manana
pondering
manas
the reasoning ability of the mind
manasika
of the mind
mandala
circle
Mandara
mountain used by the gods to stir the cosmic ocean
manduka
a frog
mandukasana
the frog posture
mani
a jewel
manipura
navel
manomani
samadhi
mantra
a prayer or sacred thought
Manu
father of the human race
marga
a path
matsya
a fish
matsyasana
the fish posture
parshva
the side
parshva dhanurasana
the sideways bow posture
parshva halasana
the lateral plough posture
parshva sarvangasana
the sideways shoulderstand posture
parshva sirsasana
the headstand posture
parshvakakasana
the sideways crow posture
parvatasana
the mountain posture
paryanka
a bed
pasasana
the noose posture
pasha
a trap, noose
pashchima
west, the back of the body
pashchimottoanasana
the back-stretching posture
Patanjali
author of the Yoga Sutras
pavanmuktasana
the knee squeeze posture
pida
pain
pincha
the chin, feather
pinda
an embryo
pingala
the channel on the right of the spine
pliha
the spleen
Prahlada
a devotee of Vishnu
sansara
the wheel of reincarnation
santosha
contentment
sara
essence
Sarasvati
goddess of speech and learning
sarva
whole
sarvanga
the whole body
sarvangasana
the shoulderstand posture
sat
reality
sat chit ananda
bliss consciousness
Sati
mother of Kartikeya and Ganapati
sattva
orderliness, the quality of goodness in everything natural
satya
honesty
savasana
the corpse posture
savichara
investigational meditation
savitarka
inspectional meditation
sayanasana
the repose posture
setu
a bridge
setu bandhasana
the bridge posture
shabda
sound, the creative principle
Shakini
the goddess in vishuddha
shakti
female creative power, goddess
shaktichalani
one of the mudras, involves contracting the rectum
shalabha
a locust
shalabhasana
the locust posture
shama
calming the mind
tan
to stretch
tandava
violent dance of Shiva
tanmatras
the five potentials or senses
tantras
treatises on ritual, meditation,discipline, etc.
tap
to burn, shine, suffer
tapas
austerity, purification
tara
crossing over
Taraka
a demon slain by Kartikeya
tat
that
tattva
an element, the twenty-four categories of thatness
tejas
radiant energy, majesty
tirieng
horizontal
tittibha
a firefly
tittibhasana
the firefly posture
tola
a balance
tolangulasana
the balance posture
tolasana
the scales posture
trataka
an exercise to clear the vision
tri
three
trikona
a triangle
trikonasana
the triangle posture
trishna
thirst, desire
Trivikrama
fifth incarnation of Vishnu, who filled the earth, heaven and hell with his three steps (krama)
viloma
against the natural order of things
vipakas
the distressing results of karmas
viparita
reversed, inverted
viparitakarani
the upside-down posture
viparyaya
a mistaken view
vira
brave, a hero
virabhadrasana
the arrow posture
Virancha
name of Brahma
virasana
the hero posture
Virochana
a demon prince
virya
vitality, enthusiasm
vishama-vritti
uneven or strained movement whilst breathing
vishesha
particular
Vishnu
the preserver of life
vishudda
pure
vitarka
discernment
viveka
discrimination
vriksha
a tree
vrikshasana
the tree posture
vrishchika
a scorpion
vrishchikasana
the scorpion posture
vrit
to turn
vritti
a vortex, an idea, behaviour
vyadhi
illnessbandha padmasana
the bound lotus posture
baka
a wading bird, the crane
Bali
a demon king
basti
method for cleaning the intestines
bhadrasana
the auspicious posture
bhagavad gita
the dialogues between Krishna and Arjuna
bhagavan
holy
Bhairava
terrible, one of the forms of Shiva
bhajana
a hymn
bhakti
devotion, worship
bhastrika
the bellows breath
bhati
light
bhavana
concentration
bhaya
fear
bheda
a division
bhedana
breaking through, piercing
bheka
a frog
bherunda
terrible
bherundasana
the formidable posture
bhoga
enjoyment
bhoktir
one who enjoys
bhramara
a large bee
bhramari
the bee breath
bhranti-darshana
a delusion
dvi
two, both
dvi-pada
two feet

E

eka
one, single
eka pada hastasana
the one leg posture
eka pada kakasana
the one leg crow posture
eka pada sirsasana
the leg-behind-head posture
ekgara
one-pointed
ekamevadvitiyam
one without a second

