Nadi, aka: Nādi, Nadī, Nāḍī, Nāḍi; 17 Definition(s)


Nadi means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit, Buddhism, Pali, the history of ancient India, Marathi. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Hinduism

Yoga (school of philosophy)

The root of nadi is nad, which in Sanskrit means, “to flow”. So nadis are the flowing currents of energy in the body. They are energy centers in the body so are actual physical organs. The origin point of the nadis is called the medhra and is located between muladhara and manipura charkas.

The physical termination point of ida nadi is said to be the left nostril and the pingala nadi is the right. By manipulation of the breath through alternate nostrils, the pranas are balanced and control. Then the jiva or individual consciousness can be perceived. (see Chandra bedha, Surya bedha and Nadi Shodhana)

Citta Shakti (conscious or mental force) is the energy flowing through Ida nadi, and Prana Shakti (vital or physical force) is that running through Pingala Nadi. Through Sushumna Nadi flows Atma Shakti (spiritual force). Ida and Pingala physiologically correspond to the two aspects of the auotonomic nervous system. Pingala corresponds to the symapathetic nervous system (fight or flight response) and the Ida corresponds to the parasympathetic nervous system: reduces heart rate, constricts blood vessels, slows respiration and generally relaxes the mind, body and senses.

Source: Typepad: Mudras for Pranayama
Yoga book cover
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Yoga is originally considered a branch of Hindu philosophy (astika), but both ancient and modern Yoga combine the physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga teaches various physical techniques also known as āsanas (postures), used for various purposes (eg., meditation, contemplation, relaxation).

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Ayurveda (science of life)

Nāḍī (नाडी) is a Sanskrit word referring to Corchorus olitorius (tossa jute), from the Malvaceae family. It is also known as Nāḍīśāka. Certain plant parts of Nāḍī are eaten as a vegetable (śāka), according to Caraka in his Carakasaṃhitā sūtrasthāna (chapter 27), a classical Āyurvedic work. The plant is therefore part of the Śākavarga group of medicinal plants, referring to the “group of vegetables/pot-herbs”. It is speculated the plant originates from the Indo-Burmese area or from India, along with several other related species.

Source: Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany

Nāḍī (नाडी, “nerves”) are wiry structures attached to brain and spinal cord. They, spreading all over the body, carry sensation and control the movements.

Source: Google Books: Essentials of Ayurveda
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

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Vyakarana (Sanskrit grammar)

Nadī (नदी).—A technical term applied in Panini's grammar to words in the feminine gender ending in ई (ī) and ऊ (ū) excepting a few like स्त्री,श्री, भ्रू (strī, śrī, bhrū) and others; it is optionally applied to words ending in इ (i) and उ (u), of course in the fem. gender, before case affixes of the dative, ablative, genitive and locative sing. The term was probably in use before Panini and was taken from the fem. word नदी (nadī) which was taken as a model. Very probably there was a long list of words like नद् (nad) (नदट् (nadaṭ)) चोर (cora) (चोरट् (coraṭ)) etc. which were given as ending in ट् () and to which the affix ई (ī) (ङीप् (ṅīp)) was added for forming the feminine base;the first word नदी (nadī) so formed, was taken as a model and all words in the list and similar others were called नदी (nadī); cf. P. I 4. 3-6.

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Nādi (नादि).—(a root) beginning with न् (n) in the Dhatupatha as contrasted with one beginning with ण् () (णादि (ṇādi)) whose ण् () is, of course, changed into न् (n) when conjugational and other forms are arrived at; cf. सर्वे नादयो णोपदेशा नृतिनन्दिनदिनक्किनाटिनाथृनाधृनॄवर्जम् (sarve nādayo ṇopadeśā nṛtinandinadinakkināṭināthṛnādhṛnṝvarjam) M.Bh. on VI. 1.65.

Source: Wikisource: A dictionary of Sanskrit grammar
context information

Vyakarana (व्याकरण, vyākaraṇa) refers to Sanskrit grammar and represents one of the six additional sciences (vedanga) to be studied along with the Vedas. Vyakarana concerns itself with the rules of Sanskrit grammar and linguistic analysis in order to establish the correct context of words and sentences.

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Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Nadī (नदी) is the name of a meter belonging to the Anuṣṭubh class of Dhruvā (songs) described in the Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 32:—“the metre which has in its feet of eight syllables the first and the final one long, is nadī”.

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra
Natyashastra book cover
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Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (śāstra) of performing arts, (nāṭya, e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects. It also teaches the rules for composing dramatic plays (nataka) and poetic works (kavya).

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Jyotisha (astronomy and astrology)

Nāḍī (नाडी).—Unit of time equivalent to 24 minutes. Note: Nāḍī is a Sanskrit technical term used in ancient Indian sciences such as Astronomy, Mathematics and Geometry.

