The ultimate guide to Hindu, Buddhist and Yoga mudras

In this mudras guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about these hand gestures and a complete list of mudras to use. You’ll find mudras from yoga, Buddhism, Hinduism and other spiritual systems. And you’ll discover how they benefit you.   

I’ve created a complete mudras list below with pictures to help you to get started. But first, you will probably want to know about the power of these hastas/hand mudras.  

Yoga mudras offer natural ways in which you can heal your body and mind. And you can combine them with powerful mantras too. 

Here’s what we’ll be looking at in this guide.

CONTENTS

Why this yoga mudra guide matters

Hindu and yoga mudras have been popular in the East for more than 4000 years. But they are still relatively unknown in the West.

I’m about to change that.

In this guide, I’m going to bring yoga mudras to the West like never before. I will reveal absolutely everything you need to know about these spiritual hand-gestures and body positions.

My aim with this guide is to present the ultimate guide and list of hand mudras (hastas), including Hindu, yoga, and Buddhist mudras and their benefits. 

There are many articles online that introduce the mudras, but I have not found a single guide that really explains what mudras are or how they work (the science), let alone one that examines the nuances of yoga, Hindu, and Buddhist mudras.

I want to fill that gap.

With this article, I am bringing together all my knowledge of yoga mudras.

I have spoken to great masters, and I have read countless articles and books on mudras. I am bringing that knowledge together to create this guide.

My purpose with The Daily Meditation is to spread meditation and spirituality to a million people. If that is a mission you believe in, join me. Share this article on Facebook and Twitter, leave a comment, join me on social media and via our newsletter, and let’s bring spirituality to the masses.

And now for my ultimate guide to mudras.

What Are Mudras in Yoga, Hinduism and Buddhism?

Let’s start from the beginning. What are mudras? What do we mean when we (for instance), talking about Apan mudra?

The yoga hand mudras (hastas) are used mostly in Hatha Yoga as well as meditation, Buddhism and Hinduism. They are symbolic gestures that involve various parts of the body.

If you’re a beginner, you probably have used a couple of these hand gestures in either yoga class or meditation. However, there are hundreds of different ones, and some do not only involve the hands but the entire body.

For instance, there are mudras that involve the eyes, the body, the breathing organs… and of course, there are hand mudras that use finger positions. 

Different mudras mean different things. They symbolise different states of mind.

For instance, the Abhaya mudra, which we will look at later, symbolises fearlessness.

The Gyan mudra, meanwhile, brings peace and serenity. For all mental states, there is a corresponding mudra.

Some of the different mudras, like meditation mudras, symbolise states of mind. But not only do meditation mudras symbolise states of mind they also help you to access those states of mind.

So if you, for instance, use the Abhaya mudra for an extended period of time you will become fearless.

This is precisely what happened to me five years ago.

I went through a period of terrible stress when I was forced to leave my home in Canada to return to England. For personal reasons my mind was literally full of fear about my health and my future. I needed to change that. I took myself outside our home in Oxfordshire, England and meditated for six hours in the rain while using the Abhaya mudra. Let me tell you, a six hour meditation session using the Abhaya mudra will make a huge difference to your mind. Six hours later I felt focused and mentally strong. Thanks to this and other meditation sessions, I overcame stress, I regained my health, and I have been healthy ever since. That’s one of many times meditation – mudras have worked for me personally.

How Many Mudras Are There? And Which Are The Best?

Many people ask me how many mudras there are. And I’ve seen some really bad estimates online. I actually read on a different site that there are 30 mudras. That’s miles off. 

Believe it or not, there are more than 100 hand mudras in yoga and meditation. You can find a list of all mudras with pictures below. 

Deciding which are the best mudras is an individual thing. Each one has its own benefits, which you can read about below. Take a look at the list and find the one that gives you the benefit you most want at the moment. 

How mudras work – the science 

Let’s examine how mudras work and the science behind them.

Mudras are a way to use body positions and mostly hand positions for healing [for instance, see this list of mudras for weight loss and health].

Yoga mudras work by activating certain parts of the brain and body in a way similar to reflexology.

Discussing how mudras work, Kundalini Yoga mudra expert Lothar-Rudiger Lutge says:

“Kundalini Yoga acknowledges that all parts of the hands and fingers form reflex zones for associated parts of the body and brain. So, in this way, the hands are a mirror to the body and mind.”

