AHANKAR (hankar as it is commonly pronounced in Punjabi) is a compound of Sanskrit aham (I) and kar (\'maker\') and means I-maker, i.e. what individuates the person as I. It stands for egotism, egoism, self conceit, self centredness, vanity or simply pride. Other synonyms used in the sacred texts of
AHIMSA. The term ahimsa is formed by adding the negative prefix a to the word himsa which is derived from the Sanskrit root \'han\', i.e. \'to kill\', \'to harm\', or \'to injure\', and means not killing, not harming, not injuring. The commonly used English equivalent \'non-violence\' is inadequate as it
AKAL, lit. timeless, immortal, non temporal, is a term integral to Sikh tradition and philosophy. It is extensively used in the Dasam Granth hymns by Guru Gobind Singh, who titled one of his poetic compositions Akal Ustati, i.e. In Praise (ustati) of the Timeless One (akal). However, the concept of
AKAL MURATI, a composite term comprising akal (non temporal) and murati (image or form), occurring in the Mul Mantra, the root formula or fundamental creed of the Sikh faith as recorded at the beginning of the Japu, composition with which the Guru Granth Sahib opens, literally means `timeless image`. Elsewhere,
AMAVAS (AMAVASYA), massia in Punjabi, lit. a combination of ama, i.e. together, and vasya, i.e. stationing, signifying coming of the sun and the moon together in one line, is the last day of the dark half of the lunar month when the moon remains entirely hidden from our view. The
ANAHATASABDA figures variously in the Guru Granth Sahib as anahadasabad, anahadatura, anahadajhunkara, anahadabain, anahatanada, anahadabani and anahadadhumand in the Dasam Granth as anahadabani and anahadabaja. The word anahata is from the Sanskrit language. It occurs in Pali and Prakrit texts as well. In the Sanskrit original, it implies unstruck; it
ANHAD/ANHAT BANI or SHABD :A sound that is unending and knows no limits. Audible life current originating from the Divine Will, endlessly carrying on the work of creating and sustaining the universe; interchangeably used with Anhat meaning \'Unstruck\', as it it automatic and not instrumental. It also means sound not
ASAVARI See ASA ASCETICISM, derived from the Greek word askesis, connotes the `training` or `exercise` of the body and the mind. Asceticism or ascetic practices belong to the domain of religious culture, and fasts, pilgrimages, ablutions, purificatory rituals, vigils, abstinence from certain foods and drinks, primitive and strange dress, nudity,
ASCETICISM, derived from the Greek word askesis, connotes the `training` or `exercise` of the body and the mind. Asceticism or ascetic practices belong to the domain of religious culture, and fasts, pilgrimages, ablutions, purificatory rituals, vigils, abstinence from certain foods and drinks, primitive and strange dress, nudity, uncut hair, tonsure.
ATMA, Sanskrit at man, originally meant `breath`. Later the term came to connote `soul` or `principle of life`. The different systems of Indian philosophy gave it further semantic shades. Nyaya Visesaka considered atma a substance and endowed it with qualities of cognition, pleasure, pain, desire, aversion and effort. Sarikhya recognized
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