Source: Wikibooks (hi): Sanskrit Technical Terms
Jyotisha book cover
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Jyotisha (ज्योतिष, jyotiṣa or jyotish) refers to ‘astronomy’ or “Vedic astrology” and represents the fifth of the six Vedangas (additional sciences to be studied along with the Vedas). Jyotisha concerns itself with the study and prediction of the movements of celestial bodies, in order to calculate the auspicious time for rituals and ceremonies.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Nāḍī (नाडी, “subtle channel”) is explained in terms of kuṇḍalinīyoga by Lakṣmaṇadeśika in his 11th-century Śaradātilaka.—The body is described, starting from the “bulb” (kanda), the place in which the subtle channels (nāḍī) originate, located between anus and penis (28–9). The three principal channels are iḍā (left), piṅgalā (right) and suṣumṇā (in the centre of the spine and the head). Inside the suṣumṇā is citrā, a channel connecting to the place on the top of the skull called the brahmarandhra (30–4).

Source: The Śāradātilakatantra on Yoga
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Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

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Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Nāḍi (नाडि, “channel”) refers to one of the sixteen types of “locus” or “support” (ādhāra) according to the Netratantra. These ādhāras are called so because they “support” or “localise” the self and are commonly identified as places where breath may be retained. They are taught in two different setups: according to the tantraprakriyā and according to the kulaprakriyā. Nāḍi belongs to the latter system.

Source: The Śaiva Yogas and Their Relation to Other Systems of Yoga
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Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

1) Nadī (नदी, ‘stream’) is mentioned in the Rigveda1 and later. Reference is made to shallows (gādha) in the river’s bed, to the opposite bank (pāra), and to the bathing of horses in streams. Rivers are also mentioned in close connexion with mountains. The title Nadīpati, ‘lord of rivers’, is once used to express ‘ocean’ or ‘sea-water’.

2) Nāḍī (नाडी) denotes a ‘vein’ or ‘artery’ in the human body in the Atharvaveda and later, a natural extension of the literal sense of ‘reed’.

3) Nāḍī (नाडी) means a musical instrument, a ‘reed flute’, in the Rigveda as well as the Kāṭhaka-saṃhitā, where in one passage it is mentioned along with the Tūṇava.

4) Nāḍī (नाडी) in the Yajurveda-saṃhitās seems to mean the box of the chariot wheel.

Source: Vedic index of Names and Subjects

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Nādi (नादि) refers to a unit of time according to the 2nd-century Tattvārthasūtra 5.40.—What is the duration of lava? It is seven stokas. What is the duration of one nādi? It consists of 38.5 lava. What is an Indian-hour (muhūrta)? It consists of two nādis.

Source: Encyclopedia of Jainism: Tattvartha Sutra 5: The category of the non-living
General definition book cover
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Jainism is an Indian religion of Dharma whose doctrine revolves around harmlessness (ahimsa) towards every living being. The two major branches (Digambara and Svetambara) of Jainism stimulate self-control (or, shramana, ‘self-reliance’) and spiritual development through a path of peace for the soul to progess to the ultimate goal.

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Languages of India and abroad

Pali-English dictionary

nadi : (aor. of nadati) roared; made a noise. || nadī (f.), river.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

Nādi, (f.)=nāda, loud sound, thundering (fig.) Vv 6410. (Page 349)

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Nadī, (f.) (Ved. nadī, from nadati=“the roaring, ” cp. also nandati) a river; often characterised as mahā° in opp. to kun° rivulet; pl. nadiyo also collect. “the waters. ” — D. I, 244 (Aciravatī nadī); S. II, 32, 118, 135; V, 390; A. I, 33, 136, 243 (mahā°); II, 55, 140 (mahā°); III, 52; IV, 101 (m°), 137; Sn. 425, 433, 568, 720; Dh. 251; J. I, 296; II, 102; III, 51; III, 91 (Kebukā); V, 269 (Vetaraṇī°); VI, 518 (Ketumatī); Pv IV. 354; Vism. 468 (sīghasotā); PvA. 256 (m°); Sdhp. 21, 194, 574.—Gen. sg. nadiyā J. I, 278; It. 113; Instr. nadiyā J. I, 278; PvA. 46; pl. Nom. nadiyo Miln. 114 (na tā n. dhuva-salilā), najjo PvA. 29 (mahā°); & najjāyo J. VI, 278; gen nadīnaṃ Vin. I, 246=Sn. 569 (n. sāgaro mukhaṃ).—kunnadī a small river S. I, 109; II, 32, 118; V, 47, 63; A. II, 140; IV, 100; V, 114 sq.—On n. in similes see J. P. T. S. 1906, 100.

