Showing posts with label Ayurveda Dictionary. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ayurveda Dictionary. Show all posts

Dictionary of Sanskrit Terms used in Ayurveda




The detailed vocabulary that follows will help you understand the many key Sanskrit terminology used in Ayurveda.


abhyanga - anointing body with oil or ghee

accha peya - pure cow's ghee

agni - bodily fire, particularly digestive fire

ahamkara - ego; the "I" notion; cosmic memory recorder of all lives

ahara rasa - ingested nutrients, before they are digested

aja - goat; one who transcends the cycle of births

ajna - limitless power; name of sixth chakra

akasha - space; principle of vacuity

akshitarpana - herbal decoction used to revive eyes

alambusha - one of fourteen nadis; starts at anus and ends in mouth

alepanam - application of astringent plaster

alochaka - fire of eyes; one of five fires of Pitta

ama - undigested, foul-odored remnants of food in bodily channels

anahata- fearless, unafflicted; nature of the black antelope, symbol and name of fourth chakra

anna lepa sveda - fomentation therapy where poultice is applied to whole body

annam - literally, "that which grows on the earth"; food

annavaha srotas - digestive system or channels

antahkarana - inner or psychic instrument, referring to the mind (manas), intellect (buddhi) and ego memory (ahamkara)

anuvasana - decoction generally used in enema therapy

apana - one of five bodily airs; air controlling ejection of bodily wastes

artava - menstrual fluid

artava dhatu - ovum

artavavaha srotas - menstrual system or female reproductive channels

ashmaghna sveda - sudation on a hot stone slab

ashtapana - another term used for decoction enema therapy

Astanga Hridaya - Ayurvedic text written by Vagbhatta

asthi dhatu - bone and cartilage tissue

Atharva Veda - one of four principle Vedas

Atman - indwelling spirit; soul within body; Conscious Self

avagahana sveda - sudation in a hot tub

avalambaka - water dosha of heart; one of the five waters of Kapha

avapeda nasya - introduction of soft paste into the nasal passages

Ayurveda - knowledge of life; Vedic science of health

bala - strength

bandhana sveda - fomentation therapy where poultice is applied to a localized area of the body

baspa sveda - fomentation occurring in a traditionally designed wooden box, whereby the head of the person remains outside of the box

Bharata Bhumi - ancient name of India, land of Bharata; land of dharma

bhasma - literally, "ash"; incinerated metal or mineral used as potent, powdered remedy

bhrajaka - heat of the skin; one of the five fires of Pitta

bhu sveda - sudation on heated surface of the earth

bija - seed mantra

bodhaka - water of the tongue; one of the five waters of Kapha

brahmacarini - student of the Vedas; observing a monastic life

Brahma Randhra - most sacred aperture of the body, situated at the center of the cranium

brahmin - spiritual caste; one of the four castes delineated in the Hindu scriptures

brhmana - tonification or strengthening therapy

buddhi - faculty of personal wisdom; resolve of the mind; the intellect;

Buddhi - Mercury, son of Shiva; deity who rules Wednesday

chai - Indian tea mixed with milk

chakra - wheel; seven energy centers of consciousness in the body

Charaka - ancient Ayurvedic scholar

Charaka Samhita - Charaka's treatise on Ayurveda

churna - powder

collyrium - Ayurvedic salves for eyes

darbha - type of grass used in Ayurvedic medicine

deva (devata) - generic name for the gods in the Hindu scriptures

devadatta - one of the five subsidiary airs

Devanagari - means of communication between the gods; later, translated as

Samskritam (Sanskrit); one of several scripts in which Sanskrit may be written

dhanamjaya - one of five subsidiary airs

dhani - audible or imperfect sound

dhara chatti - see dhara patra

dhara patra - treatment pot made from metal or clay used to drop oil on head

dharane - to sustain

dharma - right action according to the laws of nature

dhatu - tissue element of the body

dhmapana - introduction of medicated powders into the nasal passages via a straw or tube

dhoma nasya - inhalation of medicated vapors

dhoti - cloth to wrap the lower body

dosha - literally, "that which can go out of balance"; bodily humor

droni - traditional massage table made from woods such as sandalwood, bilva, khadira, and arjuna

