I have always been fascinated by the various hand gestures found in Indian sculptures, and used in Indian classical dance and some in our everyday lives…my general curious search on the internet lead me to some interesting findings…I am sharing a part of it here…
Hasta means hand and Mudra means "seal", "mark", or "gesture”. Hasta Mudras are gestures performed with the hands and are used to convey various feelings, or expressions or meanings. We see this in communication with one another. The hands move, appearing to further communicate what one is speaking. The hands also move reflecting the state of mind even when one isn't speaking. For example, when one is nervous the fingers often fidget or when one is upset the hands can begin to clutch. If anger intensifies the hand becomes a fist that is used to attack.
The opposite of such intense negative emotion are feelings of caring, loving emotions. For example, when we meet one another we either greet with anjali mudra, hands placed together at the heart level (as in Namaste), or with a handshake.
Buddha with Abhaya Mudra
The images and statues of Hindu and Buddhist deities have their hands in a precise gesture. From the hand gesture, one can understand the aspect of the Divine that is being represented. Imagine a deity with the hands clutched. It wouldn't have the same effect as one such as abhaya mudra, the gesture of fearlessness and protection (upward facing open palm).
The use of the Mudras is quite common in the Hindu rituals, Tantric worships, Yoga and also in Classical Indian dances. The Hindu deities are often depicted with their hands making various specific Mudras which are associated with them –but the most common are the twin gestures of dispelling fears and granting boons (downward facing open palm).
Hasta Mudra in the classical dance
The Natya Shastra is a medieval dance text believed to be written as early as 800AD. It is the earliest known dance text, and generally has formed a basis for most subsequent treatises. It was designed to cover all aspects of medieval drama - dance, music, acting, costumes, stage construction and many other theatrical techniques. As the first known text on dance, it has strongly influenced all the subsequent literature through history, as well as the modern classical dance forms currently active in India.
The Natya Shastra describes 24 mudras. In all the forms of Indian classical dance the mudras are similar, though the names and uses vary. There are 28 root mudras in Bharatanatyam dance, 24 in Kathakali dance and 20 in Odissi. These root mudras are combined in different ways, like with just one hand, or with two hands, arm movements, body and facial expressions to make hundreds of mudras .
Each finger represents one of the five elements—the thumb is agni (fire), the forefinger is vayu (air), the middle finger is akash (ether), the ring finger is prithvi (earth) and the little finger is jal (water).
The human hand contains about 100,000 nerves and each fingertip has about 3,000 nerve receptors, just under the surface of the skin. In the brain the hand takes up a very large proportion of the brain's cortex, and each area of the hand is linked to a different part of the brain. When we apply pressure to the fingers and hands, we stimulate related brain areas. So we use hasta mudras to activate pressure points, give messages to the body-mind energy system and change brain patterns. Here is a list of some common Hasta Mudra's...
- Gyan Mudra (Mudra of Knowledge)
Method: Thumb & index finger should touch each other with the other three fingers stretched out.
Benefits: Improves concentration, helps to increase memory and prevents insomnia. Anger can be controlled and reduces depression.
- Prithvi Mudra (Mudra of Earth)
Method: Thumb & the ring finger should touch each other with the other three fingers stretched out.
Benefits: Equilibrium is set between body & mind.
- Varuna Mudra (Mudra of Water)
Method: Tip of little finger touches the tip of thumb, with the other three fingers stretched out.
Benefits: It retains clarity in blood by balancing water content in the body
- Vayu Mudra (Mudra of Air)
Method: Bend the index finger on the base of the thumb & hold it by thumb keeping the other three fingers straight.
Benefits: It provides relief in Rheumatism, Arthritis, Gout, Parkinson’s disease, Facial Paralysis, Paralysis.
- Shunya Mudra (Mudra of Emptiness)
Method: Bend the middle finger and press it with thumb.
Benefits: It relieves an earache and useful for the deaf and mentally challenged, but not for inborn ones.
- Surya Mudra (Mudra of Sun)
Method: Bend the ring finger & hold with thumb.
