* Indicates that the entry was obtained from the VedaBase glossary.
All other entries were obtained from the krishna.com glossary.

Vedic Sanskrit Glossary - B -

baba — religious master, a term of respect.

bābājī — One who devotes the major portion of his life to solitary devotional practices, especially chanting the Lord’s names.

bābājī — a person who dwells alone in one place and leads a life of meditation, penance and austerity; renounced order beyond sannyāsa, in which one chants and reads.

Babhru — one of the Yadu warriors and servant of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa.

Babhruvāhana — a son of Arjuna by Citrāṇgada, the daughter of the King of Maṇipur. Babhruvāhana engaged in battle with his father over the sacrificial horse. At that time Babhruvāhana killed Arjuna. Arjuna was later brought back to life by Ulūpī, another wife of Arjuna.

Bādarāyaṇa — See Kṛṣṇa-dvaipāyana Vyāsa.

Badarikā — (-āśrama) The holy place on the banks of the Alakanandā and Sarasvatī Rivers, among the peaks of the Himalayas, where Lord Nara-Nārāyaṇa and Dvaipāyana Vyāsa reside.

Badarikāśrama — a sacred holy place of pilgrimage in the Himālayas. The Pāṇḍavas visited here during their exile in the forest. (Vana Parva in Mahābhārata) It is the abode of Lord Nara-Nārāyaṇa, who sat under a badarī (plum) tree to perform austerities.

baddha-j˝a — a conditioned soul who distinguishes between the Lord’s body and soul.

bagh — garden.

Bāhadbala — the King of Kosala. He joined the side of the Kauravas and was killed by Abhimanyu. (Droṇa Parva in Mahābhārata)

Bāhadratha — a king of Magadha, and the father of Jarāsandha.

bahirmukha-jana — a person influenced by the external energy.

bahūdaka — the second stage of the sannyāsa order, in which one begs from door to door.

Bāhuka — the personified sins of King Vena.

Baka — (-asura) A demon who assumed the form of a crane to kill Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma. Kṛṣṇa killed him by tearing apart his beak.

Bakāsura — a demon who was shaped like a huge duck and who tried to kill Kṛṣṇa.

baksheesh — tip, donation, or bribe.

bakulaMimusops elengi, an evergreen tree of the Indian subcontinent, with small, shiny, thick, narrow, pointed leaves, straight trunk, and spreading branches. Blooms between March and July with tiny, cream-colored, aromatic flowers. The flowers retain their aroma days after being picked or having fallen and therefore symbolize unwavering devotion.

bakula — a fragrant flower very pleasing to Lord Kṛṣna.

Bāla-gopāla — The infant cowherd Kṛṣṇa.

Bāla-gopāla — Deity of Kṛṣṇa as a cowherd boy.

Baladeva Vidyābhūṣaṇa — A prominent scholarly ācārya in the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava sampradāya. He studied under Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī, by whose direction he composed Śrī Govinda-bhāṣya, the Gauḍīya commentary on Vedānta-sūtra, in the first decades of the eighteenth century.

Baladeva Vidyābhūṣaṇa — Born in the 18th century in the Baleswar district of Orissa, he was initially a learned scholar of the Madhva-sampradāya. He was converted to Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavism and became the ardent follower of Viśvanātha Cakravartī Thākura. He is especially renowned for his commentary on Vedānta-sūtra called Govinda-bhāṣya.

 Baladeva — See Balarāma.

Balagaṇḍi festival — the festival during the Ratha-yātrā procession when everyone offers various opulent foods to Lord Jagannātha at Balagaṇḍi.

Balarāma (Baladeva) — the first plenary expansion of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Kṛṣṇa. He appeared as the son of Rohiṇī and elder brother of Lord Kṛṣṇa. Also known as Balabhadra or Baladeva, present as one of the three Jagannātha deities.

 Balarāma — (Baladeva, Balabhadra) Kṛṣṇa’s elder brother, and His first plenary expansion, son of Vasudeva and Rohiṇī.

Bālhīka — a son of Pratīpa. He had two brothers Devāpi and Śantanu. He was killed by Bhīmasena during the Kurukṣetra war. (Droṇa Parva in Mahābhārata)

Bali Māhāraja — the king of the demons who gave three paces of land to Vamanadeva, the dwarf incarnation of Lord Viṣṇu, and thereby became a great devotee by surrendering everything to Him.

Bali — King of the Daitya demons, son of Virocana, and grandson of the great Vaiṣṇava Prahlāda. When Lord Vāmana tricked Bali into donating three paces of land and then with two steps covered the universe, Bali achieved perfection by surrendering everything he had to the Lord.

bāliśa — innocent and foolish like a child.

