Why Namaste?

Sanskrit is believed to be the oldest language in human history; and while things do get lost in translation with a language that’s more than 6,000 years old, we can begin to delve into the meaning of Namaste in many different, resonating ways. The word Namaste is typically used to begin a yoga class before transitioning into asana (poses), or it can be used at the end of a yoga class after Savasana (corpse pose). But what does it mean and what does it represent?

The root word, nama, means “to bow,” while as means “I” and te means “you.” So, literally translated from the ancient language of Sanskrit to modern-day English, Namaste means "I bow to you." Namaste can also be defined as, “I bow to the light in you,” or more succinctly, “I bow to the divine light in you.” It’s said that our divinity rests in our heart center. 

This is the reason we place our hands in prayer position, at our heart center and bow when we say, “Namaste.”  Yet another translation of Namaste is "The God in me sees the God in you.” While yet another is, “I bow to and honor the spirit in you – the one that’s also within me.” The exact translation is less important than the universal meaning Namaste possesses, for it’s a gesture of peace, respect, unity, and divinity