—kuñja a river glen DA. I, 209; —kūla the bank of a river Cp. III, 71; —tīra=°kūla J. I, 278; —dugga a difficult ford in a river S. II, 198; —vidugga=°dugga A. I, 35; III, 128. (Page 346)

Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary
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Pali is the language of the Tipiṭaka, which is the sacred canon of Theravāda Buddhism and contains much of the Buddha’s speech. Closeley related to Sanskrit, both languages are used interchangeably between religions.

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Marathi-English dictionary

nadī (नदी).—f (S) A river. Pr. nadīcēṃ mūḷa ṛṣīcēṃ kūḷa pāhūṃ nayē.

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nāḍī (नाडी).—f (S) Any tubular organ of the body, an artery, a vein, an intestine &c. 2 The stalk, culm, or haum of a plant. 3 The tape of the waist of a garment. It is a piece of a marked off length, about four feet: also that material, taping or tape-stuff. 4 A pipe or tube. 5 The pulse (at the hand or foot). 6 An hour of twenty-four minutes. 7 (From the conceit of nāḍī A vein.) A classified division of the table of the lunar asterisms. There are three, each containing nine asterisms. They are named ādināḍī, madhyanāḍī, antyanāḍī. 8 A specific duct or canal in the system, of which it pleaseth the Hindus to reckon three; viz. kaphanāḍī, pittanāḍī, vātanāḍī. nāḍī ākarṣaṇa karaṇēṃ-hōṇēṃ-gōḷā karaṇēṃ &c. To draw up as in dying; and fig. To ruin or be ruined.

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nādī (नादी).—a (nāda) That is taken up or engrossed by (any object of desire or interest): also that dangles after, dances attendance upon, hangs upon.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

nadī (नदी).—f A river.

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nāḍī (नाडी).—f Any tubular organ of the body, an artery, a vein. The stalk of a plant. The tape of the waist of a garment. A pipe or tube. The pulse (at the hand or foot). An hour of twenty-four minutes. A classified division of the table of the lunar asterisms. nāḍī ākarṣaṇa karaṇēṃ-hōṇēṃ-gōḷā karaṇēṃ &c. To draw up as in dying; to ruin or be ruined.

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nādī (नादी).—a That is taken up or engrossed by (any object of desire or interest). That dances attendance upon, hangs upon.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
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Marathi is an Indo-European language having over 70 million native speakers people in (predominantly) Maharashtra India. Marathi, like many other Indo-Aryan languages, evolved from early forms of Prakrit, which itself is a subset of Sanskrit, one of the most ancient languages of the world.

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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Nadi (नदि).—Ved. Praise.

Derivable forms: nadiḥ (नदिः).

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Nadī (नदी).—A river, any flowing stream; रविपीतजला तपात्यये पुनरोघेन हि युज्यते नदी (ravipītajalā tapātyaye punaroghena hi yujyate nadī) Ku.4.44; यथा नद्यः स्यन्दमानाः समुद्रेऽ स्तं गच्छन्ति नामरूपे विहाय (yathā nadyaḥ syandamānāḥ samudre' staṃ gacchanti nāmarūpe vihāya) Muṇḍa.

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Nāḍi (नाडि) or Nāḍī (नाडी).—f.

1) The tubular stalk of any plant.

2) The hollow stalk of a lotus &c; स इत्थमुद्वीक्ष्य तदब्द- नालनाडीभिरन्तर्जलमाविवेश (sa itthamudvīkṣya tadabda- nālanāḍībhirantarjalamāviveśa) Bhāg.3.8.19.

3) Any tubular organ of the body (such as an artery, vein); षडधिकदशनाडीचक्रमध्यस्थितात्मा (ṣaḍadhikadaśanāḍīcakramadhyasthitātmā) Māl.5.1,2.

4) A pipe, flute.

5) A fistulous sore, fistula, sinus.

6) The pulse at the hand or foot.

7) A measure of time equal to twenty-four minutes.

8) A period of time = 1/2 Muhūrta.

9) A sort of bent grass.

1) A juggling trick.

11) A leather-string; L. D. B.

12) A weaver's implement; L. D. B.

Derivable forms: nāḍiḥ (नाडिः).

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Nādi (नादि).—a. Sounding, roaring.

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Nāḍi (नाडि).—f. (-ḍiḥ-ḍī) 1. The stalk or stem of any plant. 2. Any tubular, organ of the body, as an artery, a vein, an intestine, &c. 3. The hollow stalk of a lotus, &c. 4. A fistulous sore, a flstula, a sinus. 5. A sort of bent grass. 6. A juggling trick. 7. Deception. 8. An hour of twenty-four minutes. 9. Any pipe or tube. 10. The pulse, either at the hand or feet, &c. E. naḍ to fall off or from, affix ac and in or ṅīṣ optionally added.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary
context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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Relevant definitions

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