Sanscrit Glossary: y

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Sanscrit Glossary: ya

Yajur Veda

One of the four major ancient revered spiritual Indian scriptures. There are two primary collections (Samhitas) of the Yajur Veda: Shukla (white) and Krishna (black). Both contain the verses necessary for rituals.


The king or god of death.


The practice of psychological restraints or the five vows or social conducts that make up the first limb of Ashtanga Yoga as propounded by Maharishi Patanjali.


One of the three sacred rivers of India. The other two being Ganga and Sarasvati, sometimes refering to the three main Nadis (energy-channels) in the subtle or energy body (Pranamayakosha), Ida, Pingala and Sushumna.


Lit. ‘loom, instrument, machine’. A visual device used in meditation mainly in the Hindu and Tibetan Tantric Tradition. Symbolic representation of aspects of divinity. Derived from the root ‘Yam’ meaning ‘to sustain’.


Union, the practice and process of Yoga as propounded by many different Rishis, Sages, Saints, Yogis and Munis. Also separation (of Purusha and Prakriti) acc. to Samkhya. Also Samadhi and many more definitions as mentioned in the Bhagavad Gita and other major Yoga texts.

Yogi, Yogin

One who is devoted to his Yoga practice.


One who is devoted to her Yoga practice.


Sanskrit word for ‘divine passage’, ‘place of birth’, ‘womb’ (more as nature as a womb and cradle of all creations), ‘sacred temple’. Yoni also refers to the lotus-headed nude goddess who displays her vulva, not as a birthing figure, but as divine bliss images of veneration. In a wider sense: ‘place of birth, source, origin, spring, fountain’. Together with the Lingam, in Hinduism, especially Shivaism, the Yoni is a symbol for the creative divine energy. The unison of Shiva and Shakti, the female energy, finds its representation in the mystic and artistic expression of Lingam and Yoni.


A vast aeon of time, of which there are four that make up a single cycle, the Mahayuga, covering 1’550’220’000 years, with periods of latency following each active phase.

Satya Yuga

The first of the four Yugas. The golden age of enlightenment, lasting 5’200’000 years.

Treta Yuga

The second of the four Yugas. An age during which the descent towards the darkness of delusion has begun, lasting 390’000 years.

Dvapara Yuga

The third of the four Yugas. An age during which the descent towards the darkness of delusion has furthered itself, lasting 260’000 years.

Kali Yuga

The last of the four Yugas. The current age of ignorance, materialism and destruction, lasting 130’000 years, acc. to other sources 432’000 years.