Gaja - Lord of herbivorous animals and keeper of earth's memory of plants  and herbs; the elephant that represents the fifth chakra

gandhari - one of fourteen nadis; begins below the left eye and ends at the big toe of the left foot

gandusa - retention of fluid in the mouth

Ganesha - Ganapati; elephant-headed Lord, son of Shiva; one who blesses all beginnings and renders them auspicious; remover of obstacles

garbha-pinda - fluid state of embryo; cosmic womb

ghara - earthen pot

go - cow; sacred scripture

Gopala - protector of the scriptures and of cows; another name for Lord Krishna

grisma - Sanskrit term for summer, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

guna - attribute or respect, as in the three gunas of Maya

guru - quality of heaviness; spiritual teacher; Guru - Jupiter; deity who rules Thursday

gurukula - traditional school for disseminating knowledge of Vedas

hastajihva - one of fourteen nadis; begins below the right eye and ends at the big toe of the left foot

hemanta - Sanskrit term for early winter, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

holaka sveda - sudation on a daubed surface of the earth

ida - one of two main nadis; begins in the left genital and ends at the left nostril; breath which flows through the left nostril; lunar nadi

indriyas - five senses

Isvara - Vedic name for the omniscient Lord, when used in association with creation

japa - repetition of mantras

jentaka sveda - sudation in a specially designed sweat lodge

jiva - individual soul

jivana - invigoration; life

kala- nutritional membrane for tissues; "body crystal"

kalari- ancient form of martial arts originating in south India

kala vasti - series of sixteen enemas

kambalika - soup made with yoghurt, urad bean and sesame oil

kapha - biological water humor

karma - bondage to action; cause of rebirth

karma vasti - series of thirty enemas

karna purana - dripping fluids into the ears

karshu sveda - sudation in an earth pit

kavalagraha - holding liquid in the mouth for a comfortable period of time

khada - spicy vegetable or herbal soup generally made with buttermilk

kichadi - mixture of rice and mung bean

kitta - waste

kledaka - water of digestion; one of the five waters of Kapha

krekara - one of the five subsidiary airs

Krishna - Gopala, protector of the scriptures and teacher of self-knowledge in the Bhagavad Gita

krushara- thick grain gruel

kuhu - one of fourteen nadis; begins in the throat and ends in the genitals

kumbhika sveda - sudation from a pitcher of warm decoction

kundalini - primal energy of manifestation symbolized by a coiled serpent at the coccyx of the spine

kupa sveda - sudation on a daubed surface of the earth

kurma - one of the five subsidiary airs

kuti sveda - sudation in a specially designed sweat lodge

langhana - depletion or reducing therapy

lassi - traditional Indian beverage made from yoghurt, milk, and fragrant herbs, generally taken after meals to aid digestion

lepa - plastering body with medicated substances

majja dhatu - bone marrow and nerve tissue

makara - crocodile; symbol of sensual movement and trickery

mala - garland; rosary of beads

malas - bodily wastes

mamsa dhatu - muscle tissue

manas - mind

manda - cooked rice at the bottom of the pot

Mangala - Mars; deity who rules Tuesday

manovaha - channels that carry mental energy

mantha - thin gruel made from rice and ghee

mantra - sacred sounds; group of sounds cosmically designed to stimulate certain physical and physic centers of body

mardana - mild pressure massage

marma - anatomical reflex points of the body; vital seats of pranic energy

marsha nasya - introduction of medicated oils into the nasal passages

masala - combination of spices ground together; spicy mixture

masthiskya - medicinal paste applied to the head

maya - cosmic, creative power; manifestation; relative reality

medas - fat

medas dhatu - fat tissue

moksha - a "state" in which the potential material and vibrations for future rebirths on all planes of existence are completely resolved; liberation from the cycle of birth and death

mutravaha srotas - urinary system

nadi - subtle channel within the nervous system made of fine threads of fluid; refers to the gross form in terms of nerves, veins, and so on; pathways of breath; Ayurvedic name for pulse

