Mudra means “seal” in Sanskrit.  It’s a symbolic or ritual gesture using primarily the hands.  Each position is believed to have a specific effect.  Specific positions can lead to specific states of consciousness symbolized by the hand positions.  For example, if a person frequently and with feeling does a position of fearlessness, they will also be freed from fearfulness in time.  Mudras are said to engage areas of the brain and/or soul influencing them, sometimes physically, by their use—not unlike an affirmation, or reflexology for that matter.

“One way that all of us can better care for ourselves is by developing techniques for coping
with the irritations and anxiety that are part of life…

Think of these gestures as self-talk for your hands. These simple movements, the gestures
that we often make unconsciously, can help us focus on our work, calm ourselves, release anger and energize us. Used for centuries by many different cultures, mudras are seen in Eastern dance and meditation, in ancient Egyptian friezes, even in Byzantine icons of Christ. Most of us use them today, too: we wave goodbye, we press a hand to our chest in distress, we wriggle our fingers to release energy, or press fingertips together to calm ourselves.

Easy to learn, mudras can be done anywhere, at any time: at traffic lights, in meetings, in
airplanes, when we’re arguing, when we’re grieving, when we need to prepare for sleep. The word mudra can be translated from the Sanskrit as that which brings inner peace, and that s what mudras are: a physical means of quieting our bodies.”  Product description for Mudras: Ancient Gestures to Ease Modern Stress by Emily Fuller Williams.

A great video about mudras:

Since this month’s newsletter opened with mindful/meditative moments and also highlighted mountain pose for grounding and focus, this mudra literally jumped off the page volunteering to be this month’s focus mudra!  Enjoy!

Mudra to increase calm and concentration

Reduces the distractions (clutter and chaos) of your mind and help you concentrate on one issue.

Mudra: Sit straight and tall.  Bring your hands together; palms up.  Touch the backs of your fingers together.  Make a circle with the thumbs and index fingers of each hand, with the index fingers resting lightly under the thumbs.  Keep the other fingers straight up and touching.  Rest hands on belly.  Breathe deeply and slowly for 3 minutes.

Source:  Mudras—Ancient Gestures to Ease Modern Stress, by Emily Fuller Williams.