We can learn a lot about the use of yoga mudras by considering hand reflexology charts.

hand reflexology chart

When we use hand mudras, or “Hastas”, we activate the hands and fingers and we influence the correlated parts of the body, as shown in the chart above.

Some yoga mudras, however, use not just the hands but other parts of the body too. The Maha mudra, for instance, is a full-body mudra performed by stretching the spine and grabbing hold of one foot.

The way how these mudras work is by using the psychology of nonverbal communication (body language).

Thanks to science we know that the way you hold your body has a direct effect on your state of mind.

For instance, when you are trying to look inside yourself to tap into intuition, you will naturally move your eyes closer together, going semi-cross-eyes and gazing upwards between the eyebrows. You will do this naturally and unconsciously. But this exact same position, with your eyes slightly crossed and gazing upwards between the eyebrows, happens to be the exact same position used in Shambhavi, the “Eyebrows Gazing Gesture”, which, not by coincidence, is used for insight and intuition.

You can feel for yourself the benefit mudras offer.

If you hold any of the hand mudras (there are 60 mudras list below) for a few minutes, you will feel a difference in your mental state.

So while there is little science on mudras, you can feel the effect they have for yourself.

Here’s a massive point:

Mudras do not come from religion. This an erroneous way of thinking. The actual word Mudra comes from Hinduism, but mudras do not.

Where did they originate?

They come from nature.

We naturally make all the mudras without thinking about it.

Take a look at the mudras list and pictures lower down on this page and you will notice that you naturally and unconsciously make most of the gestures used in yoga mudras.

So what does that tell us about the yoga mudras?

It tells us that they are natural body language gestures. 

Therefore, when we practice yoga mudras or meditation mudras we are intentionally putting our body in gestures that we have unconsciously been making all our lives.

Normally, our mental state changes the way we hold the body. If we are being kind and generous, we will hold our hands out with the palms upwards as though offering something. This is a body language gesture we do unconsciously when we are feeling kind and generous.

Now flip the picture.

What if we consciously hold our hands out with the palms up? Then we will produce the mental state of kindness and generosity. And that is basically how mudras work. 

Mind creates mudra.

Mudra creates mind.

History

If we knew the history of mudras it would be easier to understand the science behind them.

Unfortunately, no one knows precisely where yoga mudras originate from.

They are found in Asia, but they are also used throughout the world.

And although the term “Mudra” is Hindu, historically speaking, the actual hand positions used in mudras are ubiquitous. Humans have used these gestures for millions of years long before religions even existed. In fact, even chimps and apes make the same gestures. 

It is, however, quite inevitable that the mudras of yoga should be used globally and by all societies, because mudras stem directly from body language.

Mudras are modelled poses of moves that we naturally make.

All people and many animals use their hands / paws as a way to express emotion.

People from all cultures, as well as animals like chimpanzees, use their hands or paws as a primary means of communicating emotions. And we all share certain gestures, such as the gesture in which we place our palms together, fingers reaching to the sky. Christians call it the “prayer gesture”. Hindus and Buddhists call it the “Anjali mudra”. And even chimps use the exact same gesture. It just goes to show, we are more alike than we are different.

If we look at the history of mudras we can trace them back to India, beginning with Hindu mudras and then yoga ones. But this doesn’t tell the full story. Because in truth, they have existed as long as man, and all around the world. In Europe, for instance, we see many hand gestures in Christianity, which stem from Nordic rituals, such as raising the hands to invoke the gods.

And then there’s today.

Just think about how you use your hands.

The next time you talk to someone, be mindful of how you are expressing your emotions via your hands. You will notice that you naturally make lots of mudras and gestures and that they naturally relate to your emotions and mental states.

That said, they do have more meaning in Hinduism. 

You might have wondered. what do mudras mean? This varies by religion. Hindu mudras, for instance, represent the many Hindu gods. Each god has specific attributes, so when we practice jhana (meditation) with the mudras of Hinduism, we invite the strengths of the gods into ourselves. In other religions, such as Christianity and Buddhism, we can use mudras for meditation, contemplation and even dance (such as the Indian Classical Dance).  

Mudras And Elements (Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Space) 

One of the benefits of mudras is the elemental-effect they have.

Many cultures believe that the universe is comprised of different elements, for instance in China, Japan and India.

Most cultures share the common universal elements earth, air, fire, and water, and some cultures, like Buddhism and Hinduism, also recognise space (or ether).