Benefits: Generates body heat, improve digestion, reduces cholestrol.
- Prana Mudra (Mudra of Life)
Method: Bend ring finger and little finger and touch the tip of thumb with their tips keeping the remaining two fingers stretched.
Benefits: It improves immunity, improves the power of eyes and reduces eye related diseases and removes fatigue.
- Apana Mudra (Mudra of Digestion)
Method: The tips of middle finger and ring finger touch the tip of thumb while the other two fingers are stretched out.
Benefits: It regulates diabetes, cures constipation and piles and helps in excreting the normal waste regularly.
- Apana Vayu Mudra (Mudra of Heart)
Method: The tips of the middle finger and ring finger touch the tip of thumb, while the index finger touches the base of thumb and little finger stretched out.
Benefits: It strengthens the heart and regularizes palpitation, regulates excretory system and redeems gastric trouble.
- Linga Mudra (Mudra of Heat)
Method: Fingers of both palms should lock each other barring left thumb which should be left perpendicular.
Benefits: Improves immunity, generates heat in the body, burns body fat, provides relief in cold.
11. Dhyana Mudra – Meditation Mudra
This gesture predates Buddhism, having been used for long by Hindu yogis to develop powers of concentration and healing. In this mudra, the seated Buddha is seen with hands placed on his lap, right hand over left, palms facing upward and fingers stretched in a relaxed pose. The right hand represents enlightenment, while the left is the illusory nature of existence. Alternatively, this positioning of the hands signifies skilful action (or “method”) as arising from a state of inner calm.
Sign Up!! for Monthly Ezine with updates, Freebies, Discounts...
Meet Sandhya Manne
Hey there... Glad to see you here!! I am a self-taught Indian Artist living in Chennai, India with my husband, and two little kids. I paint everyday at my home studio. While my predominant medium is oils and Ink drawings, I also enjoy creating mixed media.. Since the start of my art career in 2009, my artworks have been part of private collections in Canada, USA and India. I also have credit exhibiting through juried shows in Dallas-Fort Worth area. Learn More
- 2014 (72)
- November (4)
- October (1)
- September (26)
- Day 24 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 23 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 22 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 21 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 20 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 19 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 18 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 17 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 16 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 15 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 14 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 13of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 12 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 11 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 10 of 30 Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 9 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Pictures from SEP 6 Beginners Zentangle Workshop
- Day 8 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 7 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 6 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 5 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 4 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Practice Zentangle Workshop on SEP 20th 2014
- Day 3 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 2 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- Day 1 of 3o Day Sketching Challenge
- August (4)
- July (3)
- June (1)
- March (1)
- February (1)
- January (31)
- Jan 2014 30-30 at a glance
- In search of
- The Meeting
- The one leg dance
- Light Play
- An Orange Evening
- Fishing Boat
- His Majesty
- On the Run
- Quite Moments
- Can't find Fish
- Water Mirror
- Pole View
- Water meets the Sky
- On to the Right
- Morning Stroll
- The First Light
- Drive by the water
- Still Waters
- Golden Earth
- Come over here
- The Yellow Beak
- On my own
- 2013 (98)
- December (5)
- November (1)
- October (2)
- September (31)
- KalamKari - Hand Painted Fabrics
- Clear Sky
- Gentle Waves
- Morning Breeze
- Dancing to the Beat
- Hide and Seek
- I Found it!!
- Sharing the Road
- Its Me Time!!
- Meeting Point
- Morning Walk
- The Blue Green Sea
- City through Backwaters
- Sweet Tender Coconuts
- Yellow Lorry
- The day after rains
- The Orange Guy
- By the Road
- Fantastic Four
- On a quiet day
- The Holy Cow
- The Orange Cloud
- Following your footsteps
- The Wet Beach
- The Purple sky
- The Pillion Rider
- One pleasant day
- Yellow Skates
- August (5)
- July (1)
- May (4)
- April (3)
- March (8)
- February (9)
- January (29)
- Ho Hey!!