G

gana
Shiva’s attendants
Ganapati
god of luck and wisdom
ganda
the cheek
garbha-pinda
an embryo
garbhasana
the foetus posture
garuda
an eagle
garudasana
the eagle posture
ghata
a pot, the body
ghi
clarified butter
go
a cow
gomukha
musical instrument resembling a cow’s face
kama-dhenu
the heavenly cow
kanda
a knot, the place where the three main nadis join
kandasana
the upward ankle-twist posture
kapala
the skull
kapalabhati
a process to clear the sinuses
kapota
a dove
kapotasana
the dove posture
karma
work, action, the law of cause and effect
karmaphala
the result of an action
karma-yoga
unselfish actions
karmendriya
an action organ, e.g. the hands or feet
karnapidasana
the ear-press posture
Kartikeya
the god of war, was reared by the Pleiades
karuna
pity, tenderness
kathanta
howness
katikasana
the front-stretching posture
kaustubha
one of Vishnu’s jewels
kaya
the body
kayika
pertaining to the body
kevala
whole, pure
khandapitasana
the ankle-twist posture
matsyendrasana
the posture of Matsyendra
maya
illusion
mayura
a peacock
mayurasana
the peacock posture
meru-danda
the spinal column
mimansa
one of the schools of Indian philosophy
mirdu
soft, gentle
mirta
a corpse
mirtasana
the corpse posture
moha
infatuation or delusion
moksha
emancipation of the soul from rebirth
mudha
foolish, stupid
mudra
a seal
mudita
delight
mudras
muscular contractions that include the bandhas
mukha
the mouth
mukta
liberated
muktasana
the liberated posture
mukta hasta sirsasana
the freehand headstand posture
mula
root
mulabandhasana
the ankle-twist posture
mulashodhana
cleansing the rectum
murcha
mind-fainting
Prajapati
Lord of created beings
prajna
wisdom
prakasha
shining, clear
prakriti
eternal nature
pramada
indifference
pramana
authority, an ideal
prana
breath, energy, life
pranava
another name for aum
prana-vayu
a vital air that moves in the chest
pranayama
control of the breath
pranidhana
dedication
prasarita
stretched out
prasarita padottanasana
the spread legs posture
prashvasa
expiration
pratiloma
going against the grain
pratyahara
control of the senses
pratyaksha
direct evidence
punarjanman
rebirth
punya
virtue, merit, good
purakha
inhalation
purnata
perfection
purusha
the spirit or soul
purvottana
the front of the body
purvottanasana
the front-stretching posture
shambhavi
related to Shiva
shambhavi mudra
gazing between ones eyes
Shambhu
a name of Shiva
shan
six
Shanmukha
with six mouths, a name of Kartikeya
shantih
peace
sharira
a body
shaucha
mental and bodily cleanliness
shava
a corpse
shavasana
the corpse posture
shayana
a bed
shesha
the serpent of eternity, having one thousand heads
shirsha
the head
shirshasana
the head-stand posture
shishya
the pupil of a guru
Shita
cold
Shiva
the destroyer
shmrti
memory
shodana
purification
shoka
anguish
shraddha
faith and trust
shravana
the act of listening to the doctrines

U

ubhaya
both
ubhaya padangusthasana
the buttocks balance posture
udana
the vital air controlling the intake of food and air
uddiyana
a fetter or binding involving the raising of the diaphragm
ugra
powerful, noble
ugrasana
the posterior stretch posture
ullola
a large wave
Uma
Shiva’s wife, Parvati
unmani
samadhi
Upanishads
the philosophical parts of the Vedas. ‘upa’ (near) ‘ni’ (down) sad (to sit) – the act of sitting down by one’s Guru to receive instruction.
upavishtha
seated
upeksha
disregard
urdhra prasarita ekapadasana
balancing forward posture
urdhva
raised
urdhva hastattanasana
the up-stretched arms posture
urdhva-mukha
face upwards
urdhva-retus
a celibate
ushtra
a camel
ushtrasana
the camel posture
utkata
fierce
vyana
one of the vital airs, circulates energy all over the body
vajna
a sacrifice

Y

Yama
the god of death
yamas
the five moral commandments
yantra
a design used in meditation
yastikasana
the stick posture
yoga
union, from ‘yuj’ – to join
yogadandasana
the yogin’s staff posture
yogasana
the anchor posture
yoga-nidra
the sleep of yoga, where the body is resting but the mind is awake
yogi/yogin
one who practices yoga
yoni
vagina, womb, or source
yuga
an age
yuj
to yoke, join, concentrate on
yukta
joined with, one who has attained the communion with the supreme spirit

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