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Learning Sanskrit - Pronunciation 2
This document was conceived by Gabriel Pradīpaka, as an additional support to his page "Writing: Appendix 1". Here, we are going to deepen in the pronunciation of words. In this second issue we will learn how to pronounce properly over 70 words. It is my fervent desire that all these sacred sounds may help you to experience joy in your life, in the same way as they did in ours.
There is a measure unit called 'mātrā' or "time gap needed to pronounce a short vowel (like 'a')". Short vowels (a, i, u, ṛ, ḷ) last 1 mātrā, while long vowels (ā, ī, ū, ṝ) and diphthongs (e, ai, o, au) last 2 mātrā-s. In turn, Anusvāra ('ṁ') and Visarga ('ḥ') last 1/2 mātrā.
Have three documents at hand (print them if you can): Transliterating (2) (English), Sanskrit Alphabet and Conjuncts. You will need them very often.
To download the sounds, click on the respective icon and then select the adequate choice. If you have the Quick Time plugin installed, it is possible that you cannot download the sound directly. To work this problem around, right-click on the icon and select "Save link as..." or something like that (the statements vary according to the different browsers). That is it! Obviously, you can alternately uninstall the Quick Time plugin, but maybe you might need it for some other things. So, it is your choice, not mine.
The sound files are "properly" named, of course, so that you can recognize the words immediately.
|योग||Yoga||Union; uniting, etc.|
|मन्त्र||mantra||Advise; sacred sound, etc.|
|गुरु||guru||Heavy; one who dissipates darkness by means of his light, etc.|
|संस्कृत||Saṁskṛta||Sanskrit (lit. polished, refined, etc.).|
|त्रिक||Trika||An epithet of Non-dual Shaivism of Kashmir (lit. triple, threefold, forming a triad).|
|मुद्रा||mudrā||Seal, parched or fried grain, etc.|
|बन्ध||bandha||Bondage, bond, lock, etc.|
|परमशिव||Paramaśiva||The Supreme Auspicious, the Highest Śiva.|
|प्रकाश||Prakāśa||Visible, clear, manifest, splendour, brightness, etc.|
|विमर्श||Vimarśa||Examination, knowledge, intelligence, etc.|
|Lord, master, one who is able to, etc.|
|यन्त्र||yantra||Any instrument for holding or restraining or fastening, support, machine, engine, mystical diagram, etc.|
|उपनिषत्||Upaniṣat||Esoteric doctrine, secret doctrine, the celebrated and well-known philosophical writings, etc.|
|वेद||Veda||Sacred knowledge, the famous and well-known four books which constitute the basis of Hinduism, etc.|
|तन्त्र||Tantra||Loom, the leading or principal or essential part, framework, doctrine, rule, the celebrated books which constitute the basis of many philosophical systems (e.g. Trika), etc.|
|महाभारत||Mahābhārata||The great war of the Bhārata-s. Name of the great epic poem describing the acts and contests of the sons of the two brothers Dhṛtarāṣṭra and Pāṇḍu.|
|रामायण||Rāmāyaṇa||The Vālmīki's celebrated poem, describing the "goings" of Rāma and his wife Sītā.|
|Thatness, category of Manifestation.|
|ऋग्वेद||Ṛgveda||"Hymn-Veda" or "Veda of praise". It is the most ancient sacred book of the Hindus.|
|यजुर्वेद||Yajurveda||"The sacrificial Veda", the collective body of sacred Mantra-s or texts which constitute the Yajurveda.|
|सामवेद||Sāmaveda||"Veda of chants". It contains a number of verses or stanzas nearly all of which (except about 78) occur in the Ṛgveda.|
|अथर्ववेद||Atharvaveda||Name of the fourth Veda, which is said to have been composed by the sage Atharvā.|
|अहङ्कार||ahaṅkāra||Ego, false I-sense. Tattva 1 according to Trika (Non-dual Shaivism of Kashmir).|
