What are mudras?
Mudras are an ancient system of manipulating the energy currents of the body through the positioning of the hands and fingers. For instance, one might place the thumb and index fingers of both hands together in meditation as a way of improving concentration and memory skills. The word mudra means “seal,” “gesture,” or “mark.” There are thousands upon thousands of different ways to manipulate the hands, fingers, and thumb. For the mathematical nerds among us, if we were to take into consideration the various combinations of mudras possible with the ten hand digits, the number is ten factorial (10 x 9 x 8 x 7 x 6 x 5 x 4 x 3 x 2x 1) or 3,628,800 potential gestures. No doubt, some esoteric yogis understand at least several million of them! As a mystical practice, there is endless potential for increasing one’s spiritual powers.
What do mudras do?
Mudras are ways of controlling energetic human forces. It is the basis of acupuncture, Qigong, Healing Touch, pranayama, Reiki, and the like. The human energetic field is a vast mystery which involves our observable physical energies as well as the subtle forces known to mystics.
Scientists say that the human body produces about 100 watts of energy. That’s a significant amount of power. (Did you know that amateur radio operators routinely talk to people around the world using broadcast transmitters of less than 100 watts?) We too, can transmit energies to others across the globe – such as physical and distance healing. Those who learn to master the bodies energy currents can do seemingly miraculous things.
One uses the energy for cleansing, healing, protection, communication, astral travel, and many other mystical practices. The ancient yogis referred to these powers as Siddhis. We would think of them as extraordinary. Some of these include levitation, mind reading, clairvoyance, psychokinesis, the ability to disappear from human sight, and the like. We encourage you to conduct your own web search and learn more about these superpowers.
Obviously, we cannot talk about all of the 3.6 million mudras! What we can do is simplify the discussion by giving you some fundamental knowledge and encouraging you to experiment with this tremendous power. An easy way to streamline this mystical practice is to think of each of the fingers as belonging to one of the five elemental forces of space, earth, fire, air, and water.
- Thumb — Space or cosmic energy
- Pointer Finger — Air or the faculties of mind and thinking.
- Middle Finger — Fire or energetic forces of body and nature.
- Ring Finger — Water or the emotional energies.
- Little Finger — Earth or energies related to the body, worldly goods, and matter.
*We should point out that different systems of yoga will assign various different meanings to each of the fingers. Don’t let the disagreements keep you from trying this practice. In your own experience, you may well find a personal system that works differently than those on the internet. For those who know how to use a pendulum, you might consult its guidance in these matters.
Just knowing these five things is enough to get started in your mystical practice of using mudras. For instance, when you need mental clarity and the ability to focus, consider holding your thumb and pointer fingers together. In your meditation, choose to position your hands in a particular mudra as you meditate upon your chosen subject.
The small chart created below could include as many as one-hundred columns if we so wished. It demonstrates how one might associate a mudra with some desired outcome – such as increasing chakra energy, health improvement, or understanding messages from the Tarot.
|Earth — Little Finger||Root (passion and creativity)||Stomach, spleen, mouth, muscles||Pentacles (earthly and material goods)|
|Fire — Middle Finger||Solar Plexus, Throat (body energies and speaking)||Small intestines, heart, blood vessels||Wands (physical and creative energies)|
|Water — Ring Finger||Sacral (sexual energies and emotions)||Bladder, kidneys, ears, bones||Cups (emotional and psychic energies)|
|Air — Pointer Finger||Heart (compassion)||Respiration, blood||Swords (mental skills, focus, and clarity)|
Mudras are Powerful
Mystics have long understood the importance of managing their physical energies as well as their mental frequencies. In many ways, medical science is just now acknowledging this important aspect of human health and well-being. The ability to control one’s energetic forces is a discipline in and of itself. It is certainly a worthy study for all mystics.
It takes time to build mudras into your practice and for them to become second nature. Like taking a deep cleansing breath, mudras have the power to reprogram our physical forms. As we become more skilled in their use, our body and its energy forces respond more quickly to our spiritual needs.
For more information about mudras, we encourage you to visit these websites.