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Glossary of Terms: G

Ganesh Chaturthi

Ganesh Chaturthi


A sacred utterance (or mantra) that is recited by orthodox Hindus three times daily; it derives from Rig Veda 3.62.10 and translates, "Om, earth, sky, heavens! May the most excellent effulgence of the Sun-god lead to higher awareness."


speaking "in tongues," voicing utterances somewhat like words, produced during intense religious excitement; from Greek "glossa" ("tongue") and "lalein" ("to talk")


[Lit. "pertaining to knowledge"]; a religious and philosophical movement prominent in ancient Greece and Rome of the 2nd century C.E.; evident in some early Greek interpretations of Christian doctrine that stressed secret knowledge


"World of the cows," the name given to Krishna's heaven; sometimes thought of as Mount Meru (where devotees can live near the deity after death).

Good Friday Holy Friday

Good Friday/Holy Friday


A female cowherd, who in Hindu mythology was thought of as secretly meeting with Krishna in the forest; in a more general sense referring to a fervent devotee of a deity.

Great Lent/Clean Monday

Great Lent/Clean Monday


"Householder stage," the second of the four traditional ashramas (stages of life) in Hinduism.




"Guru's house," referring to a religious establishment or school in Hinduism.