Whether you practise yoga or not, you have certainly heard about the famous the Sanskrit word Namaste. However, what does namaste mean?
Maybe some people will tell you Namaste literally means « thank you » in Sanskrit. It’s not uncommon to hear that, and it’s a fairly common mistake. That is why today we will focus on the Namaste origin and thee namaste posture.
The origins of this word
In fact, this word is simply used to greet one another. Appeared in Indian culture a very long time ago, it is used to say hello/goodbye, even in other countries like Nepal. We can also find its more formal variant, Namaskar, also derived from sanskrit. « Nama » means « bow », Namaskar means « I bow to the divine ».
In Hindu culture, the hands are representative, each in its own way. The right hand is used to represent the divine, while the left hand represents the human. It is then an important movement to join your two hands because it means you want to join the human to the divine.
Spiritually, this means that we want to let go of the moment and free ourselves from the shackles of our ego that imprison us far too often. We already developed it when we talked about the heart chakra.
The meaning of Namaste and its symbolism
During your yoga sessions, your teacher certainly uses this expression very often at the end of the session. This is normal. He greets you first, but it is also a sign of respect.
This tradition has been going on for years, and some may take a dim view of not greeting his audience after sharing his knowledge and mastery.
However, it is of course not exclusive to yogi and it has even become an expression known throughout the world. Some will use it in their daily life to greet each other. Even if it is a derivation of its first use, it is not at all a language mistake.
Yoga evolves, like everything else, and it is also a positive sign in the growth of our common passion that continues to spread.
How to do Namaste?
To realize the Namasté, it is not necessary to be mistaken because there are 3 different variants, each of them having its specificities. There is the version to greet God, the one to greet your Guru and the one to greet your fellows. The three are obviously simple to achieve but once again we must be sure to greet in the right way.
One thing is very important : the height at which you place your hands. You have the choice between the hands clasped above your head to greet God, the hands in front of your face to greet your Guru and finally the hands (always clasped) in front of your chest to greet your fellows.
A real principle of life
For many yogis, Namaste is not just a word. It is certainly the first one they pronounced in Sanskrit, but far from being the last. Indeed, who has never thought about the etymology of this expression?
It is present in all our sessions, some of them include the Crescent Moon Pose or the Moon Salutation, but also in the articles about the chakras (Vishuddha, Tadasana, Savasana). You can find them detailed on our website which offers other qualitative aspects, such as pants all more incredible than each other.
Namaste is a way of thinking, the will to want to share your positivity with others.
It is an important gesture between us because it is a way of sharing vibrations between two people practising it at the same time.
We wanted to have a deep look at the Namasté, this widespread expression which is not always correctly used anyway. That’s why we started with its origins to go on with its meaning and its symbolism.
At the end we wanted to show you how to practise it but also how you have to feel it to make Namaste a real principle of life. We really hope you enjoyed this article.