The better you regulate those fundamental elements in your body, the healthier you will be.

When these elements are balanced and harmonised in the body you will be healthy. And when these elements are out of balance you may suffer from illness and disease, whether mental or physical. One way to balance the elements is by using hand mudras.

Here’s the relationship between hand mudras and elements: 

(Source: Gaia.com)

How To Practice Mudras For Yoga And Meditation

Let’s now talk about how to practice mudras in yoga and meditation. It is very easy. Beginners will have no trouble getting started with some basic ones [the mudras list and pictures below will help]. 

All you have to do is place your hands and finger into the right formation.

For instance, to make the Karana Mudra you simply extend your fifth and second fingers and curl your remaining fingers inwards so that your thumb touches your third finger.

With your hands in the correct position you then meditate. That is the basic practice of mudras.

Tips for beginners

1.      When you practice a yoga mudra [list below] you should have only minimal pressure in your fingers and your hands should feel relaxed and without tension. At times this might be a challenge. Some mudras are quite complex. For instance, the Shakti mudra requires that you make a fist while extending your fourth finger upwards and your fifth finger outwards. The Shakti mudra is fine for young yogis, no doubt, but a challenge for older people and especially for people with arthritis. But thankfully, not all mudras are as complicated as the Shakti mudra.

2.      You may notice that you struggle to make certain mudras. Beginners might find some of the positions quite complicated.  Perhaps you can do a mudra with one hand but not with the other, or you need to use one hand to support the other before you can do the mudra.  In that instance, simply do what you need to do to perform the mudra comfortably. If you can only make a mudra with one hand while using the other for support, that is fine.

3.      The more you practice the mudras the more comfortable you will be with them and the less pain you will have in corresponding parts of your body.

4.      But bear in mind, they do not need to be performed perfectly to have effect. Do your best, and trust that the more you practice the easier it will become.

5.      When using mudras for meditation you can be either sitting, lying down or standing up, whichever you prefer. The only exception to this is when the mudra involves specific body positions.

6.      As with meditation, mudras require good posture. Make sure your spine is in good alignment and that your entire body is relaxed with no tension (except for some specific yoga mudras, like the Maha mudra above, that intentionally use tension in the body).

7.      Relaxation is important to the flow of energy around the body, whether that’s Kundalini energy, prana, chi, or any other kind of energy, the more relaxed you are the better your energy will flow.

8.      You might also like to use pranayama (rhythmic breathing used in yoga) to get more into the mudra.

Difference between mudras for meditation and yoga

When you use a hasta or hand mudra for meditation, you can use any of the different types of meditation. Or you might choose to think about something.

Unlike in meditation, when you practice a yoga mudra you can think about something else if you wish. However, in my experience, for the best effect you should meditate. The choice is entirely yours. Thinking about something will not prevent the mudra from working.

If you are meditating, the best way to use mudras for meditation is with a basics breathing technique. 

Be mindful of pranayama, of the rhythmic flow of your breath through your body. And for the best effect with many mudras you will want to adopt a certain position while visualising a certain thing while using the mudra. The complete combination of these elements can lead to profound changes in your mind and body.

Where and when to practice

It matters more how you practice mudras rather than when or where. Just make sure you are relaxed and focused. Some yogis even practice mudras while stuck in traffic, though there are of course inherent dangers to that.

If you are a beginner, mudras are best when done somewhere quiet and peaceful, without distractions. 

Some of the best times to use mudras are in the morning, during lunch break, after work, and before bed. As I mentioned, it is entirely up to you when you practice the mudras. Try to be relaxed and focused. If you truly want a profound transformational experience, go to a relaxing and beautiful nature spot and try practising mudras there. You’ll love it.

You can just do them at home if you like.  Then, once you have grown accustomed to the different mudras [see the list and pictures below] you will be able to use them more easily and more quickly wherever you happen to be.  For instance, if you’re stuck with a bad customer on the phone at work you can use the Gyan mudra (palms up with index finger touching thumb). The Gyan mudra is a very relaxing mudra. So in stressful moments you can use the mudra for a quick spot of relaxation.

What are the best mudras for meditation and yoga?

Choosing the best mudra for meditation / yoga is an individual thing. It really depends what benefits you are looking for. However, beginners should stick to one hand position at a time.