Ballal Sen — King of Bengal in the 12th century. He was the son of King Vijaya Sen, the founder of Navadvīpa. Ballal Sen's son was Laksman Sen, the sponsor of Jayadeva Gosvāmi, the author of Gītā-govinda.

Balvala — A demon who disturbed the sacrifices of sages in the Naimiṣa forest. They appealed for help to Lord Balarāma, and the Lord killed him.

bālya — Childhood.

bamboo shoots — the tender, inner part of the young shoots of the bamboo tree. They are used as an ingredient in Chinese, Japanese, and South East Asian dishes. The best quality bamboo is the first growth of shoots that sprout early in the new year and is known as winter bamboo. Fresh bamboo shoots are more or less unavailable in the West. Substitute canned bamboo shoots, available at any Asian grocer.

Bāṇa — (-asura) A thousand-armed demon, son of Bali. He was a favored devotee of Lord Siva’s. When Bāṇa’s daughter Ūṣā hid Kṛṣṇa’s grandson Aniruddha in Bāṇa’s palace, the demon arrested Aniruddha, and a battle ensued between Kṛṣṇa and Lord Śiva. Defeated, Lord Śiva begged Kṛṣṇa to spare Bāṇa’s life. Kṛṣṇa then severed all but four of Bāṇa’s arms and blessed him to become an eternal associate of Śiva.

Bāṇāsura — a thousand-armed demon slain by Lord Kṛṣṇa.

Bandhu-ha — the killer of māyā.

bandhujiva flowers — red flowers used to decorate hair.

Bandi — son of Varuṇa who was defeated in debate by Aṣṭavakra.

banyan tree — a sacred tree of the fig family with self-rooting branches.

Barbaras — low caste people born from Sabala, the Surabhi cow.

BarhiṣatSee: Prācīnabarhi

BarhiṣmānSee: Prācīnabarhi

barley — Barley (Hordeum vulgare) is an annual cereal grass widely cultivated as a food grain. The most familiar form is called pearl barley which has had the husk removed and has been steamed and polished. It is inexpensive and has a pleasant, nutty flavour. Barley is high in carbohydrate content, containing useful amounts of protein, calcium, and phosphorus, as well as small amounts of B vitamins. It is excellent in soups, stews, and side dishes, as well as the refreshing barley water. Pearl barley is available at any grocer or supermarket.

basil — the fragrant aromatic herb Ocimum basilicum, known also as sweet basil. It is a small, profusely branched bushy plant, whose tender green leaves are used worldwide, especially in Italian cuisine, where it is used mostly in dishes containing tomatoes, and in salads and soups, on pizzas, and in pasta dishes. Freshly chopped basil should be used whenever possible, as dried basil makes a poor substitute. Fresh basil is available at good greengrocer shops.

basmati rice — a superb, light-textured longgrain, aromatic rice from North India and Pakistan with a wonderful fragrance and flavour. Even served plain with a little ghee or butter, basmati rice is a treat. Dehradun basmati is the most superior in flavour and texture. basmati rice is easy to cook and although more costly than other long-grain rices, it is well worth the extra expense. Basmati rice is available at Indian, Middle Eastern, and Asian grocers.

Battle of Kurukṣetra — a battle between the Kurus and the Pāṇḍavas, which took place five thousand years ago and before which Lord Kṛṣṇa spoke Bhagavad-gītā to Arjuna.

Bāula community — one of the apa-sampradāyas, or unauthorized devotional groups.

bay leaves — the leaves of the sweet bay or laurel tree, Laurus nobilis, an evergreen member of the laurel family native to the Mediterranean region and Asia Minor. The highly aromatic leaves are thick, dark green, and glossy on the upper surface. Bay leaves used in their fresh or dried form are quite pungent with a slightly bitter, spicy flavour. They are popular in French cuisine.

BBT — The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust; the publishing house solely and exclusively authorized to publish Śrīla Prabhupāda’s books.

bean curd — see: Tofu

bel-phala — the fruit of the bel tree. It is especially dear to Lord Śiva and has great medicinal value. Its pulp is very soothing.

Benares — Vārāṇasī, holy city on the Ganges in northern India.

besansee: Chickpea flour

Bhadra — one of the wives of Vāsudeva.

Bhadrakali — another name of Durgā.

Bhagadatta — the King of Prāgjyotiṣapura, and the son of Narakāsura or Bhaumāsura. He was killed by Arjuna during the Kurukṣetra war. (Droṇa Parva in Mahābhārata)

bhagavad-bhakti — Devotional service to the Supreme Lord.

bhagavad-bhaktibhakti-yoga, devotional service to the Supreme Lord.

