Are you suffering from indigestion or a lack of appetite? Or perhaps you feel like no matter how much you eat, you’re still hungry? Mudras are powerful tools to assist meditation and introspection, and they can be used to help control our mind — our thoughts, feelings, and desires. In this article, we will discuss some essential mudras that will balance your digestive fire (Agni) and restore a sense of health and well-being to your mind and body
What are Mudras?
Mudras are hand gestures that activate a certain element or energy in the body. The five fingers represent the five elements. The energy activation point lies on the fingertips. When the fingertips are connected, the subtle energy in your body gets activated. The thumb represents the fire element. This element represents agni within the body, and it serves to activate all the other elements.
The index finger represents air, middle finger ether, ring finger earth and the little finger represents the water element.
When different hand formations, or mudras, are formed, the combination of subtle elements has a powerful effect on the mind and body.
How Can Mudras Heal?
There is a spiritual force that mediates our mind-body connection. Ayurveda says that when the elements in our body are balanced, our bodies and minds are healthy. Whenever imbalance arises, we can attain balance by activating specific elements using various mudras. Acupuncture is another method that involves activating specific points in the body and improving the flow of energy. Mudras act in a similar way. The tips of our fingers act like electrical potential points, and when the mudras are formed, they create an electrical circuit that circulates energy throughout the body. As this energy circulates, we feel a healing effect. The most astonishing fact is that our brain uses about 60% of its surface area to process the movements and sensations of the hands.
RECOMMENDED: For a complete guide to the many mudras and their benefits, check out Healing Mudras: Yoga of the Hands by Yogi Nataraj.
#1: The Samana Mudra
Touch the tips of all the fingers as shown, and carefully press the tips until you can feel the pulse of some of the fingers. Keep your fingers pointing upwards. Meditate on the gentle flame gently burning upwards in the belly as you practice this mudra. Practice the Samana Mudra for 10-15 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Samana Mudra?
The Samana mudra is useful for the following:
- Improving digestion
- Relieving anxiety
- Alleviating depression
- Increasing mental fortitude
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. The Samana Mudra improves digestion and pacifies the mind, thus relieving anxiety, depression, and other mental ailments. This powerful mudra balances all the elements within the body.
The next mudra we will cover is the Surya Mudra:
#2: Surya Mudra
First Fold the ring finger and cover it with the thumb. Make sure that the tip of the ring finger touches the fleshy part of the base of the thumb. This mudra activates the fire element. As we practice this mudra, we must meditate on the Manipura chakra, or the navel chakra. Concentration brings about activation. Practice this mudra for about 15-20 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Surya Mudra?
The Surya mudra is useful for the following:
- Stimulating digestion
- Calming stomach upset
- Preventing diabetes
- Maintaining body temperature
- Improving vision
- Gaining energy
- Energizing the mind and reducing depression / lethargy
- Stimulating the thyroid gland
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. The Surya mudra increases the fire element and decreases the earth element in the body. The fire element is related to vision, improving fire in the body, and addressing visual problems. Since Agni is the main component of Pitta dosha, this mudra improves pitta, enhancing digestion, and reducing fat in the body, which in turn helps regulate your body weight. For all constipation-related issues, Surya mudra is very effective.
The next mudra we will cover is the Linga Mudra.
#3: The Linga Mudra
Clasp both the hands in front of your stomach area. Lift up the right thumb and make sure the part palms below the thumb of both hands touch each other firmly. As you hold the hands in this way meditate on the navel chakra. In sometime you should be able to see heat generated. This activates the navel chakra Hold this mudra for 10-15 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Linga Mudra?
The Linga mudra is useful for the following:
- Warming the body
- Improving circulation
- Augmenting digestion
- Speeding up healing and injury recovery
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. The Linga mudra increases the heat element within the body. For this reason, if you are a pitta dosha type then you should avoid the Linga mudra, as it can aggravate your pitta.
The next mudra we will cover is the Vata Hara Mudra.
