Thursday, February 26, 2009
It is commonly used in India and Nepal by Hindus, Jains and Buddhists, and many continue to use this outside the Indian subcontinent.
When spoken to another person, it is commonly accompanied by a slight bow made with hands pressed together, palms touching and fingers pointed upwards, in front of the chest. The gesture can also be performed wordlessly and carry the same meaning.
In Indian and Nepali culture, the word is spoken at the beginning of written or verbal communication. However, upon departure the only the wordless hands-folded gesture is made.
In yoga, namasté is said to mean "The light in me honors the light in you," as spoken by both the yoga instructor and yoga students.