 Bhagavad-gītā — The essential teachings on progressive spiritual life and pure devotion to the Supreme Lord spoken by the Supreme Lord Himself, Kṛṣṇa, to His friend Arjuna at Kurukṣetra in the last moments before the great battle. Vyāsadeva included the Bhagavad-gītā in the Bhīṣma-parva of the Mahābhārata.

Bhagavad-gītā — a seven-hundred verse record of a conversation between Lord Kṛṣṇa and His disciple, Arjuna, from the Bhīṣma Parva of the Mahābhārata of Vedavyāsa. The conversation took place between two armies minutes before the start of an immense fratricidal battle. Kṛṣṇa teaches the science of the Absolute Truth and the importance of devotional service to the despondent Arjuna, and it contains the essence of all Vedic wisdom. Śrīla Prabhupāda's annotated English translation is called Bhagavad-gītā As It Is.

Bhagavān — The Personality of Godhead, who possesses in full the six opulences (bhagas) of perfection strength, fame, beauty, knowledge, renunciation, and power to control.

Bhagavān — the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who possesses in full the opulences of wealth, beauty, strength, knowledge, fame, and renunciation; an epithet of the Supreme Person.

bhāgavat-kathā — Discussions about the Supreme Lord and His devotees.

bhāgavata jīvana — the life of a devotee.

Bhāgavata PurāṇaŚrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

bhāgavata — Anything related to Bhagavān, especially the Lord’s devotee and the scripture Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

Bhāgavata — anything related to Bhagavān, the Supreme Lord, especially the devotee of the Lord and the scripture Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam;

bhāgavata-dharma — The principles of devotional service to the Supreme Lord.

Bhāgavata-dharma — the science of devotional service to the Supreme Lord; the religious principles enunciated by the Lord; the eternal function of the living being.

Bhāgavata-saptāha — a seven-day series of lectures on Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam given by professional reciters to a paying audience.

bhāgavata-vidhi — Devotional service expressed mainly through chanting the names of the Supreme Lord, serving His devotees, and studying Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam. In the modern age, bhāgavata-vidhi is recommended as the prime means of spiritual advancement, with support from the Pā˝carātric method of formal worship.

Bhāgavata-vidhi — the devotional process of serving the pure devotee and preaching Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

Bhāgavata-vidyā — transcendental knowledge of the Supreme Lord.

bhāgavatam system — spreading of Kṛṣṇa consciousness philosophy by recitation and discussion of Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

Bhāgavatam — See Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

Bhāgavatas — persons or things in relationship with the Lord.

Bhagīratha — the king who performed austerities to bring the Ganges to earth to save his ancestors.

bhāgya — good fortune.

bhāgyavān — most fortunate.

Bhairava — the terrifying aspect of Lord Śiva, who chopped off the fifth head of Brahmā.

bhaja — The imperative form of “to worship.”

bhajana — Loving devotional service to the Supreme Lord, performed favorably and free from the selfish motives of profit and liberation; a devotional hymn.

bhajana — this term generally to indicates the service and worship of the Supreme Lord executed by Vaiṣṇavas from the neophytes up to those who are fully God-realized. The main form that this service takes is the hearing and chanting of the holy name. Otherwise, the term refers to the singing of devotional songs about Kṛṣṇa, usually accompanied by musical instruments.

bhajana-kutira — a small hut or cottage where a Vaiṣṇava or saintly person performs his bhajana or personal mediation.

bhajana-kriyā — To practice devotional service under the spiritual master’s guidance.

bhajana-kuṭira — A cottage, hut, or similar place for performing one’s devotional service.

bhajanānandī — A devotee who is satisfied to cultivate devotional service for himself.

bhajanānandī — a devotee who performs his devotional activities in seclusion, not attempting to preach; a devotee who is satisfied to cultivate devotional service for himself.

bhakta — A devotee of the Supreme Lord.

bhakta — a devotee of the Lord; one who performs devotional service (bhakti).

bhakta-avatāra — an incarnation of God as a devotee.

bhakta-prāya — an “almost” devotee.

bhakta-vatsala — A description of Kṛṣṇa’s quality of loving kindness shown toward His devotees.

bhakti — Devotional service to the Supreme Lord. Bhakti in practice is the prime means of spiritual success, and perfected bhakti, pure love of God, is the ultimate goal of life.

bhakti — devotional service to the Supreme Lord; purified service of the senses of the Lord by one's own senses.

bhakti-kalpataru — the desire tree of devotional service.

bhakti-latā — Lit., “the creeper of devotional service.” A term used to liken the stages of a devotee’s growth in devotional service to the growth of a creeper growing upward.

bhakti-latā — devotional creeper.

bhakti-latā-bīja — the seed of the creeper of devotional service.

bhakti-mārga — the path of developing devotion to Kṛṣṇa.

bhakti-rasa — The ecstatic taste of personal reciprocation with the Supreme Lord in pure devotional service.

bhakti-rasa — the mellow derived from devotional service.

bhakti-rasācārya — one who knows and teaches the essence of devotional service.

Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu — lit., “The Ocean of the Pure Nectar of Devotional Service” ; a treatise on the science of devotional service (bhakti), written by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī.

Bhakti-rasāmṛta-sindhu — one of the principal works on the science of bhakti-yoga, written by Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī in the sixteenth century, a confidential associate of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. All of its conclusions are elaborately supported by reference to the Vedic literatures.

bhakti-śakti — the spiritual potency which is the essence of the pleasure potency and the eternity potency.

Bhakti-sandarbha — one of the six treatises on the science of devotional service written by Śrila Jiva Gosvāmī.

bhakti-śāstras — The scriptures, headed by Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, that teach one to render pure devotional service to the Supreme Lord.

Bhakti-śāstras — Scriptures dealing with the science of devotion.

bhakti-siddhānta-viruddha — that which is against the philosophy of acintya-bhedābheda.

bhakti-vaibhava — Understanding Kṛṣṇa’s manifestations by devotional service.

bhakti-yoga — The spiritual discipline of linking to the Supreme Lord through pure devotional service.

bhakti-yoga — the system of cultivation of bhakti, or pure devotional service, which is untinged by sense gratification or philosophical speculation.

Bhaktidevi — the personification of devotional service.

Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura Gosvāmī Mahārāja Prabhupāda — (1874-1937) the spiritual master of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda, and thus the spiritual grandfather of the present day Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement. A powerful preacher, he founded sixty four missions in India.

Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura — The spiritual master of His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda; an ācārya in the Gauḍīya-Vaiṣṇava-sampradāya.

Bhaktivedanta Institute — An organization within ISKCON which conducts scientific research and education in accordance with the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava philosophy.

Bhaktivedanta — A title conferred upon Śrīla Prabhupāda by the Gauḍīya Maṭh, meaning “one who has understood that the conclusion of Vedic scripture is bhakti (devotional service).”

Bhaktivedāntas — advanced transcendentalists who have realized the conclusion of the Vedas through devotional service.

Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura — An ācārya in the Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇava disciplic succession; the father of Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura.

Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura — (1838-1915) the great-grandfather of the present-day Kṛṣṇa consciousness movement, the spiritual master of Śrīla Gaura-kiśora dāsa Bābājī, the father of Śrila Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī, and the grand-spiritual master of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda. Śrīla Bhaktivinoda Ṭhākura was a responsible officer and a householder, yet his service to the cause of expanding the mission of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu is unique. He has written many books on the philosophy of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu.

bhakty-unmukhī sukṛti — pious activities that awaken one’s dormant Kṛṣṇa consciousness.

bhāṇḍīra — A fig tree of the banyan species.

Bhānumān — a prince of Kaliṅga. He fought on the side of the Kauravas and was killed by Bhīmasena.

Bhānusena — a son of Karṇa. He was killed by Bhīmasena during the Kurukṣetra war. (Karṇa Parva in Mahābhārata)

Bharadvāja — a great sage and the father of Droṇa.

Bharata Mahārāja — an ancient king of India and a great devotee of the Lord from whom the Pāṇḍavas descended. The son of Mahārāja Duṣyanta who renounced his kingdom and family at an early age. He became very advanced in spiritual practice, but later became attached to a pet deer causing him to take birth as a deer. In his next life, as Jaḍa Bharata, he attained spiritual perfection.

Bharata Muni — An ancient sage, author of the Nāṭya-śāstra, a standard textbook on drama and poetry.

Bharata — 1. The second brother of Lord Rāmacandra. When Bharata’s mother, Kaikeyi, obliged her husband to send Rāma into exile and give the throne to Bharata instead, Bharata placed Rāma’s shoes on the throne and ruled as His representative until Rāma returned. 2. The eldest son of Ṛṣabhadeva. He was close to achieving pure love of God but became attracted to a helpless deer and so himself had to be born a deer. Then once again he was born as the seemingly dull brāhmaṇa Jaḍa Bharata. In this third life he instructed King Rahūgana and achieved ultimate perfection. 3. The son of Duṣmanta (Duṣyanta) and Śakuntalā.

