Mudras for Harmonizing  the  Elements

It’s certainly not an untruth when we hear people say that our ancestors were far ahead of their times!

Our ancestors figured out routes by reading the stars and constellations. Sushruta (800BC) was the founding father of surgery way back when the rest of the world had no idea about ‘shalya tantra’ or surgical science.

Yogic wisdom too comes down to us from our far ancestors. When ‘Shiv’, believed to be the very first yogi, or the Adiyogi, taught the seven saints (Saptarishis) about yoga, he also taught them the art and science of Mudras. ‘Mudras’ are symbolic hand gestures that can facilitate the flow of energy within the body and harmonize the elements within. Take the plunge and join Online Ashtanga Yoga Classes, and before you do, educate yourself on Yoga Mudras.

The Correlation Between Mudras and the Five Elements

According to ancient Vedic wisdom, our health is literally in our hands. This is because our fingers and our thumbs represent the five major elements, which the entire universe is composed of. These are also called the ‘Panchamahabhootas’ Disease arises when these five elements namely, Earth Water Fire Air and Ether slip out of balance.

These elements; Earth (Prithvi), Water (Jal), Fire (Agni), Air (Vayu), and Ether (Akaash). constitute the environment all around us. The ‘Earth’ element is all the solid structures of the hills and mountains, valleys, gorges and plateaus, rocks and gravel on our planet. The large water bodies, our seas and oceans, rivers, ponds and lakes represent the water element. The most dynamic source of the fire element in nature is the Sun, the giver of heat and light energy which sustains human life. The wind, breeze and air we breathe is the air element in our world. Ether, the space element is the most subtle of all. It’s very essence is emptiness and endlessness. Every human body is a composition of these five elements bringing home the truth that we humans, the microcosm, are a part of the outer environment, the macrocosm. Mudras are powerful tools that can increase or decrease the presence of these elements within us, with the aim of correcting any imbalance and enhancing harmony and balance within the body.

Prithvi Mudra: The Earth Gesture

Benefits: Stability, Strength, Grounding

Prithvi Mudra is formed by joining the tips of our thumbs and ring fingers together while keeping the other fingers straight. This hand position strengthens the Earth element in the body, promoting stability and resilience. The ‘Earth’ element in our body constitutes our strong musculature and skeletal structure. ‘Prithvi Mudra’ is particularly beneficial for improving physical strength, enhancing vitality, and fostering a sense of grounding.

Jal Mudra: The Water Gesture

Benefits: Fluidity, Emotional Balance, Hydration

Jal Mudra, or the Water Mudra, also called “Varuna Mudra’ is formed by joining the tips of the little finger and the thumb while keeping the other three fingers extended. This hand position aims to balance the Water element within us, which governs the body’s fluids and emotional states. This mudra is effective in maintaining hydration, enhancing skin health, and promoting emotional stability.

Surya Mudra: The Sun Gesture

Benefits: Metabolism, Energy, Warmth

Surya Mudra is performed by placing the tip of the ring finger at the base of the thumb and then curling the thumb down and pressing on the ring finger. The other three fingers are kept stretched straight. The Sun Mudra, is associated with the Fire element, which is crucial for digestion, metabolism, and energy production. Practicing this mudra can boost metabolism, increase body warmth, and aid in weight management.

Vayu Mudra: The Air Gesture

Benefits: Movement, Relaxation, Pain Relief
Vayu Mudra, or the Air Mudra, is performed by placing the tip of the Index finger at the base of the thumb and pressing down on the bent finger with the thumb while the other three fingers remain extended out. Vayu Mudra balances the Air element, which controls bodily movements and nervous functions. This mudra is particularly useful for relieving pain, reducing anxiety, and promoting relaxation.

Akaash Mudra: The Space Gesture

Benefits: Spaciousness, Mental Clarity, Connection

Akaash Mudra, or the Space Mudra is formed by joining the tip of the middle finger to the thumb tip and keeping the other fingers stretched out straight. This mudra harmonizes the Ether element, which represents space and connectivity within the body. This mudra is beneficial for enhancing mental clarity, expanding consciousness, and fostering a sense of openness.

Conclusion:

Mudras are simple yet profound practices that can significantly influence the body’s elemental balance. Contemplating on which aspect of our body is out of balance and then intelligently using appropriate ‘Mudras’ to pull back to a state of equilibrium is how mudras can be used effectively. Making use of Prithvi Mudra, Jal Mudra, Surya Mudra, Vayu Mudra, or Akaash Mudra can lead to improved physical health, emotional stability, and spiritual growth.  If you want to know more about mudras and are looking for a yoga teacher offering Online Ashtanga Vinyasa Classes, feel free to join my sessions at Yoga With Sapna today! 

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