Definition - What does Namaha mean?

Namaha is a Sanskrit word that means “not me” or “it is not about me.” It reflects the notion that the yogi is not in control of his/her life or the universe and that he/she submits to a higher power or the higher Self. Namaha is used in mantras and shlokas.

In yoga, chanting a mantra is a practice that yogis use to focus concentration on one thought and/or still the mind in meditation. When namaha is part of a mantra, it reminds the yogi that he/she is part of the universe and gains peace only by removing the focus from him/herself.

Yogapedia explains Namaha

Some examples of namaha in yogic mantras include:

  • Om namaha sri – represents letting go and giving of oneself.
  • Om namaha Shivaya – focuses on the positive and the divine within.
  • Om gum ganipati-ya namaha – removes obstacles and opens the door to success.
  • Om Sri Kali durgaya namaha – provides protection and removes negativity.
  • Om Sri Ramaya namaha – begets pure divine consciousness and truth.

The mantras are typically chanted – aloud or internally – while in a relaxed asana, either reclined or seated, such as padmasana (lotus pose) and sukhasana (easy pose).

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