Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Saranagati Mean?

Saranagati is a Sanskrit word that is generally translated as “surrender.” It is derived from the Sanskrit words saranam, meaning “refuge,” “protection” or “shelter” and agati, meaning “to go to” or “to come to.” In the context of Hindu and yogic philosophy, saranagati refers to total surrender to the higher Self or the supreme deity. Saranagati is considered essential in the Hindu tradition of Vaishnavism.

In the bhakti (devotional) traditions, saranagati is the process that is the basis of devotion to either Vishnu or Krishna, depending on which god is considered supreme.


Yogapedia Explains Saranagati

The process of sarangati varies by tradition, but the concepts are similar. In Sri Vaishnava tradition, for example, saranagati consists of six steps:

  • Anukulyasya sankalpa – Accepting thoughts favorable for devotion
  • Pratikulyasya varjanam – Rejecting thoughts that are not favorable for devotion
  • Raksisyatiti visvasa – Adopting an unshakable faith in God as protector and guide
  • Goptrtve varanam – Seeking refuge in God
  • Atma-niksepa – Surrendering to God’s mercy and in service to God
  • Karpanya – Expressing helplessness and a humble attitude

In the Gaudiya tradition, saranagati consists of ten steps.

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