I first saw somebody doing mudras for meditation while walking in my local park in 2005. A young woman, who looked like she recently came from China, was doing her yoga and meditation practice on a blanket on the grass. As part of her meditation she was using mudras or hand gestures. I was fascinated, and watched her without trying to look like I was staring.
When I went home I looked for any information I could find on mudras on the web and also in our home library. Surprisingly we did have a book that had mudras in it called “Ashtanga Yoga Primer,” by Baba Hari Dass. Baba Hari Dass is the silent guru up at Mount Madonna Center in the mountains outside of Gilroy in California. If you have never been there, it is a wonderful retreat center.
I set myself the task of memorizing these mudras and using them in my meditation practice. One may ask why such a thing would be valuable. The reason I find it valuable is that it gives the mind something to focus on during meditation. Having a focus point helps keep the mind from wandering to its customary thoughts.
I usually combine the mudras with other meditation tools when I use them. These tools are watching the breath and chanting mantras silently to myself. With three focus points even the most restless mind can be quieted and centered.
One of the side benefits I have found from using the mudras is that it taught me that by focusing on my hands at any time of the day I can recenter myself and quiet my mind. I can do this when I am riding a bicycle, washing the dishes, cooking dinner or holding my child or my husband’s hand.
Mudras are a tool for building awareness and bringing one into the moment. I hope that you enjoy the video demonstration of the mudras.
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