The word "Mudra" means energy seal. Hand Mudras are physical actions that directly effect universal energy/pranic energy within the astral and physical body. These Mudras are used widely in the following fields
- Dance (to express feelings and emotions)
- Rituals (during worship and Yagnas to invoke God)
- Hatha Yoga (to help stabilise the mind)
What do they denote?
Based on the Science of Mudra, the 5 fingers of our hands represents the 5 natural elements.
- The thumb indicates Fire/Agni
- The index finger indicates Air/Vaayu
- The middle finger indicates Space/Akash
- The ring finger indicates Earth/Adi Parashakthi or Aditi)
- The little finger indicates Water/Jala
Chin Mudra (Gesture of Consciousness)
Stretch and relax the hands and place gently on top of the knees or thighs, place thumb nail to index nail and let other fingers softly extend.
Such mudras are difficult to hold simply because you have to stay physically still in both body and mind. It will invent disturbance to try and somehow make you move out of it.
Try to resist this, unless the source of disturbance really warrants it (like a sobbing child who
needs your attention immediately, for instance!)
Yoga instructor Sam Anand in Chin Mudra
How to practice Chin Mudra?
- Sit comfortably in any meditative posture (Vajrasana/ Padmasana) or even on a chair.
- Let the hands relax in Chin Mudra.
- Sit with back straight.
- Shut eyes. Continue to breathe relaxed breaths initially, lets say for 5 minutes.
You can time yourself with a soft timer. When this time is over, sit still for a few more seconds, rub your palms together and cup them gently on your eyelids before opening them.
How to breathe using Chin Mudra in meditative postures?
(In Vajrasana, simply let the hands rest on the knees in Chin Mudra)
- Simply breathe letting go, relaxing your mind, body and breathing.
- Inhale right up to the top of your lungs and fully exhale.
- Now, inhale (Purakam) gently (not forcefully) up to 4 counts.
- Relax your chest and hold the breath (Kumbakam) up to 16 counts.
- Softly exhale (Rechakam) up to 8 counts.
The usual ratio of retention (holding breath) is 1:4:2 (inhale:retain:exhale), in other words retain your breath in a proportion of x4 to your inhalation and exhale in a proportion of x2 to your inhalataion, however beginners can just practice at 1:1:1 ratio.
Why practice Chin Mudra?
- It makes Prana flow evenly throughout the body.
- Reduces fatigue.
- Removes ego, anger & negative thoughts and flushes the mind with positivity.
- Keeps mind calm and balanced.