Have you ever heard about the supreme state of awareness? This is the state when a being connects with its inner self.
If you ever tried meditation, your main motive might be to gain this state of awareness.
Do you know how to achieve this state of awareness or how saints and yogis get to this level of awareness?
They did it by hours of meditation but they started it with the most power yoga mudra for the ultimate awareness, The Chinmaya Mudra.
Chinmaya Mudra: The Gesture of Awareness
Chinmaya mudra is a simple hand gesture that helps to bring supreme awareness to the body.
Usually, our awareness is scattered in the outer world through five senses of organs. Chinmaya Mudra is a rejuvenator hand gesture that brings outward flowing awareness back inside us.
To bring awareness back inside our body, finger arrangement in Chinmaya mudra is designed in such a way that it connects all individual elements of fingers in one place.
Here, every finger shows some energy association.
- Thumb–Fire or Universal consciousness
- Index finger–Air or individual consciousness
- Middle finger–Ether or Connection
- Ring finger–Earth or physical sensation
- Little finger–Water or fluidity
In Chinmaya mudra, we touch the thumb with index finger & curl the rest three fingers towards the palm.
Thus, Chinmaya mudra connects all individual elements of the fingers in one place and unites individual awareness with the supreme soul.
Through this practice, the awareness of the breath and the prana energy flows smoothly through the body, helping the physical body to remain in balance.
Chinmaya Mudra connects us with the soul/energy or awareness within, that’s why we call it Chinmaya Mudra: the gesture of awareness.
What Does Chinmaya Mudra Represent
Chinmaya Mudra represents our connection with the supreme soul.
The word Chinmaya Mudra originates from the Sanskrit language. Here ‘Chinmaya‘ means ‘Supreme awareness‘, ‘pure wisdom‘ or ‘full of knowledge‘ and ‘Mudra‘ means ‘seal‘ or ‘posture‘.
In other words, Chinmaya also means To Dwell On Self Awareness or Soul.
How to Do Chinmaya Mudra
Chinmaya Mudra includes movement of all the fingers. To perform this mudra, you need to touch the tip of the index finger with the tip of the thumb, forming a circle. Then, curl the rest three fingers at the palm.
Steps to Perform
- Sit in a comfortable yoga asana such as Padmasana (lotus position), Shukhasana (easy pose), Vajrasana (thunderbolt pose).
- Now, close your eyes and breathe deeply to make a flow of prana. This flow will help you attach with your Chitta.
How to Arrange Fingers in Chinmaya Mudra
- Join the tip of your thumb with the tip of your index finger, forming a ‘Zero’ like structure.
- Now curl the rest three fingers to the palm.
- Follow-up steps 1 & 2 with both of your hands, keeping the spine straight.
- Now, without changing the fingers arrangement, place your palms (facing up) over the kneecap.
- At this stage, you can go for deep abdominal ujjayi breath.
For better concentration, you can also chant ‘OM’ while exhaling.
Time and Duration for Chinmaya Mudra
Still, there is no specific time to do Chinmay mudra, so you can practice it anytime.
As this mudra is a meditative mudra, so you need a disturbance-free environment to perform it. In the morning time, there is least noise and disturbance, therefore, perform this mudra in the morning time to get best results.
Perform it mudra for a minimum of 10-15 minutes. Then increase the duration of practicing gently for 40-45 minutes once you become comfortable in handling fingers in same position. It’ll bring better results.
The most important aspect of this mudra is consistency. Try to do this mudra consistently, you will definitely see the results in very less time.
Precautions to Take
- Chinmaya mudra is all about getting concentrated. Do this mudra in a quiet place, away from disturbances.
- Wear comfortable clothes, otherwise, you will feel hard to concentrate.
- Don’t press the tips of thumb and index finger too hard. Touch them lightly.
- Avoid hard-pressuring of the rest of the three fingers.
- Don’t press the whole distal phalanx of the finger. Touch only the tips of the fingers.
Chinmaya Mudra Vs. Chin/Gyan Mudra
We can differentiate Chinmaya mudra from Chin mudra based on two aspects:
1. Based on the Motive of Mudra
Chinmaya Mudra is a little different from the Chin mudra. Chinmaya Mudra brings the awareness within, while Chin mudra helps to generate self-consciousness.
Awareness is not much different from consciousness, but still, we can’t both the same.
Consciousness results from what we see or what we had known, is a part of our Chitta. On the other hand, awareness is what we think and what we are aware of. Consciousness is divided and variable, but awareness is total and invariable.
According to a world expert on lucid dreaming, Stephen LaBerge [efn_note] Consciousness and Awareness https://www.scienceandnonduality.com/article/are-consciousness-and-awareness-the-same [/efn_note],
Consciousness is awareness plus mind and the structure of the individual brain. That’s a critical understanding, he says. Consciousness has to do with the brain, but it’s not awareness. Awareness is the word for what it is prior to the one thing we are sure of.
2. Based on the Formation of Fingers
Basically, Chin mudra is a variation of Gyan mudra. In chin mudra, the tip of our thumb touches the tip of the index finger, and the remaining three fingers remain extended and palm facing down. Hands are placed over the middle thighs in vajrasana.
On the other hand, in Chinmaya mudra, the tip of the thumb touches the tip of the index finger, and the remaining three fingers also curled to the palm facing upwards.
Thus, Chinmaya mudra differs from Chin mudra.
How Does Chinmaya Mudra Work
We know, the tip of each finger associate some nerves. Chinmaya Mudra includes gentle pressure in tips of each finger.
The pressure helps in the stimulation of nerves, resulting in a better nervous system. A better nervous system leads to good mental and physical health.
The air element is especially beneficial for the function of the brain.
Our index finger is associated with the energy of the air element. In this mudra, the index finger comes in contact with the thumb (fire element).
The contact of the thumb and index finger makes a closed-loop, which does not allow the element to disperse their energy into the environment. This clears the way of prana to our Chitta and spiritual powers. Thus, the air element in the body gets balanced, which leads to a powerful brain.
This mudra also redirects the flow of energy of other elements ( ether, earth and water) associated with the rest of our fingers. This flow of energy keeps us healthy, physically and mentally.
Benefits of Chinmaya Mudra
- Helps in Gain Awareness
In Chinmaya Mudra, the contact of the thumb and index finger helps to bring our connection with the supreme soul. This helps in clearing the mind and bring a flow of awareness.
- Opens Blockages of Thoracic Region
Chinmaya Mudra activates middle chest, back and middle lobs of lungs. This helps in the flow of prana in the middle chest, back, and lobs of the lung.
This flow of prana opens the middle lobs of the lung (the part which receives air), resulting in a proper flow of energy in the Thoracic region.
Thus this mudra regulates energy in the Thoracic (chest) region.
- Prevents Memory Loss
We mainly lose memory due to unrelaxed and unhealthy mind. Chinmaya mudra leads to a smooth flow of prana to the nerves connecting the brain. This relaxes the brain and body. Thus it prevents memory loss.
- Improves Digestion
The nervous system controls the major functions of the digestive system [efn_note] How the Nervous System Interacts
with Other Body Systems https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/organ.html [/efn_note] Chinmay mudra connects the flow of energy to the nervous system. This improves the function of the nervous system and helps in digestion of food.
- Cures Insomnia (Sleep Disorders)
Stress, depression, and anxiety are mainly responsible for sleep disorders. These are symptoms of the uncalm mind. The common reason behind these disorders is scattered awareness.
By the practice of this mudra, we let not scattered our awareness to the outer world, hence it’s helpful for calming the mind and body. Thus, the regular practice of this mudra cures sleep disorders.