Bharata — half-brother of Lord Rāma, he ruled Ayodhya when Lord Rāma was in exile.

Bhārata-bhūmi — ancient India.

Bhārata-varṣa — The planet earth, named after Bharata the son of Ṛṣabhadeva. In a more restricted sense, greater India.

Bhārata-varṣa — a name for the earth (now for India), derived from King Bharata, a great king who was the eldest son of Lord Ṛṣabhadeva.

Bhāratas — The royal descendants of Bharata the son of Duṣmanta. The Kurus belong to this dynasty.

BhāratīSee: Sarasvatī

Bhauma — (-asura) A demon born of Lord Viṣṇu’s incarnation Varāha and Bhūmi, the goddess earth. He is also known as Narakāsura. After causing havoc in Indra’s heaven and on earth, he was killed by the original Viṣṇu, Kṛṣṇa.

bhauma-ijya-dhīḥ — accepting something to be spiritual when it is actually material.

bhauma-vṛndāvana — Vṛndāvana on earth.

bhāva — Ecstasy in love of God. Various kinds of bhāva join together as the components of prema.

bhāva — the stage of transcendental love experienced after transcendental affection; manifestation of ecstatic symptoms in the body of a devotee.

bhāva-bhakti — the platform of purified goodness when one’s heart melts in devotional service; the first stage of love of Godhead.

bhava-roga — The disease of material existence.

bhava-roga — material miseries or diseases.

bhava-sāgara — the ocean of repeated birth and death.

Bhaviṣya Purāṇa — one of the eighteen Purāṇas. It was spoken by Lord Brahmā and concerns future events and religious rites and observances.

Bhaviṣya-uttara Purāṇa — the last section of the Bhaviṣya Purāṇa.

bhāvuka — sentimental; can also mean advanced in the knowledge of spiritual rasas.

bhaya — fear.

bhayānaka-rasa — the indirect relationship of fear.

bhedābheda — The doctrine of simultaneous difference and nondifference between God and His energies. Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu taught a version of this philosophy qualified as acintya ( “inconceivable”).

Bhīma — (-sena) The second and strongest of the five Pāṇḍava brothers, a great club fighter, voracious eater, and intolerant punisher of wrongdoers. In the Battle of Kurukṣetra he fulfilled his vow to kill Duryodhana and all the Kaurava brothers.

Bhīma — the second son of Pāṇḍu and Kuntī. Actually, his father was Vāyu, because Pāṇḍu had been cursed not being able to conceive children. By mantra Kuntī called Vāyu and Bhīma was born. He was known for his strength and strong appetite.

bhindi — ladies' finger, okra.

bhinna-rūpa-sandhi — the meeting of contradictory ecstasies.

Bhīṣma — The son of Santanu and the sacred Gaṅgā. He was one of the twelve mahājanas, the great authorities on Vedic knowledge. As the elder of the Kuru warriors, he led Duryodhana’s forces in battle until felled by the arrows of Arjuna. He passed away gloriously at his own chosen moment in the presence of Kṛṣṇa.

Bhīṣmadeva — the grandfather of the Pāṇḍavas, and the most powerful and venerable warrior on the Battlefield of Kurukṣetra. The noble general respected as the “grandfather” of the Kuru dynasty. He is recognized as one of the twelve mahājanas, authorities on devotional service to the Lord. He was given a boon to leave his body any time he pleased, consequently he decided to leave while laying on a bed of arrows in full view of Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa.

Bhīṣmaka — The king of Vidarbha and father of Rukmiṇī, Kṛṣṇa’s first wife.

Bhīṣmaka — the King of Vidarbha and father of Śrīmātī Rukmiṇī.

bhoga — material sense enjoyment; or, food before it has been offered to the Deity.

bhoga-mandira — the place where the Deity’s food is kept.

bhogī — sense gratifier.

bhogonmukhī — pious activities that bestow material opulence.

bhrama — false knowledge or mistakes.

Bhṛgu — One of the mind-born sons of Brahmā. He founded a prominent family of Vedic sages.

Bhṛgu — the most powerful of the sages born directly from Brahmā.

Bhṛgus — The family of Vedic sages and brāhmaṇas founded by Bhṛgu Muni.

bhṛtya — the servants of the body, namely the senses.

bhū — the creative energy of the cosmic creation.

bhū-dhāraṇa-śakti — the power to hold up the planets within the universe.

Bhubaneswar — a holy place in the district of Puri, Orissa, that is sacred to Lord Śiva and that was visited by Lord Caitanya. It is glorified in detail in the Skanda Purāṇa.