nadi sveda - steam application through a hose

naga - one of the five subsidiary airs

nasya - nasal insufflation

navana nasya - insufflation of unctuous substances or powders to clear nasal passages

niruha - oils generally used in Ayurvedic enema therapy

odana- thick porridge

ojas - perfected essence of dhatus when bodily system is in excellent order; glow of health

paca kizhi sveda - sudation with green leaf poultice

pachaka - one of the five fires of Pitta; fire of digestion in the stomach

padabhyanga - Ayurvedic foot massage

padaghata - anointing feet with oil

pancha karma - five cleansing therapies of Ayurveda: emesis, enema (two forms), purgation, and nasal medications

parisheka - fomentation with an affusion of Ayurvedic herbs

Patanjali - founder-renovator of the classical Yoga system

payasam - sweet fluid porridge

payasvini - one of fourteen nadis; located in the right ear lobe and connecting with the cranial nerves

peya - decoction made from rice and ghee

phala - fruit

phanita - sticky candy made from sugar cane juice

pichu - process of placing an oil soaked cloth on the forehead

pinda sveda - fomentation therapy with use of a poultice wrapped in a bolus

pingala - one of two main nadis; begins in the right eye and ends in the right genital; solar power; breath of right nostril

pitta - biological fire humor

prabhava - specific action without regard to the general rule of the three stages of taste; exception to the rule; special action of herbs

pradeha - non-absorbent plaster

prakriti - first creation; individual constitution

pralepa - thin, cold layer of plaster

prana - life breath; first of the five airs of the body; vital force; air of the heart

pranavaha - channels that carry prana; force of prana, or breath

pranayama - yogic breathing exercises

prasthara - fomentation on a bed of poultice

prinana - joy infused from nature

puja - religious ceremony

purana - fullness

purishavaha srotas - excretory system

pusha - one of fourteen nadis; begins at the right ear and ends at the big toe of the left foot

rajas (rajasic) - activity or aggressive force of creation; one of the three gunas rakta dhatu - blood tissue

rakta moksha (mokshana) - therapeutic blood letting

raktavaha srotas - circulatory system (hemoglobin portion)

ranjaka - heat of the blood, operating in liver; one of the five fires of Pitta

rasa - initial taste in the three stages of taste; literally, "external beauty," or "maturity"

rasa dhatu - plasma tissue

rasayana - rejuvenation therapy

Rawal - religious head of the Hindus

rtusandhi - junction between two seasons or two phases within a season

rukshana - dehydration therapy

rupa - form

sadhaka - the third fire found in the heart, central to the activity of Pitta; also the one who performs sadhana (the wholesome activities which bring us into harmony with nature)

sadhana - wholesome activity practiced with presence of mind in harmony with nature; helps to revive and awaken cognitive memory

sadhu - simple person

sahasrara - literally, "a thousand petals"; seventh chakra; spatially boundless dwelling

saindhava (sendha namak) - Ayurvedic rock salt

sama - three doshas in a state of sameness

samadhi - silent breath

samana - air of the stomach; one of the five airs of Vata

samhita - text

samskaras - karmic impressions from past lives carried in the subtle body

samvahana - shampooing the body with a warm decoction

sankara sveda - generic name for fomentation therapy where poultice is used

sarada - Sanskrit term for autumn, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

Saraswati - goddess of knowledge; one of fourteen nadis; begins at the base of the tongue and ends in the vocal chords; sonority of vocal prowess

sattva (sattvic) - central aspect of the three gunas; cosmic force of balance and contentment

shakti - cosmic feminine force; power, energy, power of consciousness

shamana - therapy which nurtures and adds strength to the body; palliative measure

Shani - Saturn; deity who rules Saturday

shankhini - one of fourteen nadis, begins in the throat and ends on the left side of the anus

shikha - crest of the head

shiro abhyanga (shirobhyanga) - anointing the head with oil; head massage

shirodhara - dripping medicated decoction on the forehead

shiro tarpana - application of oil to the head

shirovasti - applying oil to the shaven head

Shiva - pure being or pure consciousness

shodhana - therapy which consists of elimination procedures; purification measure

shukra - collective refined essence belonging to shukra dhatu; refined emotion of love; semen, reproductive fluid; the ovum of the female; 