- Na NanaNana
- Not me..
- Why Pink??
- No Way!!
- Hey You!!
- That is right!!
- Not really...
- Ad Girl
- Stephanie-The Dog Walker
- There we go!!
- There you go!!
- Pamela-The Godmother
- I see
- How do I know
- Look there!!
- Kim-The Imposter
- Hey there!!
- 3rd ANNUAL ZENTANGLE-INSPIRED ART EXHIBIT - Pictures
- Mugshot 6 Cindy-The Nurturer
- Mugshot # 5 Regula “Babyface”
- Mugshot 4 Brenda "The Designer"
- Mugshot 3 Kim "The Scoop"
- Mugshot2-Laurie"Smooth as Silk"
- Mugshot1-Karin “Quickdraw”
- 2012 (106)
- December (16)
- 3rd ANNUAL ZENTANGLE-INSPIRED ART EXHIBIT
- Bhimbetka - Cave Paintings
- Bike Ride
- The Team
- Nap Time
- I am up!!
- Collin College Nov-Dec Zentangle Workshop Pictures
- 2013 Zentangle at Rowlett Community Center
- 2013- 4 week Zentangle at Collin College
- 2012 Winter Zentangle Class at Huffhines
- The Barn
- HiltonHead Workshop 2012
- The Grass
- The lonely road
- November (3)
- October (4)
- September (8)
- August (8)
- July (6)
- June (15)
- May (23)
- Kanchipuram Silk Sarees
- MAY 2012 Ezine - Kanchipuram Silk Sarees
- Daily Oils #15
- Daily Oils #14
- Daily Oils #13
- Daily Oils #12
- Daily Oils #11
- Daily Oils #10
- Daily Oils #9
- Daily Oils #8
- Daily Oils #7
- Daily Oils #6
- Daily Oils 5
- Meena Bazaar in Dallas..
- In different light
- Cherry Red Daily Oils 3
- Daily Oils 2
- Values - Daily Oils 1
- FIRST ANNIVERSARY GIVEAWAY --- WINNER
- FIRST ANNIVERSARY GIVEAWAY !!!!
- April 2012 Ezine - Madhubani Paintings
- MADHUBANI Paintings
- Kids Summer ART CAMP 2012
- April (4)
- March (5)
- February (9)
- March Zentangle Advance - White on Black Workshop
- Febraury 2012 Ezine - Sri Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple of Madurai
- Madurai Meenakshi Temple
- Pictures of "WITH LOVE" A Special Valentine's Experience art fair
- Febraury Zentangle Basics Workshop Pictures
- Pictures of OXIDE Gallery Night
- Invitation to "WITH LOVE" A Special Valentine's Experience
- February Zentangle Basics Workshop
- Invitation to OXIDE's February Gallery Night
- January (5)
- December (16)
- 2011 (57)
- December (4)
- November (7)
- October (6)
- September (7)
- Art Journaling - First Page of First Journal...
- Zentangle studio scoop Sep week 4
- Invitation for the Gallery Night at OXIDE Gallery...
- PAA Multicultural Exhibit 2011 and Opening Art Reception
- Zentangle studio scoop Sep Week 2
- September 2011 Ezine - "Ganesh Chaturthi" celebrating Lord Ganesha's Birthday...
- Weekend at Lakewood Summer Arts Faire 2011
- August (11)
- July (7)
- June (7)
- May (8)
- The 56th Annual Juied Members Show Receiption
- Guest post on Balancing Art and Motherhood
- 3 of my Artworks at 56th Annual Juried Members Show 2011
- 5 Reasons why my ART is Unique
- February 2011 Ezine
- March 2011 Ezine
- Art Exhibition at The Courtyard Theater, Plano TX
- All about the new series "Padma - The Lotus"
Tangle Art from Zentempletangles
Recent Postes form zentempletangles.com
Sandhya is a very talented artist, her artworks are truly amazing. The color schemes and the designs that she uses is very unique and is kind to the eyes and happy at heart. All her paintings and artwork reflect a...