Tag Archives: yoga

~Parigraha~

Parigraha is the concept of possessiveness and greed. It also refers to the desire for and attachment to material things. The word comes from the Sanskrit, pari, meaning “on all sides,” and graha, meaning “to grab.” Therefore, the term may be translated as “taking more than one needs.”

In yoga, parigraha is the opposite of aparigrapha (non-possessiveness). Striving for aparigraha, or eliminating parigraha, is one of the yamas (restraints) that the sage, Patanjali, lists in his Yoga Sutras.

~Chanchala~

Chanchala is a Sanskrit word that means “shaking,” “unsteady,” “quivering,” “inconstant” and “moving.” In yoga and Indian philosophy, chanchala refers to the nature of the mind and its consequential actions that the yogi must still in order to grow spiritually.

In Hindu mythology, Chanchala is one of the names or incarnations of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. As Chanchala, she is called the “restless one” or “fickle one.”

~Satsangi~

Satsangi is a Sanskrit word meaning “seeker of truth” or “one associated with truth.” Some religious groups use the term to mean a person devoted to a specific dogma, particularly that religion’s dogma.

In the traditional sense, a satsangi is someone who joins in satsang, or a community of people gathered for the purpose of spiritual dialogue and seeking spiritual truth. A satsang can take many forms and may include discussion, chanting, meditation and music.

~Uparati~

Uparati is a Sanskrit word that means “quieting,” “ceasing” or “desisting from sensual pleasures or worldly actions.” It is one of the six virtues in Vedanta and Jnana yoga that collectively comprise shat-sampat, which is one of the Four Pillars of Knowledge (Sadhana Chatushtaya). Jnana yogis use these virtues to overcome the illusion of the physical world.

More specifically, uparati is the renouncing of anything that stands in the way of the yogi’s dharma, or duty. Shat-sampat is mental training that allows you to develop mental discipline.

~Sat~

Sat is a Sanskrit word used in yoga, translated as “the true essence” or “that which is unchangeable.” It can be used to refer to an entity, species or the state of existence. In its most philosophical sense, sat, therefore, means “the ultimate reality” or Brahman.

In Indian writings, sat is commonly used as a prefix for other words, and it generally implies that which is true, real and essential or that which is good and virtuous.

~Sufi Whirling~

Sufi whirling is a form of dancing worship in Sufism, an Islamic ascetic or mystic tradition that emphasizes the inward search for the divine (similar to yoga and Hinduism). The dance dates to the 12th or 13th century and to the followers of Muslim poet and mystic Rumi.

The Sufis twirl in a continuous motion with both arms outstretched to the sides – one hand pointed toward the ground and the other pointed toward the sky, symbolizing reaching for the divine. Sufi whirling becomes an ecstatic, meditative-like state.

~Dana~

Dana is a Sanskrit word that means “donation,” “gift” or “giving away as charity.” In some schools of yoga and Hinduism, it is one of the duties or moral observances known as the niyamas.

Dana is a form of generous giving that expects nothing in return. Such giving includes donation of food, clothing or money to the needy, but it also includes offering gifts to family, friends and neighbors as an act of generosity — again, with no expectation that the recipient will reciprocate.

~Dashavatara~

Dashavatara is a term that collectively describes the 10 main incarnations of the Hindu god Vishnu, who is the primary deity of the Vaishnava school of Hinduism and one of the Hindu trinity, along with Brahma and Shiva. The name comes from the Sanskrit dasha, meaning “ten” and avatar, meaning “incarnation.”

In Hindu mythology, Vishnu transforms into different avatars to serve different purposes or accomplish specific tasks. For example, as Rama, his wife Sita is abducted by the demon king Ravana. Rama kills Ravana and saves Sita. This story is told in the Ramayana, one of Hinduism’s most popular sacred texts.

~Bhagavate~

Bhagavate is a Sanskrit term that refers to one who is divine or blessed, and most often is used to describe the supreme deity, which varies depending on the Hindu sect or tradition. While bhagavate is a synonym for “god,” it also translates as “glorious,” “venerable,” “fortunate,” “holy” and “illustrious.” Grammatically, bhagavate is the dative case of bhagavat: The words have the same meaning, but the former serves as a direct object.

In Buddhism, bhagavate can refer to a buddha or a bodhisattva, and in Jainism, it may describe a jina (a liberated great teacher).