A mudra is a position of the hands that seals and guides energy flow and reflexes to the brain. All mudras aim to strike a balance in the body, to restore health and promote spirituality.
The hands may provide an energy map of our health and consciousness. Each area of the hand connects to a particular part of the body or brain, representing different emotions and behaviors.
In ceremonies, particularly in Buddhism, a mudra acts as a kind of visual „seal”, affirming a mystical or magical utterance or vow, such as a supplication to protect from evil. A mudra usually accompanies the spiritual utterance known as the mantra.
The mudra is used for meditation. Jnana comes from the Sanskrit word „Guyan” or „Gyan”, meaning wisdom. In Ayurveda, this mudra is known as Vayu-vardhak mudra. If the fingertips face down, it’s known as gyan or chin mudra, whereas if the fingertips face up towards the sky, it’s called jnana mudra.
According to ancient yogic teachings, our body is made up of 5 elements: air, fire, water, earth and ether. All the mind and health related problems are born due to the imbalance in these five elements. Practicing this mudra helps to balance the air element in the body.
How is jnana mudra or gyan mudra formed?
Touch the tip of your index finger with the tip of your thumb. The other 3 fingers you may keep straight, just free, or even slightly bent. Do this with both the left and right hand, and hold for at least a few minutes.
There is no particular time duration for this mudra. You can practice it standing, sitting or lying on the bed, wherever and whenever you have time. Using this mudra one can sit in meditation for a longer duration, as it reduces the distractions arising in the mind.
Holding the thumb and index finger together represents the supreme reality. The 3 extended fingers symbolize the 3 traits (gunas), namely rajas (activity), tamas (lethargy) and sattva (harmony and balance).
- strengthens the heart and improves its efficiency;
- helps with insomnia and mental peace;
- increases memory power and sharpens the brain;
- helps relieve migraines;
- stimulates the Muladhara chakra, easing tension and depression
Mudras can be practiced along with other treatments and they do not conflict with any other kind of therapy. On the contrary, a mudra helps the diseased person to be cured quickly.
Practicing a mudra will give beneficial results even if you do not conceptually believe in this therapy.