Namaste, Namaskar...Do we know the real meaning?
Having a look at the Yoga community, these two words recurrently appear almost everywhere. Our blogs, webpages, instagram accounts, facebooks, magazines... they are all full of Namastes and Namaskars. But do we know what is the meaning of these words? , and even more, the difference (if any) between them?
To find this out, what better than asking the true "owners" of the words, Indian people. These were some of their answers:
"Namaste is the combination of the words 'namah' and 'te'. The word 'te' means 'to you'. As such, 'Namaste' means 'I salute or bow to you with respect'.
'Namaskar' is the combinations of the words 'namah' and 'kar'. 'Kar' is derived from the verb 'kri' which means 'to do'. As such, 'Namaskar' means 'I do the act of saluting or bowing with respect' "
- Ajay Kalra, Yoga teacher and counselor-
"Namaste and Namaskar are used for greeting or welcoming. They are quite similar. Namaste is used mostly for a person, while Namaskar is used frequently for a group of people... for example politicians use the word Namaskar while giving a speech".
- Pratyancha Narale, fashion model-
"Namaste is a way of greeting people. Nama means humble oneself down to earth. So you are basically giving respect to the other person.
Regarding the difference with Namaste and Namaskar for me both are synonyms"
- Shweta Kambli, dietitian-
"Namaskar is paying gratitude or showing respect to someone higher or any element in nature. When you start any kind of artform in the Indian culture, you do Namaskar by saying thanks to the audience, the teacher, the ground, and the god or deity for that artform. Namaste would be a 'one to one' way of saying hi or thank you, while Namaskar would be to all the elements and people involved in that situation or moment."
-Janani Prakash, Yoga teacher-
Quite clear, right?