What turns a regular (or non) yogi into a super yogi? Mudras. Gestures, usually done with the hands, that look really cool and can feel extraordinary. Hyper-charge your meditations with these simple, yet profound, additions.
“I can change the world, with my own two hands.
Make a better place, with my own two hands.
Make a kinder place, oh with my, oh with my own two hands.”
- Ben Harper
A mudra, or “seal,” actively joins (seals) two parts of the hand or fingers. They create pathways, facilitate the flow of energy through the body, and enhance one’s journey within.
The hands are covered in acupressure and reflexology points, which may invoke the healing effects of some mudras, whilst others deepen our connection with nature.
Ancient in origin, most of the mudras used today come from Hindu and Buddhist traditions. Mudras can be used anytime, but they’re often most effective when incorporated into meditation, relaxation or other forms of practice.
Magnificent Mudras to Begin Using Now
Prayer/Namaste | Anjali Mudra
Press the palms of the left and right hands firmly against one another, in front of the heart. In addition to being a salutation, a prayer, recognition and acknowledgment of equality in another, this Mudra is thought to have a calming effect as it brings the left and right sides of the brain into harmony, and the solar and lunar energies into equilibrium.
Knowledge | Gyan Mudra
Unite the tip of your thumb with the tip of your forefinger. Extend the rest of the fingers out straight. With the backs of your hands resting on your thighs or knees, palms facing up, this becomes Chin Mudra – signifying that you are prepared to receive, wisdom, energy, light, whatever it is you need. With the palms resting down on the legs, you’ve invoked Jnana Mudra – for grounding, and to accept the knowledge that the practice provides. Both variations symbolize unity and connection. Additionally, reflexology says that the brain is located in the tip of the thumb. The pressure of the forefinger helps calm the mind.
Power | Prana Mudra
The yogic gun – extend the forefinger and middle finger, curl the ring finger and pinky in toward the palm and cover their tips with the thumb. Sometimes touted as yoga’s “shot of espresso,” Prana Mudra initiates a quick pick-me-up and invokes “the energy or spirit of life.” This vital Mudra helps to switch on inactive energy in the body.