Bhudevī — consort of Lord Viṣṇu.

bhukti — material enjoyment.

Bhūmi — The earth, and the goddess who presides over it.

Bhūmi — Mother Earth

Bhūr — (Bhū-maṇḍala, Bhūrloka) The middle region of the universe, which includes the planet earth.

Bhūr — the lower material planets.

Bhūriśrava — one of the three sons of Somadatta, a King of the Kuru dynasty. He was killed by Sātyaki during the great Kurukṣetra battle. (Droṇa Parva in Mahābhārata)

bhūti — opulence.

Bhuvar — the middle material planets.

bībhatsa-rasa — the indirect relationship of abomination.

Bihar — a state in northwestern India.

Bila-svarga — the subterranean heavens.

Bila-svargas — The subterranean heavenly planets, where specially empowered demons and other creatures enjoy exceptional power, health, and opulence, unaware that after a fixed duration of life they too will die.

Bilvamaṅgala Ṭhākura — A great Vaiṣṇava poet, also known as Līlāśuka. He was the author of Kṛṣṇa-karṇāmṛta, a book rediscovered and revered by Lord Caitanya.

Bilvamaṅgala Ṭhākura — a great devotee-author, whose works include the Kṛṣṇa-karṇāmṛta, the confidential pastimes of Lord Kṛṣṇa.

bimbaMomordica coccinia, a vine with bright red fruit often used to describe the color of lips.

bindi — A red dot worn on the forehead by Hindu women, signifying wedded status.

Birnagar — a town just south of Krishnanagar in the West Bengal district of Nadia. In ancient times the Ganges flowed past this town making it a prosperous river port. Once, the prince Srimanta Sandagar was sailing his fleet of ships up the Ganges to Birnagar and a violent storm arose. To save himself and his fleet, he prayed to Ulācaṇḍi, a wife of Lord Śiva. The fleet was saved, and the prince instituted her worship at this site. The town of Birnagar was thus also known as Ulā-grāma, the birthplace of Ṭhākura Bhaktivinoda.

biryani — mild fancy rice, sometime with a sauce.

black beans — Soya beans fermented with malt and salt. They have a strong, salty flavour. Dry in texture, they keep for a long time in the refrigerator. They are popular in Chinese and Indonesian cooking, especially as the basis for black bean sauce. They're available at Chinese and South East Asian grocers.

black cumin seeds — Often confused with nigella or kalonli seeds, which are tear-drop shaped. Black cumin seeds (Cumin nigrum) are blacker and thinner than cumin seeds. They are exclusively used in North Indian cuisine, especially in Kashmir. They're available at well-stocked Indian grocers.

black pepper — (see Pepper)

black salt — a reddish-gray variety of salt with a distinct “hard-boiled egg-yolk” flavour. Black salt or kala namak, as it is known in Indian cuisine, is a major ingredient in the spice blend chat masala. Sprinkle black salt in Scrambled Curd. It is available at Indian grocers.

bloop — the sound of the soul falling into the ocean of material suffering; commonly used in ISKCON to describe someone who leaves the organization.

bo (bodhi) tree — the tree under which Lord Buddha attained enlightenment.

bok choy — the common Cantonese name for Chinese cabbage. These small cabbages, used in Chinese cooking, have dark green leaves and wide white stalks joined near the base of the stem. They resemble a miniature Swiss chard (silverbeet). The smaller the individual cabbage, the more delicate the flavour. They're available at Chinese grocers.

bolo — The imperative form of “to chant” or “to say” (Bengali).

borlotti beans — one of the most popular varieties of “legumi secchi”, legumes, in Italian cuisine. They are from the same family as red kidney beans and vary in colour considerably from  pale pink to dark red. They are always speckled. Borlotti beans should, like all dried beans, be soaked in cold water overnight, rinsed well, and then boiled in fresh water until tender. They are delicious in soups such as Minestrone. If borlotti beans are unavailable, substitute red kidney beans.

brahma śāpa — a brāhmaṇa’s curse.

Brahmā — The first finite living being in the material creation. He was born from the lotus growing from the navel of Garbhodaka-śāyī Viṣṇu. At the beginning of creation, and again at the start of each day of his life, Brahmā engineers the appearance of all the species and the planets on which they reside. He is the first teacher of the Vedas and the final material authority to whom the demigods resort when belabored by their opponents.