When you practice the yoga hand mudras, you should not hop from one to the next. This is a mistake lots of beginners make. And it is understandable. When you’re doing something new it’s fun to try out different things. But this is not best practice.

It takes a period of time for a yoga mudra to be effective.

If you are a beginner you will need to use a hand position for at least ten minutes before it has an effect on your mind. If you switch from one to the next you won’t experience any heightened mental state, you’ll just get a vague impression of one state, and then another and so on. It is much better to stay with one position and to truly get into that one so you can experience it fully.

Choose whichever you think is the best mudra for your meditation and stick with that one for your entire meditation session. 

You might also like to leave a gap between different mudras.

When you use a mudra you will change your mental state and you will change your world. Every change of mind brings with it a change in the way you perceive the world. So, when you use a mudra you change your mind and change your world. But it will take a short while to truly experience those changes. So, when you are starting out, leave a few hours between different mudras.

How long does it take mudras to work? 

There is a lot of discussion about how long it takes mudras to work. 

The great masters do not agree on a set amount of time. Keshav Dev, an Indian mudra researcher, says that you should hold one mudra for 45 minutes a day. However, if you are new to mudras you will struggle with this and you may end up with pain in your fingers. That’s why it is best to use one mudra three times a day for 15 minutes at a time with a break of at least a few hours between each session.

Kinesiologist Kim da Silva, a recognised expert, recommends that you choose how long you will hold the position for before you begin. This helps to stop distractions. If you don’t set a time you will be checking the clock, and that is not conducive to heightened mental states.

If you are using mudras to cure a specific problem, or if you have a health condition, you should ask a professional for advice on the best mudras to use and how long to use them for. If you have arthritis in your fingers, for instance, holding a mudra for too long will lead to pain and perhaps even injury.

Some of the positions are used for health conditions. For instance, the Linga mudra can be used for lung complications. Ones like this should only be used for as long as necessary. When you notice the health benefits you are looking for you should stop.

When you finish practising, you might like to be still and silent for ten minutes and meditate on your breath. This is a great way to finish your session.

Breathing and visualisations when practising mudras

Holding the actual hand position of a mudra is the basic foundation of the experience. If you would like to enhance the experience, you use visualisations, affirmations, and breathing techniques.

The first and most important of these enhancements is the breath and pranayama.

Here is what you need to know:

1.      You should make sure that you have good posture anytime you use a mudra. Your spine should be in good alignment and your arms should be relaxed about one inch to the side of your body. You will know when you have the right position because you will feel more solid and more stable with less tension in your body.

2.      Before you begin, make sure that you are breathing deeply (diaphragmatically). The easiest way to do this is by using breathing meditations for a few minutes.  

3.      If you are using a mudra for relaxation you should breathe deeply and in a slow and relaxed fashion.

4.      If you are using a mudra to produce energy or to refresh yourself, breathe out more vigorously.

5.      Overall, breathing should be flowing, energised, deep, and slow.

6.      When you inhale, you can apply a little more pressure in the hands and fingers.

7.      When you exhale, relax the hands and fingers (while still maintaining the mudra).

8.      As well as using these breathing tips, you can add visualisations and affirmations to your mudras. Though, the exact visualisation and affirmation will depend on the mudra you are using.

Enhancing through music, colours, and more

There are many more ways that you can enhance your mudra practice. Essentially, any way in which you can influence your mood can also be used to enhance your meditation practice.

For instance, consider music.

If you visit a meditation retreat, a rehabilitation centre, a luxury spa, or anywhere else that is designed to get you feeling a certain way, you will hear relaxing and uplifting music.

You already know the beneficial effects music can have. And you can use music to enhance your mudra practice too.

Music that creates the right mental state can be used during your mudra practice. For instance, if you are practising the Apan mudra to relax, you might like to put on some relaxing classical music. Or if you are using the Ksepana mudra, which produces happiness and positivity, you might like to put some uplifting music on.

Just as you can match music to mood, you can do the same thing with colours.

Colour psychology can be used to help create the right mood in the room you are practising your mudras in.

There are many more ways in which you can enhance your practice. Try a variety of ways to produce the right mood for you.

THE BIG HAND MUDRAS LIST, WITH PICTURES

List Of Yoga Mudras For Physical Health Problems

In the list of mudras below, you will find many for health problems. The majority of these mudras come from Chinese medicine and are based on Five Element Theory.  It can seem quite bizarre that putting your hands into a specific position can help with a health problem in, for instance, your lungs. But once you actually try the mudras you can feel the difference for yourself.

It is worth noting that the mudras should not be used by themselves to cure health problems.

If you are suffering from a health problem you shouldn’t look at mudras as the be-all-end-all answer to your problems. Instead, they offer additional support.

The best health system is a holistic one like Ayurveda, that includes mudras alongside diet and exercise.

When you use a mudra for a specific health problem you will usually use one specific mudra every day for a number of weeks or even months. It takes many months or years for most diseases to form, so it takes quite a long time for a mudra to heal the problem.

Healing Mudras List For Meditation And Yoga  

Ashwini (Horse) Mudra: Helps with sexual health.

Gyan Mudra

The Gyan Mudra is performed by touching the tip of the index finger to the tip of the tumb and having the remaining three fingers held straight out.

Gyan enhances your knowledge and the way you use that knowledge. The thumb’s tip relates to the energy of the endocrine and pituitary glands. By using it for ten minutes you will activate these glands. This improves memory and helps to enhance the brain. It heightens attention and can cure insomnia. It is also helpful for anxiety and depression.

Prithvi Mudra

The Prithvi Mudra is performed by touching the tip of the ring finger to the tip of thumb, with the other fingers pointing straight out.

Prithvi helps to cure musco-skeletal problems and also helps with gaining weight and also reducing skin problems.

Varuna Mudra (water element)

The Varuna mudra is performed by touching the tip of the little finger to the tip of the thumb with the remaining three fingers being held out straight.

Varuna is a water element mudra and helps to prevent dehydration. This is helpful for balancing the bloodstream and also helps with muscle shrinkage and Gastroenteritis. 

Vayu Mudra (Air Element)

The Vayu Mudra is an air element mudra. It is performed by placing the index finger underneath the thumb so the tip of the index finger touches the base of the thumb. Hold the other fingers out straight.

Vayu balances the air element and helps with relieving arthritis, gout, rheumatism, Parkinson’s disease and paralysis.

Surabhi mudra: Helps energy to flow through the body.

Shunya Mudra / Emptyness Mudra

The Shunya Mudra / Emptyness Mudra is performed by placing the third finger underneath the thumb, the tip of the third finger touching the base of the thumb. The other fingers are held straight.

Shunya helps to sharpen your mind and can also clear ear infections. It is best practised for 40 – 60 minutes at a time.

Surya / Sun Mudra

The Surya Mudra / Sun Mudra is performed by placing the fourth finger underneath the thumb so the tip of the fourth finger touches the base of the thumb. The other fingers are held out straight.

The Surya Mudra / Sun Mudra is best performed for 10 -15 minutes. It helps with weight loss and also reduces anxiety.

Prana Mudra / Life Mudra

The Prana Mudra is performed by pressing the tips of the ring finger and little finger to the tip of the thumb. The remaining fingers are held out straight.

It  improves strength and mobility, helps lower cholesterol and blood pressure and helps with getting you active. It also boosts the immune system and helps sight.

Apana Mudra / Digestion Mudra

The Apana Mudra is performed by pressing the tips of the ring finger and middle finger to the tip of the thumb. The other fingers are held out straight.

Apana is the best mudra for helping digestion. Practice it for 45 minutes a day and it will help regulate blood sugar, relieve constipation, gastroenteritis and IBS.

Apana Vayu Mudra / Heart Mudra

The Apana Vayu Mudra / Heart Mudra is performed by pressing the tips of the ring and fourth finger to the tip of the thumb and curling the index finger over to press the base of the thumb while the little finger is stretched out. Practice this mudra for ten minutes at a time and it will help with the wellbeing of your heart. It regulates palpitations and helps digestion.

Linga Mudra: Heat Mudra

To perform the Linga mudra, interlock the finger of both hands. Now hold the thumb of the left hand straight up and wrap the index finger and thumb of the right hand around it.

Practising the Linga Mudra for ten minutes will produce heat in the body and will assist the lungs and relieve phlegm. It can help to cure colds and fevers and is a great help with bronchial infections.

List Of The Best Mudras For Mental Health

As well as helping to heal physical health problems, mudras can heal emotional and psychological problems too.

They are actually a wonderful form of brain training because when you use specific hand and finger formations you activate different regions of your brain. They can also be used to influence brainwaves, for instance to enter the positive and productive alpha brainwaves.

You can use them to create positive emotions too. Take a moment now to gently rub the tips of your thumb and index finger together. Notice how it creates a very positive feeling? And that is just one very simple gesture.

They can also balance your right and left brain. Balancing the brain’s hemispheres is one of the proven benefits of meditation. And it is a benefit of mudras too. When you balance the brain’s hemisphere in this way you enhance cognitive function and improve your memory.

As I mentioned, there has been preciously little scientific research into the mudras. However, science is just observation. You can conduct the science, the observation for yourself. Make a fist. You will feel power and anger. Now relax your hands, place them palms up in your lap, and curl your index and thumb so their tips touch. This is the Chin Mudra. Notice how it makes you feel relaxed? Of course, this is very rudimentary science. However, nothing can beat personal observation. Notice how mudras make you feel. And stick to the mudras that work for you.

List of All mudras and their uses

If you’re interested in learning more mudras. You might like to start with these mudras for the mind.

List of Hand Mudras for Health

Vajroli (Thunderbolt)  : Energises the sexual organs.

Tse  : Stops sadness and depression and improves insight and intuition. This is one of the best for your mind.

Ganesha  : Strengthens heart. Opens bronchial tubes. Open fourth chakra. Promotes courage, confidence and openness towards other people.

Usha  : Helps you wake up in the morning and provides energy.

Pushan  : Helps with digestion. Increases oxygen and decreases carbon-dioxide. Detoxifies.

Bronchial  : Strengthens breathing and helps with respiratory problems.

Asthma  : Helps with asthma and other breathing difficulties.

Pran  : Activates root chakra. Improves vitality and self-confidence.

Linga  : Increases body heat and helps with breathing problems.

Apan  : Supports the removal of waste products from the body. Balances mind. Improves liver.

Shankh  : Used in Hindu rituals. Also helps eliminate throat problems.

Surabhi  : Helps with rheumatism and osteoarthritis.

Vayu  : Prevents wind.

Shunyu  : Helps with ear and hearing problems.

Prithivi  : Strengthens root chakra. Increases sense of smell. Good for hair, fingers, nails and bones.

Varuna  : Clears congestion to helps with sinus and throat problems.

Vitarka  : Promotes the energy of teaching.

Bhudi  : Balances fluids. Helps with dry eyes and mouth. Strengths kidney and bladder.

Apan Vayu  : Helps with heart attack and other chronic heart problems. Promotes calmness.

Back  : Helps with back problems, especially after exercising.

Kubera  : Helps you to find specific things and to progress towards your goals.

Kundalini  : Increases sexual energy and strengthens sexual organs.

Ksepana  : Helps skin, lungs and large intestine to eliminate toxins and other wastes. Also removes expended energy.

Rudra  : Strengthens the earth element and corresponding organs, including the heart.

Garuda  : Strengthens blood flow and circulation to provide a boost to your vital organs. Balances mood.

Suchi  : Relieves constipation. Helps eliminate unwellness, spite, impatience, violent temper, and clinging.

Mushti  : Helps you find the cause of aggression and to let anger out in a healthy way.

Matangi  : Improves breathing and boosts energy in the solar plexus. Stimulates wood element, which represents new beginnings. Helps with organs.

Mahasirs  : Removes tension in the head and face to reduce headache, sinus, neck and back pain.

Hakini  : Balances right and left brain and enhances communication between the two, which improves memory and cognitive function.

Khechari  : Creates energy and helps to remove hate, anger and desire.

Vajra  : Increases energy and circulation.

Bhramara: Strengthens the immune system and helps with allergies.

Uttarabodhi: Strengthens metal element, which helps with lungs and large intestine. Refreshes mind and body.

Detoxification  : Helps remove waste and toxins and also removes negative thoughts, bad habits and similar negatives.

Shakti: Helps with diaphragmatic breathing and promotes inner calm.

Maha Sacral: Helps relieve abdominal complaints and menstruation pains.

Makara  : Activates kidney energy and fights depression to create positive energy.

Mukula  : Is used to balance the body’s electrical field to cure pain and health problems.

Joint: Helps to promote joint health, especially in the knees.

Kalesvara  : Promotes inner calm and stillness and promotes positive character traits.

Shivalinga  : Stops listlessness, depression and fatigue and promotes positive energy.

Jnana Mudra and Chin Mudra: Connect the individual with their deity and increase wisdom.

These infographics show all thee different mudras. 