#4: The Vata Hara Mudra
Fold the forefinger and the middle finger, touching their tips to the base of the thumb. Now press the fingers with the thumb, as shown. Practice this mudra for 15- 20 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Vata-hara Mudra?
The Vata-hara mudra is useful for the following:
- Overcoming indecisiveness
- Calming the nerves
- Treating insomnia
- Settling the stomach
- Pacifying the mind
- Improving quality of sleep
- Reducing joint pain
- Relieving vertigo
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. Also known as the Vata-nashak Mudra, the Vata-hara Mudra calms the body and helps you get a good night sleep,
The next mudra we will cover is known as the Kapha-nashak Mudra:
#5: The Kapha-nashak Mudra
This mudra is similar to the Vata-hara mudra. However, instead of holding your middle and index fingers with the thumb, you hold the pink and ring fingers, as shown below. Hold this mudra for 15-20 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Kapha-nashak Mudra?
The Kapha-nashak mudra is useful for the following:
- Improving digestion
- Increasing overall energy levels
- Heating the body
- Relieving lethargy
- Getting rid of excess phlegm and mucus in the body.
- Decreasing oiliness in the skin
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. The Kapha-nashak mudra is also known as the Pitta-karaka mudra, because it increases the levels of Pitta-dosha in the body. By ridding the body of excess mucus, this mudra also improves the respiratory system.
The last mudra we will cover is the Prana Mudra:
#6: The Prana Mudra
Touch the tips of the little finger and the ring finger to the thumb. Adjust the pressure at the tips until you can feel your pulse the fingers. Once you feel your pulse, the apana vayu and your root chakra are activated. Practice this mudra for 15- 20 minutes.
When Should I Perform the Prana Mudra?
The Prana mudra is useful for the following:
- Relieving fatigue
- Overcoming weakness and lethargy
- Improving endurance and stamina
- Improving immunity
- Alleviating mental stress, anger, and irritability
- Balancing the thyroid
- Reducing inflammation
- Treating ulcers
- Treating arthritis
Remember that it is very important to feel your pulse while performing this mudra. The Prana Mudra activates the various energy centers in the body. It acts like a dynamo and can dramatically increase your life energy and overall sense of vitality.
According to astrology, the ring finger represents the Sun. The sun is responsible for giving heat and light. The smaller finger stands for Mercury, which is responsible for the water element in the body. When earth, water and fire come together they generate a powerful flow of energy. This mudra effectively increases energy by enhancing the blood circulation in the body. It strengthens the muscles and increases vision as well.
Suggested Mudra Sequence
You can perform each of these mudras one by one in a sequence, or you can do them separately. Be sure to give each of each mudras at least 10 minutes of your time. You can also play some music like that of flute or some natural healing sounds to help attain a calm, meditative state.
List of Mudra Guides
Mudras are very beneficial when performed with proper understanding. Mudras deal with individual elements, combinations of elements, the vital airs, the vital functions and even moods and feelings. Regular practice of each mudra based on our needs and present condition can help us achieve the specific results we are looking for. Please explore our various mudra guides and try out the practices that suit your needs
- Mudras for the Root Chakra
- Mudras for the Sacral Chakra
- Mudras for the Navel Chakra
- Mudras for the Heart Chakra
- Mudras for the Throat Chakra
- Mudras for the Third-eye Chakra
- Mudras for the Crown Chakra
Individual Mudra Guides
- Abhaya Mudra
- Adi Mudra
- Agni Mudra
- Akasha Mudra
- Anjali Mudra
- Apana Vayu Mudra
- Bhumisparsha Mudra
- Brahma Mudra
- Dharmachakra Mudra
- Dhyan Mudra
- Ganesha Mudra
- Gyan Mudra
- Kundalini Mudra
- Lotus Mudra
- Musti Mudra
- Prana Mudra
- Prithvi Mudra
- Rudra Mudra
- Shakti Mudra
- Shankha Mudra
- Shunya Mudra
- Surya Mudra
- Udana Vayu Mudra
- Varada Mudra
- Vayu Mudra
- Vitarka Mudra
- Yoni Mudra