Brahmā — the first created living being and secondary creator of the material universe. Directed by Lord Viṣṇu, he creates all life forms in the universes. He also rules the mode of passion. Twelve of his hours equals 4,320,000,000 earth-years, and his life span is more than 311 trillion of our years.

brahma-bandhu — One born in a brāhmaṇa family but lacking brahminical qualification.

brahma-bandhu — one born in a brāhmaṇa family but lacking brahminical qualification.

brahma-bhūta — the liberated or spiritual platform of consciousness.

brahma-bhūta — the joyful state of being freed from material contamination. One in this state is characterized by transcendental happiness, and he engages in the service of the Supreme Lord; liberation.

brahma-jij˝āsā — inquiry into the Absolute Truth; spiritual inquiry into one's own identity.

brahma-j˝āna — knowledge of the Supreme.

brahma-j˝ānī — an impersonalist scholar.

brahma-jyoti — The spiritual effulgence of the Supreme Lord’s body. It pervades the space between the spiritual planets of the eternal kingdom of God, and it is conceived of as His impersonal aspect. Those who achieve impersonal liberation enter it, apparently losing their personal identities.

brāhma-muhūrta — The hour and a half just before sunrise, a time-span considered the most auspicious for daily spiritual practices.

brāhma-muhūrta — the auspicious period of the day just before dawn, from one and a half hours to fifty minutes before sunrise. It is especially favorable for spiritual practices.

Brahma-rākṣasa — a man-eating demon who was a fallen brāhmaṇa in his last life; the ghost of a sinful brāhmana.

brahma-randhra — the hole in the skull through which the perfected yogī quits his body .

Brahma-saṁhitā — Lord Brahmā’s prayers glorifying the Supreme Lord.

Brahma-saṁhitā — a very ancient Sanskrit scripture recording the prayers of Brahmā offered to the Supreme Lord, Govinda, recovered from a temple in South India by Lord Caitanya.

brahma-satra — meditating on the Supreme Lord always.

brahma-saukhya — spiritual happiness, which is unobstructed and eternal.

Brahma-sūtra — the Vedānta-sūtra.

brahma-tejas — the potency of a brāhmaṇa.

brahma-upāsaka — a worshiper of the impersonal Brahman.

brahma-vādī — A seeker of impersonal realization of the Supreme.

Brahma-vaivarta Purāṇa — one of the eighteen Purāṇas. It contains prayers and invocations addressed to Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, as well as descriptions of His transcendental pastimes with Srīmatī Rādhārāṇī and the other cowherd girls of Vṛndāvana.

brahma-vidyā — transcendental knowledge.

brahma-yaj˝a — studying the Vedas.

brahmacārī — A celibate boy in the student phase of spiritual life, receiving education at the residence of a spiritual master.

brahmacārī — a celibate student under the care of a spiritual master. One in the first order of spiritual life; In the Vedic social order, the student class who strictly accept the vow of celibacy, in the case of brāhmaṇas, up to the age of 25, at which time they may marry or continue the life of celibacy; a celibate student of a spiritual master.

brahmacāriṇī — Feminine variant of brahmacārī.

brahmacarya — celibate student life; the first order of Vedic spiritual life; the vow of strict abstinence from sex indulgence.

Brahmajyoti — the impersonal bodily effulgence emanating from the transcendental body of the Supreme Lord Kṛṣṇa, which constitutes the brilliant illumination of the spiritual sky.

Brahmaloka — The highest material planet, the residence of Lord Brahmā and his associates. Also known as Satyaloka.

Brahmaloka — the highest planet of the universe, that of the demigod Lord Brahmā.

Brahman — The impersonal, all-pervasive aspect of the Supreme Truth; the transcendental sound of the Vedas.

Brahman — (1) the infinitesimal spiritual individual soul; (2) the impersonal, all-pervasive aspect of the Supreme; (3) the Supreme Personality of Godhead; (4) the mahat-tattva, or total material substance.

brāhmaṇa thread — A loop of six to nine threads, worn around the neck and torso of a male brāhmaṇa, used in chanting mantras.

Brāhmaṇa thread — a multistranded thread worn by brāhmaṇas across the left shoulder and chest.

brāhmaṇa — A member of the most intelligent class among the four occupational divisions in the varṇāśrama social system.

Brāhmaṇa — a member of the intellectual, priestly class; a person wise in Vedic knowledge, fixed in goodness and knowledgeable of Brahman, the Absolute Truth; One of the four orders of occupational life, brāhmaṇa, kṣatriya, vaiśya and śūdra. The brāhmaṇas are the intellectual class and their occupation is hearing Vedic literature, teaching Vedic literature, learning deity worship and teaching deity worship, receiving charity and giving charity.

brahmānanda — The bliss enjoyed from impersonal realization of the Supreme.

