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August 14, 2012

Namaste. What it means & why we say it.

Photo: bethscupham

The other day, one of the girls in class asked me what “namaste” means and why we say it.

I gave her a very Coles Notes version of my understanding behind the word and the gesture:

namaste, I bow to the divine light within you and you bow to the divine light within me.

She seemed satisfied with this, and so did I.

Later in the day while searchin’ the ‘net I came across something by someone, somewhere out there which takes my half-assed explanation a little further.

I love this.

Then, just now, while searching for a pic for this post, I came across this interpretation.

And according to wikipedia…. my source for everything:

namah = bow
te = to you
Namaste ~ I bow to you

Namaste as a gesture is used to greet one another. It’s a gesture of respect that can be used globally between people of all age, race and gender. Totally encompassing the belief that “we are one.” Hands together at heart centre “represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra” (wiki).

Namaste. What does it mean to you?

Editor: Lynn Hasselberger

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aj Nov 1, 2014 10:29pm

It is actually

Namaha = bow down

Astu = let it be

a student becomes a step by some sanskrit rule.

moonring Sep 15, 2014 8:15am

The word "Namaste" gets overused in popular society, and the meaning becomes lost in the mix, unfortunately. So how do I keep it close to my heart? How do I keep it fresh? When I say it, how do I keep meaning it?

I really liked how you asked, "What does it mean to you?" My best teachers have always asked me that very question. It inspires me to reflect and come into my own answers. I also appreciated your willingness to and interest in keep opening up the question.

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Shawna Turner

Shawna Turner. Aimless wanderer. Happiest with a book in one hand, glass of wine in the other, dreaming of down dogs, knitting, and really good cheese. Blog: a side of yoga..