|शिवसूत||Śivasūtra||"The aphorisms of Śiva". A very important scripture in Trika (Non-dual Shaivism of Kashmir) --It came directly from Śiva, the Supreme Being--.|
|स्पन्दकारिका||Spandakārikā||"The aphorisms of Supreme Vibration". Another crucial scripture belonging to Trika, but its author is a human being.|
|प्रत्यभिज्ञा||pratyabhijñā||Recognition. According to Trika, Śiva is not to be known but recognized He is not an object to be known but the Highest Subject.|
|उत्पलदेव||Utpaladeva||A great Trika master . He wrote "Īśvarapratyabhijñā", a very celebrated scripture of Trika.|
|अर्जुन||Arjuna||"White". One of the Bhārata brothers.|
|कृष्ण||Kṛṣṇa||"Black". Even though He was God Himself, He played the role of Arjuna's charioteer in the Mahābhārata.|
|राम||Rāma||God Himself playing the role of a prince in the Rāmāyaṇa.|
|बुद्ध||Buddha||"Awakened, awake". It is also the name of the sage who was born at Kapilavastu about the year 600 B.C. Śākyamuni was his family name.|
|वसुगुप्त||Vasugupta||The sage who practically founded Trika. He received the Śivasūtra-s from Śiva.|
|कल्लट||Kallaṭa||A celebrated disciple of Vasugupta. He is said to have composed the Spandakārikā, but according to the sage Kṣemarāja, Vasugupta was the real author.|
|क्षेमराज||Kṣemarāja||The great sage who was a disciple of Abhinavagupta. He wrote many important commentaries on Trika's scriptures: e.g. Śivasūtravimarśinī, Spandanirṇaya, etc.|
|वसिष्ठ||Vasiṣṭha||Name of a celebrated Vedic sage. He was the Rāma's guru.|
|बुद्धि||buddhi||Intellect, intelligence, the power of forming and retaining conceptions and general notions. It is the tattva 14 in Trika.|
|मनः||manaḥ||Mind. It is the tattva 16 in Trika.|
|इन्द्रिय||indriya||Power, force, power of the senses, etc.|
|सद्विद्या||Sadvidyā||Pure knowledge. Name of the fifth tattva in Trika.|
|माया||Māyā||Illusion, deception, unreality, etc. Name of the sixth tattva in Trika.|
|कञ्चुक||Kañcuka||Cover, envelope, the skin of a snake, etc. "Sheath of ignorance" (tattva-s 7 to 11 in Trika).|
|कर्म||karma||Action, act, rite, etc.|
|महाभूत||mahābhūta||Gross element. There are five Mahābhūta-s: ether, air, fire, water and earth.|
|तन्मात्र||tanmātra||Subtle element. There are five Tanmātra-s.|
|अग्नि||agni||Fire. The third Mahābhūta.|
|वायु||vāyu||Air. The second Mahābhūta.|
|आकाश||ākāśa||Ether, space. The first Mahābhūta.|
|पृथिवी||pṛthivī||Earth. The fifth Mahābhūta.|
|आपः||āpaḥ||Water. The fourth Mahābhūta.|
|पुरुष||puruṣa||Person, individual soul, etc. Name of the tattva 12 in Trika.|
|प्रकृति||prakṛti||The original or natural form or condition of anything, original or primary substance, cause, original source, etc. Name of the tattva 13 in Trika.|
|महाप्राण||mahāprāṇa||Aspirate or hard breathing (heard in the utterance of certain letters, specially consonants: kha, gha, tha, etc.).|
|कूटबीज||kūṭabīja||Esoteric name of "kṣa" conjunct.|
|आचार्य||ācārya||Spiritual guide or teacher, etc.|
Well, I hope you have learnt and enjoyed these wonderful words. Since these were terms you commonly find in Yoga and so on, their right pronunciation is of the highest importance. Pronounce such words in a proper manner, and you will have your way paved toward complete mastery as regards Sanskrit pronunciation, no doubt about it.
This document was conceived by Gabriel Pradīpaka, one of the two founders of this site, and spiritual guru conversant with Sanskrit language and Trika philosophy.
For further information about Sanskrit, Yoga and Indian Philosophy; or if you simply want to comment, ask a question or correct a mistake, feel free to contact us: This is our e-mail address.