Shukra - Sanskrit name for Venus; deity who rules Friday; giver of happiness or fame

shukra dhatu - sperm

shukravaha srotas - male reproductive system or channels

sisira - Sanskrit term for late winter, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

sirovirechana - snuff inhalation therapy

slesaka - water of the joints; one of the five waters of Kapha

sleshma - another name for Kapha or phlegm

sneha - extravagant love; lubrication; name of the enema treatment in which only half cup of oil is used

snehana - external oelation of the body; lubrication therapy

snehapana - internal lubrication of the body

snehika dhoomapana - herbs mixed with oil or fat for therapeutic smoking

soma - potent nectar taken by the devas to give eternal strength; pleasure principle at work behind mind and senses

srotas - channels, as in the thirteen channels of circulation

sthambana - retention therapy

suksma - subtle

Surya - Sun; deity who rules Sunday

Sushruta - ancient Ayurvedic scholar

sushumna - central and main nadi, within spinal column, which accommodates all nadis

svedana - sudation or fomentation of body; sweat inducing therapy

swami - renunciate; one who knows Brahman and the Self to be One

taila - oil

Taittiriya - literally, "three birds"; one of the Upanishads which deals with Self-knowledge

takra dhara - medicated buttermilk

tamas (tamasic) - inert aspect of creation; one of the three gunas

tanmatra (tanmatric) - quantum energy aspect of the subtle elements that pervade both subtle and gross bodies

tarpaka - water of the sense organs; one of the five waters of Kapha

tarpana - thick gruel of rice, bean, black pepper and ghee

tejas - cool, refined universal fire; subtle, fire of the mind

tikta ghrita - pure ghee combined with bitter herbs

tridosha - three doshas in a state of balance

ubtan - fresh ground legume or grain flour traditionally used to cleanse the skin

udana - air of the throat; one of the five airs of Vata

udvartana - oil or dry massage for Kapha disorder

upadhatu - secondary tissue of the body

upanaha sveda - generic name for fomentation therapy where poultice is used

Upanishad - ancient Vedantic scripture of India

utkarita - pudding made from milk, yoghurt or cream

uttara vasti - douching enema

Vagbhatta - ancient Ayurvedic scholar

vairechanika dhoomapana - therapeutic smoking of dried herbs

vajikarana - aphrodisiac; virilization therapy

vamana - therapeutic vomiting; emesis therapy

varna - pure vibration; unmanifest sound

varsa - Sanskrit term for rainy season, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

varuni - one of fourteen nadis, which originates between the throat and left ear and ends at the anus

vasanta - Sanskrit term for spring, one of the six seasons in Ayurveda

vasti - Ayurvedic enema therapy

vasti netra - hose used in enema therapy

vasti putaka - enema bag

vata - biological air humor

vayu - air or wind; another name for Vata

veda - knowledge

Vedanta - culmination of Vedas in the philosophy of knowledge of the Self

Vedas - ancient books of knowledge presenting the spiritual science of awareness; first knowledge on earth

Vedic - belonging to the Vedas

vicarana sneha - medicated ghee

vilepika - mixture of four parts water and one part rice

vipaka - post-digestive effect of herbs

virechana - purgation therapy; one of five cleaning actions used in pancha karma

virya - energetic effect of herbs as heating or cooling

vishvabhesaja - healing secret of the universe; universal medicine

vishvodara - one of fourteen nadis; exists in the umbilicus and energizes bodily prana

vyana - air of circulation; one of the five airs of Vata

vyayama - natural forms of exercise

Yama - Lord of death

Yama damstra - period of time between November 22 and December 9 when the earth begins its northward rotation around the sun

yashasvini - one of fourteen nadir; companion nadi to pingala which runs

from the left ear to the big toe of the right foot

yavagu - mixture of six parts water and one part barley yoga - psycho-physical practices aimed at Self-knowledge

yogavaha - that which enhances the effect of what it enjoins

yoga vasti - series of eight enemas

yogin (yogi) - one whose life is devoted to the practice of sadhanas to attain union with God

yusha - bean soup



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