Brahmānanda — the spiritual bliss derived from impersonal Brahman realization.

Brāhmaṇas — The śruti texts that explain the ritualistic sections of the original Vedas.

Brahmāṇḍa Purāṇa — one of the eighteen Purāṇas. It was revealed by Lord Brahmā and contains knowledge about this brahmāṇḍa, or spherical universe and future millennia.

Brahmāṇḍa — the material universe.

Brahmāṇḍa-bhramaṇa — wandering up and down throughout the universe.

Brāhmaṇī — the wife of a brāhmana.

Brahmaṇya-deva — the Supreme Lord, who is the protector of brahminical culture.

brahmarṣi — A sage among brāhmaṇas.

Brahmarṣi — a title meaning “sage among the brāhmaṇas.”

brahmāstra — An atomic weapon powered by mantra, carried by arrow, and able to be accurately aimed at a single person.

brahmāstra — a nuclear weapon produced by chanting a mantra, more powerful than many atomic bombs. It could be used only on a person of equal or superior strength. This weapon was given by Droṇa to Arjuna.

Brahmavādīs — impersonalists among the transcendentalists; those who are absorbed in the thought of impersonal Brahman.

Brahmoism — The philosophy the Brhama-samaj, a reformist Hindu movement.

Brajbhasah — dialect of local spoken language in the Vṛndāvana area.

Brajmandal (Vraja-mandala) — The circular area which encompasses Braj and designated by the pilgrimage path through the area’s sacred sites, each a scene of one of Krsna’s exploits.

bran — the tough outer pericarp layer of the wheat grain. It is removed together with the germ during milling to produce flour. It is a rich source of protein, B vitamins, phosphorus, and, of course, fibre.

Bṛghu — the leader of the sages in the universe.

bṛhad-mṛdaṅga — lit., “the great drum.” A phrase coined by Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura that refers to the power of publishing books as an instrument for preaching.

Bṛhan-nāradīya Purāṇa — one of the eighteen Purāṇas, or Vedic historical scriptures.

Bṛhaspati — The spiritual master of Indra and the demigods, and ruler of the planet Jupiter. He is a son of the sage Aṅgirā and grandson of Brahmā. His son is Uddhava, the great devotee of Kṛṣṇa.

Bṛhaspati — the spiritual master of King Indra and chief priest for the demigods.

Brijbasi — (var. sp., Vrajavasi) A resident of Vṛndāvana (Vraja). This spelling also refers to the company which produces the typical religious posters and calendar art seen everywhere in India.

Brijbāsi — inhabitant of Vṛndāvana.

BTGBack to Godhead magazine, the magazine of the Hare Kṛṣṇa movement.

bubhukṣus — those who desire to enjoy the material world.

buckwheat — Buckwheat is not a grain in the botanical sense, as it is related to dock and rhubarb, although some cookbooks classify it as such. Native to China, Nepal, and Siberia, it is rich in iron and contains 11% protein and almost the entire range of B-complex vitamins. Buckwheat is available in the form of the whole seeds, called groats, finely cracked groats, called grits roasted whole groats, called kasha; and flour. Buckwheat is popular in Russian and Jewish cooking. It is available at health food stores and specialty grocers.

Buddha — incarnation of Kṛṣṇa, the founder of Buddhism who lived during the 5th century B.C., and appeared to bewilder atheists and dissuade them from performing unnecessary animal sacrifices.

buddhi-yoga — another term for bhakti-yoga (devotional service to Kṛṣṇa), indicating that it represents the highest use of intelligence (buddhi).

buddhi-yoga(buddhi — intelligence + yoga — mystic elevation) another term for bhakti-yoga (devotional service to Kṛṣṇa), indicating that it represents the highest use of intelligence by surrendering it to the will of the Supreme Lord. Action in Kṛṣṇa consciousness is buddhi-yoga, for that is the highest intelligence.

bulgur wheat — a grain product made by par-boiling and drying whole wheat kernels and crushing them into various sizes. Bulgur is popular in Middle Eastern cuisine, especially in the famous tabbouleh salad. It has a chewy texture and a pleasant nutty taste, and is rich in protein calcium, phosphorus and iron. Bulgur wheat is available at health food shops and Middle Eastern grocers.

buttermilk — real buttermilk is the liquid residue after cream has been churned into butter. However, the buttermilk referred to here is cultured buttermilk, which is low-fat milk cultured in a similar way to yogurt to produce a pleasant, mild-tasting dairy product the consistency of light cream. Cultured buttermilk is delicious in drinks, soups, and vegetable dishes.


Krishna and Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra