Our hands are an important part of our body, but often we do not think about them when we talk about health. Through our hands, we have the ability to connect with others and with ourselves. We give, and we receive. Think about all the things that you do with your hands and fingers. You caress the people that you love, extend your hands to help those in need, and many other gestures of love and kindness. Of course, our hands can be the source of pain and suffering, but when we operate from the high vibration of love, our hands only can bring compassion and care. Our hands become an extension of our Consciousness.
Vedic philosophy understands the oneness of all, and that separation is just an illusion of our ego. We do not heal in a vacuum; we do not operate in the individuality of our being. What we create and become is part of a collaboration, many times invisible to our physical eyes. Some people want to believe that the “I” is the most important part of our existence, but only if the “I” identifies with our collective soul, not with our individuality rising from the ego. Learning mudras is also part of an integrated practice.
It is an important relationship between the practice of Mudras and Ayurveda, and how each of the mudras are related to the elements and doshas (Ayurvedic bioforces made of combinations of the five great elements: space, air, fire, water and earth).
This particular mudra focused on one of the five subtypes of Vata dosha (the Ayurvedic bioforce made of space and air) called Apana Vayu. This form of space and air is responsible for all the downward movements in your body, which make bodily functions like urination, elimination and childbirth possible.
Apana Vayu Mudra
Elements involved: Space, Fire, Earth
Doshas involved: Vata (the bioforce of movement), Pitta (the bioforce of transformation)
How to practice: To perform this mudra, the index finger folds and the tip touches the base of the thumb. Touch the tips of the thumb with your middle and ring fingers. The little finger remains straight and pointing outwards.
The benefits: Folding the index finger reduces the air element, which helps with relieving pain and relaxing the body and mind. Connection of the thumb, middle and ring finger increases the fire and earth elements, which helps detoxify and cleanse your body, supplying more oxygen to heart arteries and increasing the power of the heart.
It is believed that when you are suffering from chest pain, this mudra can help ease the pain. People with Kapha dosha (the bioforce of stability) constitution should practice this mudra moderately.
Practicing this mudra is beneficial for people with fast heartbeats and those suffering from chest pain caused by blockages within the arteries. It can also help to relieve headaches, toothaches, backaches and pain in the joints. People who have suffered from cardiac ailments in the past should perform this mudra regularly.
Affirmation: I give love and I receive love.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ESTHER RODRIGUEZ BROWN is founder of The Embracing Project, a grass-root non-profit organization that services child survivors of sex trafficking and gang violence. She is author of The Power of Your Hands, a book that guides you through practicing mudras to direct subtle energy throughout your body, promoting wellbeing, relaxation, a calm mind and expanded consciousness..