Click the images for full size.

Spiritual-Mudras-2-600x1500

health mudras from buddhism yoga hinduism2

health mudras 1

List of Spiritual Mudras (Buddhist and Hindu)

Anjali: Used for inner peace and calmness. Aids in meditation and prayer.

Dhyani  : Helps with contemplation and brings new insight and information to mind.

Mudra of the Inner Self: Opens the heart chakra and connects you with the divine.

Lotus: Opens the heart chakra. Promotes love. Brings blessings.

Varada: Helps with self-forgiveness and brings blessings.

Bhumisparsha  : Grounds you and promotes oneness and enlightenment.

Dharmachakra  : Represents the cycle of life, death and rebirth and inspires you to contribute to society.

Vajrapradama: Gives you faith in yourself and promotes self-confidence.

Dhayana: Promotes enlightenment.

Naga: Promotes wisdom and shrewdness and helps with everyday problems.

Pushpaputa  : Helps with openness and acceptance. Helps us to both give to the universe and to receive.

Abhaya Mudra: Helps you overcome fear and brings protection.

List of mudra from Hatha Yoga  

Shambhavi (eyebrow gazing):  Reduces stress. Activates third eye. Promotes insight.
Buhari: Promotes memory and concentration. Calms the mind.

Agochari: Stimulates root chakra. Promotes concentration. Calms the nervous system.

Akashi: Balances brain hemispheres. Produces calm. Creates inner balance.

Bhujangani: Aids to digestion and relieves stomach complaints and gas.

Kaki: Improves mouth, gums and digestive tract. Boosts sense of taste.

Yoni: Closes off external sources to create a supreme relaxation.

Shanti: Stimulates root chakra to provide more energy to the body.

Maha Mudra: Helps with many physical pains and diseases.

Conclusion

I hope you have found this guide to mudras helpful. It is my aim in this guide to provide the science, art, and realities of mudras and to show you how you can use mudras in your own life.

It is my passion and purpose to bring spirituality and meditation to a million people. If I have helped you, please will you leave a comment? That will let me know that I am moving in the right direction.

 

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About Paul Harrison

Paul Harrison is a qualified meditation teacher and writer with more than 15 years experience in meditation and mindfulness. He studied meditation in Oxford, UK, and Hamilton Ontario Canada, and earned his degree at Staffordshire University. Paul has helped thousands of people to discover their true potential through mindfulness, yoga and meditation.

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18 Responses

  1. Hi Paul!
    I came across your piece on Mudras while researching in preparation for a workshop I’m teaching. This is such great information, I’ll definitely give you a shout out.
    Namaste

  2. Hi dear Paul,

    Whilst searching for hand mudras, I have found your website and your great research on this subject. I will personally start introducing mudras much more seriously in my own meditation practice now.

    My search for mudras was actually to prepare for my next blog post. Aman.vas is a yoga fashion label created by Yoginis for Yoginis, following the slow fashion movement and ethical production, and we create a monthly blog post.

    Would you give me permission to use some content on the mudras from your website? I would of course be more than happy to quote you.

    Looking forward to your response.

    Stay healthy and safe.

    Best regards

    Susanne

  3. This is the very first time I come across any of this great information. I plan to use this for my growth in all aspects of life and eventually those with an open mind and heart. Thanks for being so comprehensive!

    Blessings

  4. Wow.. Hats off to you for creating this amd sharing your insight in an easy to understand format!! (plus pictures!) 🙂 woot woot! You truly gave me a completely new way to look at mudras! I cannot say THANK YOU ENOUGH! I am Truly grateful and blessed!
    Shalom, Namaste and God Bless!
    Love and Light my friend
    Keep doing what your doing cuz you made an impact on me and in my life friend! Cheers ?

  5. Thank you so much for this guide, I’m discovering the mudras world and I find it so wonderful. All the light and keep your good work.

  6. Good articles with useful insights. Although, I found it to be a little preposterous when you say that you don’t attribute their origin to any specific culture while using All the information documented and practiced in Hindu culture! Mudras have been practised since Vedic times in India which predates any other evidence of use in any other culture… Hinduism and Buddhism were later offshoots of the same, so India is the place! Anyways, peace and love to all!

  7. This is the first time that I’ve learned about mudras. Thank you so very much for the excellent information! I think I followed almost every link that you had. 🙂
    The charts were very helpful for being able to see the different movements.

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