Sanskrit: Yoga Dictionary for Beginners

The language used in ancient India and the holy texts of Hinduism is Sanskrit. Although most yoga poses have an English name, there may be some words that are still used by teachers in their original form. We have gathered some of them for you.
Sanskrit: Yoga Dictionary for Beginners

The practice of yoga dates back to ancient India. This knowledge has long been passed down from generation to generation in unwritten form. The first written records can be traced back to between 1000 and 600 BC, but the various knowledge and the practices were systematized a bit later (probably around 100-200 AC) by Pantajali in his work Yoga Sutras. He uses ancient Sanskrit. Let’s see what some of the Sanskrit words in yoga, which are also commonly used in the best yoga studios in Budapest, mean.



(asana) is used for a firm and comfortable meditative posture, a yoga position that relaxes and brings harmony. It is used as a suffix to names such as Dhanurasana. (Bow pose.) Asanas strengthen the body, enhance body awareness, develop attention, and refine perception.

asana sanskrit in yoga



Namaste in India is a form of greeting, meaning: I greet the God (s) who dwell in you. It has already been used in the Vedas, more than 3000 year old Sanskrit texts of Hinduism. The greeting is done with palms folded inward in front of the middle of our chest, eyes closed, slightly bent forward, and then pronounced namaste. It is believed that if we bow to the other person’s soul with heartfelt feelings and consciously, a spiritual connection is established between the two persons, thus starting a positive cycle of vibration. As a result of the spiral of happiness which is formed through this greeting, the heart chakras of the two persons align for a short time.



The om (AUMsyllable) is a vibrating sound representing the Supreme Lord and the transcendental sphere from the first moment of creation, encompassing all the energies of the creator, but also the most important Hindu symbol. It is also the mantra of the third eye chakra, the eye of insight located in your forehead. (Read more about chakras here.) The sound is made up of three tones, “A”, “U”, and “M”, which stand for the following:

“A” = rough material world (state of wakefulness)

“U” = the astral plane (state of dream),

“M” = state of the mind, symbol of deep sleep.

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This is also a Sanskrit word, for which there is no English equivalent. The Bhagavad Gita (part of the Mahabarate, which is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India)  writes of the word: “The level of perfection is called samadhi, or trance. In this case, by practicing yoga, the human mind is free from all material activities. In this state, the yogi can see himself with the help of his pure mind, and he can draw joy and enjoyment from it. On this joyful plane man is part of the infinite spiritual happiness he experiences with his transcendental senses. In other words, it is the highest state of spirituality and meditation. 


Plus a Mantra – Shanti

The Sanskrit word Shanti means peace. As a universal mantra of peace, it addresses three levels: there should be peace on a physical, spiritual-spiritual level, and everything that could disturb our inner peace should pass. Use this mantra if you want more harmony, compassion, peace in your life, or if you face difficult situations and challenges.


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